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Taiwan tea show

  • Introduction Generally speaking, tea refers to young buds and leaves plucked from tea plants, processed and finally brewed for consumption. There are many chemical components in tea, such as caffeine, vitamins, tannin and catechins etc. Tea has been an important daily drink to Chinese people for a long time. The Chinese people are used to drinking tea if they fell thirsty. Drinking tea would make people fell pleasant because of its unique aroma, flavor and taste. Tea has been reported to have refreshing, calming and health benefits.  Production and Marketing Currently, there are about 20,000 ha of tea farms in Taiwan, producing about 20,000 tons of tea in every year, mainly distributing in Taipei, Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Miaoli, Nantou, ChiaI, Yunlin, Kaohsiung, Taitung, Hualien and Ilan counties. The tea industry in Taiwan was export-oriented in the past. Tea exports reached a high record of 23,516 tons. Tea exports were on the decline over the years. Tea exports were 2,592 tons in 2002. The sustainable increase of domestic consumption is due to economic prosperity and the rising level of living standards as well as to the increasing consumption. Though tea farms are diminishing gradually, the qualities of Taiwan tea are highly appreciated by domestic and international markets. Carrying tea as a gift when traveling abroad is very popular.   The types of teas produced in Taiwan include green tea, Paochong tea, Oolong tea and black tea. In order to meet consumers’ demands, major types of teas produced currently in Taiwan are Paochong tea and Oolong tea. Black tea and green tea are minor types.  R & D of Tea Technology The administrations responsible for tea improvement are at the central level, the Council of Agriculture (COA) and at the local level, the city and county governments, the township office and the farmers' association. The Tea Research and Extension Station (TRES) was set up especially for conducting experimental and extension work on tea breeding, cultivation, mechanization, management, manufacturing skill and multiple products. The Yuchih Branch was established at Yuchih, Nantou. It's responsible for the development of the production and marketing associated with medium & high altitude tea gardens and black tea in central Taiwan. The Wunshen Branch was established at Shihding, Taipei. It's responsible for the improvement of Paochong tea in northern part of Taiwan. The Taitung Branch was established at Luyeh, Taitung. It's responsible for the tea development in east Taiwan. The Tungding Branch was established at Luku, Nantou, responsible for the R & D of Tungding Oolong tea in middle part of Taiwan.  Many tea cultivars are extended and grown in Taiwan. Each cultivar has its unique agronomic characteristics and qualities for manufacturing different aroma and flavor of teas. There are five types of tea cultivars that are suitable for manufacturing green tea, Paochong and Oolong teas, Pomfong tea, Tieh-Kuan-Yin tea, and black tea. The commonly cultivated or high-quality tea cultivars are Chin - Shin - Oolong, Chin-Shin-dahpan, TTES No.12 (Chinhsuan), TTES No.13 (Tzuiyu) and Shy-Jih-Chue etc. To help the public understand that the security of tea farms can be maintained under reasonable cultivation and usage, and to educate tea farmers to use correct cultivation, and to emphasize soil and water conservation, the TRES has also gauged and established a slopeland conservation demonstration tea farm, providing a place for teaching and demonstrating tea soil and water conservation. In order to provide consumers healthy tea drinks and protect the natural ecology and environment, organic farming has been promoted and adopted in many tea fields recently. That's a tea field that avoids using chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Organic fertilizers are used in the tea field for tea growing. Non-pesticide controls are used on pests and diseases of tea plants, especially that of biological control methods. The research, development and extension of TRES mainly focus on developing related organic technology.
  • Miscellaneous Tea Produced in TaiwanTea is a beverage product; taste preferences of consumers don't appear to be the same. The natural environments are suitable for tea cultivation and production in many regions of Taiwan. Through few past decades, special aromas and flavors of Taiwan's various teas have been developed, including Paochong, Tungding Oolong & Pomfong teas. We would like to introduce some of the characteristics and producing areas of seven major teas produced in Taiwan.(1) Green tea: It's a non-fermented tea. There's no withering and fermentation in manufacturing process. The first processing step is panning. Because of different manufacturing ways, the green tea are divided into two categories mainly, one is steamed panning green tea, whose most famous example is the “Sencha” exporting to Japan, and the other is fried panning green tea, such as “Long-Gin” tea, and “Bi-Lo-Chun”. The shape of tea leaves of “Sencha” or “Long-Gin” tea is similar to that of sword and looks green with white pekoes. Its tea liquors look like jade with slightly yellow, and taste fresh. The major producing areas for the green tea are located in Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Miaoli and Taipei counties.(2) WunShan Paochong tea: The producing area for the tea is located in northern mountain areas. Pinlin, Shidin and Hsintien of Taipei county are famous places for the WunShan Paochong tea production. The shape of Wen-Shen tea is deep-green curl. The tea is special for its light golden-green liquor color and fragrant aroma. Its faintly sweet and smoothness taste comforts your throat.(3) Semi-ball type Paochong tea: This tea has a common name, "Tungding Oolong Tea". Its original producing area was mountain regions, altitude 500 ~ 800 meters, in Luku of Nantou county. In recent years, its producing area has extended to Minjian, Jhushan townships, Nantou county and many other areas in Taiwan. Tungding Oolong tea is unique for its ball-rolling processing step, tea leaves are so tight that look like a semi-ball type. The appearance is deep green. The liquor color is bright golden-yellow. The aroma is heavy. The mellow and thick taste usually lasts very long in the tongue and throat after drinking the tea.(4) Tieh-Kuan-Yin tea: This tea is partially fermented, with similar processing of semi-ball type Paochong tea. Its tea leaves are first roasted slightly and then jammed inside clothe bags and rolled into ball-shaped, and is repeatedly rolled by hands. The tea bags are then roasted over bamboo roaster under “medium warm heat” to make tea leaves curved and shrinking. Such step is repeated few times under roasting. The components of tea will be transformed to the one with special aroma and flavor after roasted. This tea still maintains its original aroma and flavor after brewing for few times. The tea liquor color is orange yellow, but slightly red. The taste is mellow, thick, sweet and smooth, but slightly astringent. The flavor of Tieh-Kuan-Yin tea is something like that of pure, normal but weak fruit acid. The hometown of Tieh-Kuan-Yin tea manufacturing is Mutza and Shimen, both located in northern part of Taiwan.(5) White-tip Oolong tea (or "PomFong tea"): The more white tips there are, the more qualities they have. It is the most special and famous tea in Taiwan. It is only produced in Taiwan among other producing countries. Its processing raw materials are young leaves and tips, which are sucked by the smaller green leafhopper. Then the fermentation process is controlled by hands to make this tea owning special honey and also matured fruit aroma. The major producing areas of white-tip Oolong tea are located in Peipu, Omei, Hsinchu county and Touwu, Toufern, Miaoli county. Shihding, Taipei county and Longtan townships, Taoyuan county have also started to produce and marketing this tea in the last few years. White-tip oolong tea looks mixing white, yellow, red, brown and like flowers. Its liquor color looks shiny amber, tastes durable and refreshing.(6) High-mountain tea: The high-mountain tea refers to the tea produced from the tea gardens located at altitude of over 1000 meters and is commonly called as high-mountain oolong tea and its major producing areas include the newly-developed tea areas in the mountains between 1,000~1,300 meters in ChiayI county and Nantou county. Because it is cold in mountain areas with heavily cloudy in the morning and evening and shorter average sunshine period, the catechin contents in tea leaves tastes are less. The theanine and other soluble nitrogen contained in the tea leaves are higher than other teas have. Tea leaves and buds are tender. The mesophyll is thick and pectin contents are high. Hence high-mountain teas have some characteristics, such as black-green appearance, sweet taste, refined aroma and enduring brewing etc.(7) Black tea: It's a fully fermented tea. The good quality black tea is made from Assam tea plants that are grown in Puli, Yuchih of Nantou county and Juisui of Hualien county. Meanwhile, the TRES has propagated and extended the new cultivar-TTES No. 18 since 1999 in Yuchih, and this tea smells like natural cinnamon and fresh mint and is pretty popular among consumers.
  • How to Brew and Taste TeaThere are many ways of brewing and drinking tea. Every way that owns its advantages and disadvantage is introduced as follows:1. Brewing with pottery & porcelain or glass cups: For personal brewing at home or in the office, those cups are usually used to prepare tea. It's an easy and convenient method. As tea leaves always steep in tea liquor, therefore, tea liquor always produce unpleasant bitterness and astringency.2. Brewing with a big teapot: For meeting or family consumption, a big teapot is usually used to prepare tea. This method is more practical based on the constant ratio of volume of teas to waters. The general standard ratio is one to fifty. Steep the tea for 5 to 6 minutes before serving. After pouring tea liquors into the serving pot and then drinking the tea to enjoy the pleasant flavor and taste.3. Brewing with tea ceremony: Chinese tea ceremony has its peculiarities and uniqueness. At first, you should have one set of tea utensils including teapot, teacups, tea bowl, tea boat, serving pot, tea towel and teakettle etc. The proper way of brewing tea is introduced as follows: Use the tea scoop to take some of the tea from the tea canister to put into the teapot. The tea should be filled 1/4 to 1/3 full of the teapot. Normally, don’t add too much tea leaves if the tea leaves are already highly shrinking.‚ After pouring boiling water (mixing 75~80℃ water with green tea) into the teapot, brew the tea for about one minute. After brewing, pour the tea liquors into the serving pot. In order to make tea liquors uniformly light or heavy in each drinking cup, the tea liquors should be swirled back and forth before it is poured into the cups. Some people firstly brew tea for few seconds and then pour the tea into tea cups and serving cup, and then dump the tea liquor away without drinking it. That is for increasing the temperatures of tea cups, teapot, and serving cup to promote the tea leaves evaporating tea aroma. This process is called as “Warm and Moisture mixing”.ƒ For the second brewing, boiling water is again poured into the teapot. However, for each serving, normally wait about 15 to 20 seconds more over the last serving for tea to set down.
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  • Introduction of the traceability system in agricultural products    The traceability system in other words is like a network of protection that ensures the products are sanitized and safe from the farms all the way till it reaches its final destination, which would be the dining table. With the rise of both national income and the living standards, peoples’demands towards the quality and safety regulations of agricultural products’strictness have risen. Producers in accordance with the Taiwan Good Agricultural Practice (TGAP) log and produce goods. After issued a certificate, they can attain a traceability system mark. Consumers can enter the code on the mark to this website (http://taft.moa.gov.tw)and find out everything from manufacturing to shipping online.    Setting the traceability system into action with a sanitation network in coordination with a safe traceable environment, customers can clearly see everything from starting line of manufacturing till the end. With this system consumers can really be satisfied with our product and enjoy it even more.
  • Introduction to Geographical Indications and labels   Currently countries from all over the world are promoting Geographical Indications. With geographical indications it is possible to know where the product is from and know about its unique natural habitat, civilization, producing environments and technology. In addition to weather, soil conditions, and traditional ways of producing, this gives the product its uniqueness and flavor. Not only is this a high quality guarantee for consumers, but it can also help keep the competitive advantage of the product that the country of origin holds.   In recent years, different tea areas in Taiwan have developed its own unique flavor, like the WenShan pouchong tea, Dong Ding Oolong Tea, Ali mountain high mountain tea and Sun Moon Lake black tea. Applying Geographical Indications through the certificate of origins, production quality have grown as well as product value in marketing. Consumers’rights are protected this way and it can also raise our international goodwill in producing tea in international trades.   Each certification unit has made strict terms towards issuing labels. Issuing related procedures are as of below: Confirming domestic production and origin: Tea applicants have to provide related proof of domestic production. The certification unit will then perform inspections on site towards the number of teas in its area requested for labeling, cross checking with the paper work admitted, ensuring its legitimacy. Confirming tea sanitation and safety: The amount of pesticide residues for tea applicants have to meet national standards. Confirming the quality of tea: The certification unit forms a special quality inspection unit and performs sensory evaluation of the tea’s taste, aroma, liquor color, and infused tea leaves. Tea applicants must meet local quality standards in order to attain the label. Confirming the safe keeping of labels: The confirmation unit performs quality control for its labels ensuring the credibility of the label.   After issuing the certificate of origin label, the unit will perform spontaneous checkups towards the quality of the tea and serial number on the labels. Consumers can find out more information in authenticating products by entering the serial number on its labels assuring ones rights.
  • Introduction to the establishment and guidance in forming the High quality producing zones     In order to provide tea of high quality to consumers, which are sanitized and safe, in addition to promoting a high quality image towards the tea producing network, coordination became into existence. From the 2010, the Agriculture and Food Agency, Tea and Beverage Research Station along with the local government, started to promote a collaboration of a high quality zone for producing, promoting, and marketing. Counsel tea factories, farmer groups or tea merchants with marketing capabilities to cooperate with tea farmers. This includes meeting standards for tea producing, branding tea, and delicate packaging.     With this collaboration, the range of business for the industry has increased with lower production costs. Tea producing factories follow along with standardized field management producing and processing tea. All of the teas are sorted and acquired by this group. With diverse marking, the group has become stable and profitable, which means a double win for farmers and producers making them able to compete domestically and internationally.
  • Introduction to guiding and the establishment of a safe and sanitized tea factories    In order to make (healthy, efficiency, sustainable management) practicable as an agriculture policy, the Ministry of Agriculture took action. From 2011 the Ministry started to promote sanitized tea processing factories and processing environments. Guiding tea farmers to embrace the concept of a sanitized production environment and raising tea production in order to establish a safe, sanitized way of tea production in Taiwan. This includes an effective way of processing tea leaves from the farms, a sanitized procedure of making tea, and the safe management of the processing factories.    The guidance sessions are aiming towards factories in the primary stages of tea production, which includes withering, panning, and drying. Guiding factory manager, working farmers or those who plan on purchasing tea leaves the correct field managing procedure. In coordination with the Taiwan Good Agricultural Practice (TGAP) carrying out fertilizer control and pesticide control, reporting production and farming journals in order to put the network of tea production safety into practice. During production, each stations chief should ensure the safety and sanitation of the tea, from withering to drying and performing environmental hygienic inspections. Inspections should meet the standards set by the Ministry of Agriculture and the local government, with addition to reporting tea production journals in order to make a safe and sanitized environment for quality tea production.
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