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dogma_i dogma_i is offline
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Default "Special" tea farming in China?

The only really memorable, not to say stunning, Long Jing I've brewed
was delivered unto us by an acquaintance with diplomatic ties. The
precious pinch came from a secured harvest said not to exceed what a
single supply officer could easily carry. I was impressed by the
provenance; more by the savor.

An article in this week's New Yorker sheds some light, and whets the
less-connected gweilo's appetite for access to such treasures.

Still, one is sobered somewhat in recalling that said gweilo hath not
only ready access to at least the second- or third-best produce of a
whole world of diverse tea-producing regions, each with its own many and
special characteristics; but also, even "just" among those of Chinese
origin, readier access to much of that empire's own output at levels of
quality, price and freshness that may rise above what has historically
been available to all but the most celestial ranks of the imperium.

Life is good, mostly. May you enjoy in good health and good company many
a stimulating cup in the year to come.


December 22, 2011
Is a Clue to Chinas Future on Its Dinner Tables?
Posted by Evan Osnos

.... it was grim news last fall when Chinese reporters uncovered a
network of €śspecial farms€ť dedicated to providing Party leaders with
top-quality vegetables, chicken, pork, rice, beef, fish, and tea oil. In
the province of Zhejiang, for instance, forty €śhigh-class eco-farms€ť
were said to have been earmarked to supply the land-resource department,
water conservancy, agricultural units, and other government offices.
(What are we to make of the fact that the offices receiving special food
are exactly the ones overseeing the publics supply?)

Historically, the leaders of the Peoples Republic maintained
tegong€”special supply€”farms, but in the nineteen-nineties the irony
became too much (or too public) to bear, and they were thought to be
shut down. But it seems they are thriving ...