Japanese teas are becoming more and more popular abroad. To take advantage of it, 5 cities and 2 towns in Shizuoka Prefecture are teaming up to export agricultural products including the local specialty – tea. In Kyoto a highschool in Kizu City has received Global GAP certification for the 7th consecutive year. The certificate signifies that agricultural practices of the school meet international standards. In other news from Kyoto a tea wholesaler from Kyotanabe City has won the National Tea Judging Skills Competition. The competition involves tea professionals under the age of 40 and this year 140 people took part at the national level.
Among other news the convenience store chain 7 Eleven has rolled out freshly brewed tea, called ‘seven tea’, in a few select shops. The hope is to expand it across the whole network from 2024. Another convenience store chain – Lawson, announced that from December it is switching to 100% recycled plastic for its original bottled drinks including hojicha, jasmine tea, rooibos tea and others.
On sustainability and waste reduction, one of the largest tea companies in Japan – Ito En has teamed up with the domestic stationary maker to produce recycled paper holders, that can hold A4 size paper. Paper holders are made using spent tea leaves that helps to reduce the need for raw paper pulp. Each folder contains the amount of tea leaves equivalent to making one bottle of Ito En’s tea.
In Fukuoka, new potato chips with matcha from Yame were released in November. The development of this new product took about a year and was timed with the 600 year anniversary of Yame tea. Continuing with the anniversary celebrations, tea tasting and selling events were held across the prefecture.
In Mie, Ise Tea Festival was held in Take Town to celebrate the local teas. During the festival 14 tea vendors from the prefecture opened their stalls, and participants could even taste some award winning sweets.
Ujiwatara City in Kyoto Prefecture is organizing a Chakabuki Challenge, where participants will receive a set of teas to brew at home and guess. Saijo City in Ehime Prefecture has also organized a tea tasting of the local tea – Ishizuchi kurocha. This year the production of this ancient tea has been designated as an important intangible folk cultural property.
The article is based on the Japanese media articles:
- Global GAP International Certification for Rough Tea Produced by High School Students in Kyoto, Japan, for the Seventh Year in a Row, Kyoto Shimbun 2023.11.03
- Potatoes with Yamecha Tea Flavor to be Released Today, Mainichi Shimbun 2023.11.06
- LAWSON uses plastic bottles as recycled material…reducing plastic by approximately 2,900 tons per year, Yomiuri Shimbun 2023.11.07
- Potato chips using Yamecha green tea… “An elegant aroma the moment you put them in your mouth”, Yomiuri Shimbun 2023.11.07
- Hokuzan’s Yushi Yamakita won the first prize at the National Tea Judging Contest, Mainichi Shimbun 2023.11.08
- “Tea-shell paper” made from upcycled tea leaves! ITO EN and King Jim jointly develop eco-friendly “paper holder, Mainichi Shimbun 2023.11.15
- Seven Cities and Towns Join Forces to Export Specialty Products: Tea to Europe, Fish to Asia, Asahi Shimbun 2023.11.15
- Two-stage fermentation “Ishizuchi Kurocha” tasting, highly praised by Japanese tea instructors, Asahi Shimbun 2023.11.16
- 7-Eleven, freshly brewed tea in-store, 1,000 stores in 3 years, Nikkei Shimbun 2023.11.17
- Ujitawara Town invites people to try tasting tea at home, Mainichi Shimbun 2023.11.24
- Yame-cha” tea, which originated 600 years ago, is being promoted at ACROSS, with tastings and sales, Mainichi Shimbun 2023.11.24
- What is the 3rd largest producer of tea? Ise Tea Festival at VISON in Taki Town, Asahi Shimbun 2023.11.30
Image source: Ujitawara City