The tea situation in Japan has been difficult for several years, and, coupled with the pandemic, 2020 may be especially hard for tea farmers in Japan.
Tea farmers normally focus on cultivating and processing Japanese tea, which most of them sell through the local tea auctions. However, because of the decreasing demand, the market price for Japanese tea has been gradually falling over the years.
Anticipating a rise in the demand due to the upcoming 2020 Olympics, in 2019 a lot of tea sellers in Japan prepared extra stock. Then in early 2020 the pandemic hit the world. The 2020 olympics were posted, many teashops were forced to close due to temporary lockdowns and immigration of foreign visitors, who often purchase tea as a souvenir, was completely halted.
Now tea sellers had a lot more stock and much less demand than expected. It is no surprise that this pushed down the market price for Japanese tea even more. A number of tea farmers gave up on summer tea production, and several of them, seeing they can no longer make the ends meet, are even considering quitting tea farming altogether.
Seeing the difficult situation, in the summer of 2020 our association started holding online Meet the Tea Farmer events, that are meant to give tea farmers international exposure as well as to create a direct connection with the tea professionals and tea lovers around the world. For people abroad these events also give a unique opportunity to meet the tea farmers directly, and get to know who is behind the tea they enjoy. We believe that creating these connections will help the tea professionals and tea lovers to access hard-to-find high quality Japanese teas and for the tea farmers will help create an additional stream of revenue.
To see more information about the events and see who will be our next guest tea farmer check our event page here.