Japan Defense Focus No.112 Jun. 2019

COLUMN

Tea Harvesting

Tea Harvesting

Shizuoka prefecture is located on the side of Pacific Ocean almost in the middle of the country. Shizuoka prefecture is Japan’s leading tea producing place, Tea plants bud from late April to early May.

In Japan, the word “tea” is usually referred to as “Nihon-cha” (Japanese tea), but is also called “Ryoku-cha” (green tea).

Japanese people have loved tea for centuries. Especially popular ones are a medium-grade green tea called “Sen-cha,” a finely-ground green tea called “Matcha,” and a roasted green tea called “Houjicha.”

Teas that are especially astringent, bitter, or savory tend to be rich in health-boosting compounds like catechin, caffeine, and vitamins.

In Spring, visitors to tea plantations located in Shizuoka prefecture can experience “Chatsumi” (tea harvesting) or “Temomi,” (the traditional matcha manufacturing process in which tea leaves are hand-rolled over a dryer). They can also experience the traditional method of serving tea to guests called “Chaseki” (tea ceremony).

The Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) Hamamatsu Air Base is located in Hamamatsu City in Shizuoka prefecture. This base is where the first JASDF squadron was stationed, making it the site of the origin of the JASDF. It currently is the location of the Air Training Command headquarters and the 1st Air Wing. The Air Festa Hamamatsu 2019 is scheduled to be held on there on October 20th.

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