Can "Wakocha" Be a Household Word?

Mitsui Norin Co.,Ltd, one of the major beverage and food manufacturers, announced that they will put the "wakocha (Japanese black tea) tea bag" on the market this autumn. 

Now, since the tea is often sold directly from the tea farmers, it will be the first wakocha to be sold by a major company and available throughout the nation. Although it seems a little more expensive than the teas that they have now, it can be a good chance for wakocha to become a "household name". Many tea people -- including me -- are pinning our hopes on it. 

- photo by Nihon Shokuryo Shinbun online news -


Morning Ritual of Drinking Tea

Japanese people of old times would believe the power of "morning tea". They considered it as the one to ward off accidents. Knowing that there are many proverbs related to morning tea in Japan, you may understand what it means.

To name but a few.....here are some proverbs related to morning tea.
   1) Drinking tea in the morning before you go out avoids trouble.
   2) It’s good sign if a tea stem floats upright in your morning tea.
   3) If you set out on a trip without drinking morning tea, you have to go back to drink even if  you have to turn back halfway.
   4) Drinking tea in the morning brings more good luck to you.   

In practice, drinking tea (especially sencha) in the morning is also good for you at the time of this year to protect from ultra-violation. It is because that the tea is rich in Vitamin C, which can remain even in infusion.

A morning tea is a must to protect yourself and your beauty, isn’t it?


Hospitality in Business World

When I started working at a company, which was more than 20 years ago, whenever the guests came, the female employees would serve a drink using a ceramic cup. It was common practice in general. Recently, that isn’t always the case. A friend of mine told me what happens to the company where she works. They buy drinks from the vending machine in the office and serve them. That can be more efficient, but I was not sure if it becomes a common practice.

I found a survey about “hospitality to the guest at the workplace”.
1)Do you serve the guests with a drink at your office?  
     Yes 86%
2) What kind of cup do you use? (a multiple-response questionnaire)
      Pottery/porcelain  76%
      Glass  58%
      Paper cup 16%
3) What kind of drink do you serve? (a multiple-response questionnaire)  
      Japanese tea 87%
      Coffee 85%
4) Do you feel bad to use a paper cup for the guests?
     Yes 53%
     No 47%
According this survey, a lot of company still use pottery or porcelain for drink. Regarding 4), 10 years ago, 66% of people felt bad to use a paper cup. Compared with it, the rate is declined, but still more than half of people feel reluctant to use paper cups. 

In order to show the feeling of  "omotenashi”, which is heartfelt hospitality, “how to serve” seems to be still important in Japanese business field.

Kamairicha made by Mr Kajihara in Kumamoto

Japan usually has a lot of rain this time of year. We need it to some extent. However, the situations are getting much worse, much more ext...