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MIYAZAKI PREFECTURE, KYUSHU:
MORIMOTO FAMILY'S ORGANIC TEA GARDEN
The organic tea garden of Morimoto family is located on the southernmost of the four main islands of Japan, not far away from the town Miyazaki, in the homonymous prefecture.
The history of Morimoto green tea began, when the young couple founded their little enterprise with only one small tea garden. While over the years the Morimotos developed into a perfect team, also their experience in tea cultivation and also the size of their little business grew further. In the meantime the both Morimotos farm twelf small tea gardens, and built up their own production hall, which their mostly manage on their own. Sometimes, during the harvesting period other tea pickers who are friends of the Morimotos, help them, and sometimes also their both daughters.
One of the many characteristics of the Morimotos is the cultivation of seven variaties of tea bushes: Yabukita, Kanaya Midori, Oku Midori, Oku Yutaka, Minimi Sayaka, Sakimidori, and additionally the Assamica hybrid Benifuki. This many varieties of tea bushes and newly one further variation, which in some years will perhaps be the basis for a totally new culture of tea bushes, is the fundament of blending tea leaves of the different bushes, in order to allow different nuances of flavor of the sorts of tea, which are finally drunk.
Furthermore, the many different varietes of tea bushes demonstrate a concept, which is very representative for the Morimotos: Apart from the different nuances of flavor, they also show different characterstics how they react on climatical conditions and on varmints like insects. In case that one variety of tea bushes is suffering in one year due to any reason, for example caused by insects, this does not mean that also the other variations suffer damage, and therefore it does not mean all the harvesting will be damaged. The many different varieties are also a symbol of the Morimotos' liking of diversity.
The fact that the Morimotos think about such things like diversity is not untypical for japanese organic farmers. This is very reasonable, since they are not producing organic tea, because they hope for higher profit or for getting better market opportunities, but because they consider it to be a precious goal, to produce natural tea in an environment, which is characterized by ecological balance.
Haruyo makes fantastic MORIMOTO MATCHA shakes. The MARIMO brothers took this video in April 2012 in Miyazaki Prefecture, Kyushu, Japan, in the organic green tea garden of the Morimotos, together with all 4 generations of Morimoto family.