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Japan's Earliest New Tea “Longevity Village Blessings Ogimi Tea”
post : 2014.11.11 16:00
In the northern part Okinawa Island in April the earliest tea in Japan is picked. Okinawa is not really known for its tea but first tea of the season in Okinawa has been recognized as having deep taste as that is rich and sweet. Buyers from major companies all over Japan secretly come to buy the high quality product.
According Yamajiro (age 59), a tea farmer in Ogimi, a village is known for it longevity, “Longevity Village Blessings Ogimi Tea” and “The First First Tea of the Season” has a comfortable fragrance and when it enters the throat you can feel the attractiveness of its depth.
In his over 9,900m2 tea, there is “Saemidori” a high quality tea with no almost bitterness. Yamajiro has been growing pesticide-free tea form about 30 years in Ogimi.
“In Okinawa ‘Yutakamidori’ is common but ‘Saemidori’ which is hard to grow and takes a lot of time, has a completely different taste.
He pays the most attention to grow without pesticides while keeping the quality of tea. “For example for insects I use island garlic and peppers instead of pesticides and for the fertilizer I mainly use organic matter was produced by EM (effective microorganisms). It goes with saying that farm was recognized by Okinawa as being pesticide-free.” The tea has both the certificate mark and safety mark of Okinawa Prefecture.
“When I ha young Ogimi was famous for having many tea fields and the elderly people who give out delicious tea but before anyone could notice tea farmers started disappearing. Making tea has a lot of manual labor but I want it to go back to those days.” Yamajiro told me these passionate and determined words with a warm and peaceful expression on his face.
With a gleam in his eyes he said “This year the harvest was about 2 tons of raw leaves, which is twice as much as last year’s harvest which was damage by typhoons. Compare to regular years when the tea made it will be a beautiful color,” showing his desire to have people both within and outside of Okinawa drink tea from Ogimi.
(From left to right)
Longevity Village Blessing Ogimi Tea (Tea Picked in May) 80g 380 yen
Longevity Village Blessing Ogimi Tea (First Picked Tea of the Season) 80g 650 yen
Value Pack Longevity Village Blessing Ogimi Tea 180g 570 yen
It during the hot season you can enjoy it cool as well.
With a focus of local production for local consumption, the tea is only sold in Okinawa. It is sold in Co-op Okinawa and roadside station (Roadside Station Ogimi is pictured
Operating Hours 9:00-6:00pm
It is a popular product so they normally sell out in June. If you are interest please check as soon you can.
Okinawa Clip Photowriter Kiwamu Ogawa (Qey Word)