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All About Taiwan Green Tea

Taiwan is home to some of the best tasting green tea in the world. The island is often overshadowed by Mainland China varieties such as Longjing in addition to Sencha and Matcha varieties in Japan. Although production is limited, Taiwan boasts some of the most fragrant and sweet tasting green tea known to the world.

Types of Taiwan Green Tea

There are 3 main types of green tea in Taiwan:

  • Biluochun
  • Longjing
  • Bachuan

Taiwan Biluochun – The Most Popular Taiwanese Green Tea

Among the green teas in Taiwan, Biluochun takes the lead in production, popularity, and taste. Cultivated in the Sanxia District of New Taipei City, its leaves are slender, curved and produce a delightful sweetness. Taiwanese Biluochun is harvested yearly during the Spring and Summer months provided there are no hurricanes or draughts. There is virtually no grass taste to this tea, and it is closer to an aroma of a very sweet Oolong.

We here at Qiful Life work directly with a master farmer in the Sanxia District who has won awards for his green tea production. The tea is an excellent warm weather drink for the Spring and Summer.

Taiwan Longjing Tea

Taiwan’s Longjing tea stands apart from its mainland counterpart, with different tea tree varieties contributing to its unique taste. Grown in the Three Gorges area of New Taipei City, Taiwan Longjing boasts a clear, yellow-green hue and a delicate aroma. Production for Taiwanese Longjing is extremely limited and in recent years most farmers or producers export the tea to Japan.

Bachuan Green Tea

Compared to Biluochun, Bachuan green tea offers a mellower and more fragrant experience, enriched with the essence of jasmine flowers. As a scented tea, Bachuan stands as a distinctive choice among green teas, attracting a dedicated group of enthusiasts. However, most tea farmers consider Jasmine tea in Taiwan its own category that is nestled between Green and Oolong. Bachuan production is also highly lim

Origins of Taiwan Green Tea Production

The inception of green tea production in Taiwan predates that of black tea; however, it has lagged behind in export sales compared to its counterparts. Oolong tea and Baozhong tea from Taiwan saw substantial exports as early as the Qing Dynasty, gaining momentum during the Japanese colonial period. Despite the successful export of Baozhong tea and the development of black tea during this period, green tea struggled with minimal export records until 1919.

In the Japanese colonial era, green tea exports reached a peak of 280,000 kilograms in 1933. Nevertheless, these figures were overshadowed by the export dominance of oolong tea, Baozhong tea, and black tea. The question arises: why didn’t Taiwanese green tea thrive during this period?

Primarily, Taiwan specialized in the production of partially fermented tea, and the private sector lacked the means to develop or implement technology for large-scale green tea production. The Japanese government, apprehensive about Taiwan’s potential impact on its domestic green tea industry, intentionally hindered the development of green tea in Taiwan, favoring support for the black tea industry instead.

Despite these challenges, green tea did find its place in Taiwanese production during the Japanese occupation. Notably, Longjing tea emerged from the Three Gorges area in 1919, marking the first instance of Taiwanese green tea export. Additionally, small quantities of Japanese sencha teas were produced to cater to the Japanese residing in Taiwan, while generous teas were manufactured and sold to the three northeastern provinces.

Biluochun’s tea making origin hails from the Dongting Mountains in Jiangsu, China. In China, Biluochun is known as the “terrifying fragrance” due to its exceptional aroma and exquisite taste. Production for the tea became popular in the mid to late 1900s.

Where to Find Quality Green Tea from Taiwan?

When it comes down to it, consumers need to find a reputable producer or distributor that has production in Sanxia. Tea growing areas in Sanxia are limited since this area is small compared to other tea growing regions in Taiwan, yet alone larger green tea areas in Asia. We here at Qiful Life do have access to such connections and sell award winning Taiwanese green teas here.