One kilogram of freshly rolled Japanese tea leaves produced in the central Japanese region of Shizuoka Prefecture sold for a record 1.96 million yen (about $15,466) at the season’s first auction, which took place on Monday.
The leaves of green tea were harvested in Fujinomiya and sold at the Shizuoka Japan Tea Market’s biannual auction to ring in the latest harvest. Shizuoka Prefecture is renowned in Japan for its green tea. Market officials have said that even though this year’s tea grew a little slower than usual, but the quality of the tea is good.
At a formal event at the market’s headquarters, its president Yasuhide Uchino stated that despite the constant rise in raw materials and fuel costs, the market “is striving to ensure it offers tasty tea at reasonable costs.”
The bell signaling the beginning of business rang around 7 a.m. Then, agricultural workers and tea traders were seen negotiating prices using Japanese “soroban” Abacuses. The sound of clapping was heard when deals were successful.
“We could acquire tea with a good shape and colour,” said a satisfied Natsuki Wada, 35, a wholesaler of processed teas located within Shizuoka city.
Trading was also conducted for teas grown outside of Shizuoka Prefecture, including from Kagoshima Prefecture in Okinawa’s southwestern prefectures. It is anticipated to be the best time to do tea hand-rolling in late April.
It was reported at 8:10 a.m. that the Shizuoka Japanese Tea Market announced had the trading volume of the Shizuoka-grown tea of 1,732 kg, with an average price per kilogram of 5,027 yen.
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