Friday, August 8, 2008
Taiwan Tea to the Olympics
Two Taiwan teas picked as 'Olympic First Teas'
Taipei, Aug. 5 (CNA) Two high quality, Taiwan-grown organic teas were among 12 recognized by Beijing Olympics organizers as "Olympic First Teas, " the Association of Taiwan Tea said Tuesday.
The two winners from Taiwan were the premium "Yipaohong" black tea and "Yipaolong" oolong produced by the Fofashan Organic Ecology Tea Farm in Taichung, central Taiwan.
They defeated several thousand Chinese and Taiwanese farms in a "battle of the teas, " winning the right to be displayed and served along with 10 other teas at the Beijing International Media Center during the Olympics.
"It is an honor to have the chance to join the 'cultural' dimension of the Games, " said Buddhist monk Shang Lun, the founder of the Fofashan Temple that operates the organic tea farm.
Olympics organizers are displaying tea, porcelain and silk in Beijing as three core elements of Chinese culture.
Master Shang Lun built the Fofashan tea farm in Dakeng of the Taichung county 15 years ago to grow tea through natural cultivation -- that is, without using chemical fertilizers or herbicides.
Association of Taiwan Tea Secretary Liang Ming-chan touted the farm's organic tea as "Buddhist tea that is injected with the Zen spirit in its planting, production and consumption." Taiwan's teas were the only organic teas selected to be "Olympic First Teas."
The honor recognizes Taiwan's efforts to promote environmentally-friendly "green agriculture," Liang noted.
In July, Fofashan's Yipaolong tea won the top prize in the oolong category of a national organic tea competition co-sponsored by the Taichung-based association and the Agricultural and Food Agency. The Yipaohong was the top prize-winner in the black tea category in the 2007 competition.
Liang said that Beijing Olympics organizers screened popular tea products from around China and Taiwan, inviting more than 100 Taiwanese tea producers to enter their best teas in the contest.
Teas were selected in six categories: oolong tea, black tea, green tea, white tea, yellow tea, and dark tea. (By Elizabeth Hsu) ENDITEM /JA
From Central News Agency in Taiwan