The Difference Between Japanese Matcha and Chinese Green Tea Powder

While Green Tea Powder has been in existence for centuries there are stark differences between Japanese Matcha and Tea that is made from other regions such as China and to a small extent Thailand.  Since China is a big player in tea, it is the easiest to make the comparisons between “Matcha” made in China and Matcha made in Japan.  China originally produced Green Tea Powder which historians estimate was during the Tang Dynasty, possibly as early as the year 620.  Yet it wasn’t until almost the year 1200 when Buddhist monks brought the Chinese methods of preparing tea over to Japan.  It was the Japanese monks however that developed their own procedures and methods for the preparation of their Green Tea Powder.  Their Green Tea Powder made in Japan became known as Matcha.

When we fast forward to modern times we see that the Japanese are still big on Matcha tea.  At the same time, the Chinese have also started to become big players in Green Tea Powder.  However nowadays the Chinese also call their Green Tea Powder …… Matcha tea.  The big issue in the industry is that many consumers, vendors and distributors do not know there are stark differences between Matcha tea made in Japan and “Matcha” produced in China.  They assume that Matcha is Matcha.  The reality is that Matcha from different regions grows of the world grows differently, is harvested differently and even tastes differently.  As an analogy one can consider fruits and vegetables grown in different regions of the world.  For example, avocados, oranges, melons, squash all have different varieties, grow in different shapes and possess different beneficial properties for the body.  The same is true of tea and Japanese Matcha is distinct from the other countries claiming to produce Matcha.

Japanese Matcha is known to be different than Chinese Matcha.  One of the biggest differences is that the Japanese shade their tea plants for a period of  3 weeks before harvest, which helps encourage additional nutrients to be created into the leaf.  This actually causes the Japanese leaves to turn a deeper green in color, as more chlorophyll is produced during the shading.  The Chinese Matcha is actually a much different color than the Japanese Matcha and it even tastes a little different.  Chinese Matcha is generally a brownish yellow color while the Japanese Matcha is a vibrant green color.

Much of the produced Japanese Matcha that is certified organic.  When Matcha grows organically, the farmers are not able to use any sort of ferilizers, herbicides or pesticides.  The Japanese also have an organization known as the “Japan Organic and Natural Food Association (JONA)” which oversees all of the organic farming practices in Japan.  Tea grown in China has far less oversight and scrutiny in terms of organic standards.  Farmers in China also have many more options in the use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides and potential pollutants.  Matcha from China can also be grown with cheaper grades of plants.  Since there is no overall agency watching over the quality and the care that is taking place, the quality of Matcha from China tends to be inferior to that grown in Japan.  Any of these shortcuts used can affect the taste, smell, and overall quality of the tea that is produced and they can also affect the beneficial properties that the tea can offer the human body.

At Healing Butterfly we want only the best ingredients in our products and we purchase our Matcha tea from a JONA certified organic farm near the city of Nishio, Japan.  It is an area that is world renown for growing, harvesting and producing high-quality Matcha Green Tea Powder.  The Matcha that we purchase is 100% Culinary Grade A Organic Matcha.  Our Matcha is free from pesticides, adulterants, and other potentially harmful pollutants.  Our Matcha tastes great and makes you feel great with nutrients that naturally uplift your mood and increase mental focus.  While Japanese Matcha is more expensive than Chinese Green Tea Powder, we feel that the quality and the benefits are worth the expense.

Just remember when comparing Matcha Tea brands — if you want authentic Matcha with the maximum health benefits, buy Japanese 100% Organic Matcha.  You can purchase our products here.