There are a variety of operations and processes involved in manufacturing Japanese green tea, from tea field cultivation to tea factory processing, and our highly-skilled team of experts are dedicated to the art of growing and making tea.
Tea fields to Crude tea (Aracha)
At factories in the areas where tea is grown, freshly picked raw tea leaves are processed into the semi-finished product of crude tea. Crude tea is not usually sold to end users since the leaves are of non-uniform size and shape, and they contain too much moisture and have a "grassy" aroma.
Crude tea to Final products
Crude tea is uneven in shape and its moisture content is still high, meaning it can easily deteriorate. For these reasons, crude tea does not yet have the value of a finished product. Consequently, it requires secondary processing before it can be sold as a finished product. This enables it to be stored and allows the final product to be adapted to local consumer tastes. Its value as a final product is increased by both appearance and content. This process is so important that each company within the tea manufacturing industry keeps it a secret.
Secondary processing involves drying, sorting, cutting and shaping, and grading using blown air and electrical sensitivity. Blending is carried out according to tastes in the consuming region and price. Specific methods and procedures are extremely complex and vary depending on the factory at which they are performed. Broadly speaking, there are two main approaches. Under the pre-roasting method, the crude tea is roasted, sorted, and shaped, while under the post-roasting method, the crude tea is first shaped and sorted according to shape and weight and is then roasted to the optimum level for each size.