For several generations, some of the finest teas in the world have been grown in the Shan Valley. Our first flush green tea coming from the Shan Valley has a uniquely fresh and clean taste that has been met with much enthusiasm by tea lovers around the world.
Tea has been grown throughout Asia for several thousand years. Tea from the Kyaukme Shan Valley is especially fine since it is uniquely suited to grow fine green tea that comes from the Camellia sinensis or tea plant. The altitude is high enough and wet enough to produce the high quality leaves that tea connoisseurs demand.
To grow a quality green tea, it takes between 3 years before these plants are ready for their first harvest. When tea is harvested, it is only the top one or two inches of the mature plant that are harvested. These tea plant buds are called flushes. It takes 7 - 15 days for a new flush to be produced. When teas take a little longer to reach this level of maturity, it tends to produce a better tasting tea. The second and third leaves are the only ones that are plucked in order to make the best tea. This is called fine plucking. Plucking more leaves along with the bud is called course plucking and produces teas of lesser quality. A tea bush will produce a few thousand leaves per year. While this may sound like a huge number of tea leaves, it produces roughly just one pound per bush in one year.
When the leaves for green tea are harvested, they are not left to oxidize. Generally, leaves that have been freshly harvested will be laid out and allowed to dry for between 8 -24 hours to allow most of the water that is contained within the leaf to evaporate. It is at this point that the leaves are steamed or even pan fried. This prevents oxidization which causes the leaves to appear more green than black teas, for example. The next portion of the process is to roll the leaves according to the type of tea that it is. The tea is then left for final drying before being packaged and sold.
Shan Valley offices are located in the United States but we work closely with our growers in the Shan Valley that help us to offer some of the greatest green tea available on the market today.