In a country where warm and hot drinks are the lifeblood of the people, white tea is a rich and tasty favorite, especially in the Fujian Province in southeast China.
At PinPin tea farm, high in the hills above the city of Fuding, white tea production provides an enjoyable, economic livelihood for locals. In fact, more than half of Fuding's 600,000 people work in the tea industry.
"Everybody works together up here," said Ye Kemei, a tea farmer who has worked in the hills of Fuding for decades. "It's an important job since so many people like white tea."
Workers say tea is always in season in Fuding, thanks to the mild and moist winters, the plush, fertile land, and good growth conditions. "This tea field's high altitude lifts it high above pollution," said Zhang Zhaoji, PinPin's Marketing Director.
Once grown, the leaves make their way across town to the PinPin White Tea museum. Unlike some western teas which are bagged, boxed, and eventually steeped, white tea leaves go straight into hot water, releasing even more healthy antioxidants and nutrients.
"If you drink white tea frequently," says Wang Liyu, a tea aficionado at the museum, "It can help get rid of bad free radicals in your body, and it's also good for your skin."
The tea is also a hot export item, as many drinkers in Europe and the Americas have added Pin Pin white tea to their rituals. And speaking of rituals, if you stop by the museum at the right time of day, you might even witness the art of tea ceremony.
"The white tea culture is totally immersed into our daily lives," Wang Liyu added.
"Fuding is where white tea has its origins. Everyday, every family brews white tea."