For centuries, Asians have enjoyed green tea, or sencha tea as it is called in Japanese, for its nutritional benefits and flavoursome taste.
Green tea is harvested from the same plant as black tea, Camellia sinensis. However, green tea is harvested at a younger age, and does not use traditional roasting methods. This helps it retain more of its nutrients and antioxidants.
Studies have shown that green tea may help combat seasonal allergies, improve eye and oral health, reverse the signs of ageing, increase mental and physical endurance, assist with weight loss, and dramatically reduce the risk of cancer-causing cells. The tea's high levels of polyphenols, catechins and various other types of flavonoids strengthens the body’s natural immune system.
Green tea production began in Victoria in 1994. There are 5 commercial growers, but only one is certified organic. The leaves are grown in Victoria’s high country and processed in Australia’s only green tea processing plant in Wangaratta.
The teas are blended and packed by the Yarra Valley Tea Company in Coldstream, a wholly owned and operated Australian business founded by Garrick Hicks & Meaghan Grace back in 2006. They not only supply Melbourne metropolitan and the rest of Australia, but include export markets in Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai, Japan, Taiwan and China. Their products are currently served and sold in nearly 50 outlets in Singapore, and another 35 in Hong Kong.
Their unique green tea blends are called Uncle Vic and Aunt Myrtle, a blend including lemon myrtle, a Queensland native plant, to provide a rejuvenating experience that improves the body’s natural detoxification and relaxation abilities. The blends are available in both loose leaf and biodegradable pyramid bags.
Yarra Valley Tea Co. also operates the Yarra Valley Tea Emporium, at Shop 15, 4 North Gateway, Coldstream, also supplying fine China teapots, cups, mugs and tea-wares. It welcomes visitors from Monday to Friday 10am-4pm.
For more information, visit yarravalleytea.com.au or phone 9739 0803.