History of Temomi Cha and the Development of Hand Made Tea Method in Japan

According to historical records, the Temomi CHA method of producing tea was first introduced around 1400 by a Zen priest who used hand processing techniques to create long, thin tea leaves. Later, in 1835, a tea merchant named Kahei Yamamoto invented the Gyokuro processing method which improved the hand processing techniques used to create tea. In 1838, Tokichi Sakamoto invited tea producers from Uji to build a tea processing factory and furnace in Ikumi village, Shizuoka prefecture, which helped to spread the knowledge and skills of tea processing in the area for three years, leading to the creation of over ten successors.

As tea export increased in the mid-1800s, new processing methods such as Kokuri and Denkuri were developed, leading to the formation of several schools of hand-made tea production. In 1905, these schools united to form a standardized hand-made method for green tea production. While skilled producers could create shiny, deep green needle-shaped Sencha using the hand-made method, it was a time-consuming process and difficult to learn. As a result, mechanization was introduced.

To preserve the art of hand-made tea production, eight individuals founded the Shizuoka Hand Made Tea Club in 1959. This group holds various events, including lessons, competitions, and exhibitions, to improve and promote the skills of hand-made tea production.

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