Coming together to promote Chiran tea overseas


The stories say that it was warriors of the Heike family — who retreated and settled in remote areas all over Japan — who were the first to plant tea in the village of Temino, in Chiran.

But it was in 1872 that they seriously started growing  tea on the mountainous wild and barren land granted by the Shimazu Clan.  (Source: Chiran Tea History Book)

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Click on image to enlarge


In 1863, Mr. Okihachi KOISO, Mr. Sukegoro KOISO, and Mr. Ichizaemon YAMASHITA, from Kamibeppu Shimmaki village in Ei, brought back several tea seeds from Miyakonojo in Miyazaki, where they went to sell steel nails.

They planted them on a small hill called “Kowa zuka”. (Source: History Book of Ei Town Tea Industry Association)

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Tea production in Kawanabe  began in 1659. During the Kyoho Period (1716-1735), premium green tea was produced in the premise of Hofuku-ji Temple, one of the three major temples in Satsuma area (currently in Kagoshima and Miyazaki) under the patronage of the Shimazu family.

It was used as a tribute for the Shogun in Edo (Tokyo). The first tea processing machine in Kagoshima was introduced in 1896 in Kawanabe. (Source: Kawanabe Local History Book) 

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