A flood of inferior quality tea – Mobile phones provide the answer

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Since the opening up of Taiwan to mainland tourists, Alishan has become one of the most popular tourist attractions in the country. Simultaneously, Alishan High-mountain Tea become a much sought after souvenir and gift for the hoards of mainlanders that visit the area each year. Shrewd business consortiums got an early foothold in the area, snatching up all the best shop locations and building a first-rate tea plaza where they could lure all incoming mainland tourists. Tour coach after tour coach of tourists who are unfamiliar with Taiwanese tea and the area make their way into the exclusive tea plaza.

 

It is an open secret that after sampling some tea and undergoing a sales pitch by attractive young women the unsuspecting customers often part with several thousand NTD for low quality tea. In other words, local tea growers and tribes in the area are not directly benefitting from the presence of so many mainland tourists in the Alishan region. Local tea growers believe this ‘inferior’ tea that has been unscrupulously brought into the area will slowly undermine the name of Alishan Tea - a brand they have worked hard to develop over the last ten years or so. President of Taiwan Tea Association, HsuehWen-yi, and other members of the association have worked hard to come up with a novel idea to protect the interests of consumers and tea farmers alike – the ‘Product Transparency and Authenticity Scheme’.

 

In the scheme, consumers can simply use their smartphone to scan the barcode on the back of the tea carton and are able to see the whole production process of the product, including management of the tea plantation, picking, processing and packing. The scheme uses the most advanced technology and is currently the most reliable way to ensure product authenticity. The scheme’s stamp of approval provides customers with a guarantee, but unfortunately, as yet not all local tea growers have agreed to participate. The association and its members are currently working hard to persuade all local tea growers of the benefits of the scheme and the importance of protecting the prestigious name of Alishan Tea. The job is proving extremely tough, but everyone involved is in agreement that if the name of Alishan Tea can be protected, no matter how difficult the job, it will all be worth it.
 

PeoPo 公民新聞

A flood of inferior quality tea – Mobile phones provide the answer

URL:

http://www.peopo.org/portal.php?op=viewPost&articleId=101101

(以下是中文對照)

劣茶充斥‧手機來把關 影音 ( 公義使者 )

自開放陸客來台之後,阿里山成了主要的熱門景點,阿里山高山茶更是陸客指定購買的伴手禮,有財團早在阿里山公路沿線租下店面,打造頂級的茶品消費廣場,只 見遊覽車一部接著一部的駛向專屬消費區,對於台灣茶品市場並不熟悉的大陸客,被請至小房間泡茶之後,在「講師(販售小姐)」的聳恿下,動輒幾千塊台幣的 「劣茶」也大包大包的帶走,這是公開的秘密。換句話說;陸客上阿里山,沿 線的小茶農和沿線的部落並未直接受益,茶農們也擔心劣茶混入阿里山茶的惡劣行為,將拖垮茶農們幾十年建立的品牌。為此,嘉義縣茶葉協會會長薛文鎰與其會員 們,在公部門的協助下,推出「影像式生產履歷」,消費者只要利用手機掃瞄茶葉罐背面的專屬條碼,就可以清楚看到這罐茶葉的所有生產過程,包括茶園管理、採 摘、製程、包裝等,是最先進也是最可靠的生產履歷。薛文鎰表示:這張茶葉「身分證」是信用的保證,遺憾的是沿線茶農尚未全數加入協會,目前協會幹部仍然持 續努力的與所有茶農溝通推廣,為了守住阿里山茶的信譽,這段路走來辛苦,卻相當值得。

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A flood of inferior quality tea – Mobile phones provide the answer

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