Myung-In

“전통식품 명인 서양원인”
(Jeon-tohng-shik-poom Myung-in Seo-Yang-Won-een)

전통 (jeon-tohng) = traditional
식품 (shik-poom) = food products
명인 (myung-in) = master (person with excellent skills)
서양원 = Seo, Yang Won ((Founder & CEO of Hankook Tea)
인 (een) = mark/seal

Grand Master of Traditional Korean Foods

(명인 myung-in) is a distinguished title given to individuals in recognition of their extraordinary contributions in protecting and preserving the nation’s traditional agricultural methods, manufacturing processes and unique tastes of Korean culture. Since 1994, in effort to protect and preserve Korean food traditions, the South Korea Ministry of Agriculture has recognized individuals.

In 2008, Yang Won Seo (picture above and below), Founder and CEO of Hankook Tea Company, has been recognized as the 34th Grand Master of Traditional Korean Foods by the government for being a “master” at his craft, for his skillful technique in developing and crafting the artisan Hwang Cha (partially oxidized tea) and superior production of Matcha (powdered green tea).

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Haenam Tea Plantation

Location: Yeon-dong-ri, Haenam-eup, Haenam-gun, Jeolla-namdo
Size: 17 acres

Haenam Tea Plantation was established in 1981.

Like its nickname “ddang kkeut maeul“(땅끝마을 – directly translating into “village at the end of the earth (land)”), Haenam is located at the southern most tip of South Korea’s mainland.

Our tea fields are located in idyllic surrounding near the coast. The cool ocean breeze and abundant rainfall create the perfect climate for tea shrubs.

One of the greatest factors in choosing a tea field is the balance of “yin and yang”. In the case of growing tea, this is the balance of sun exposure and natural shading. This ensures the best, natural taste of the tea leaves.

The natural “shading” at Haenam is provided in part by surrounding hills as well as the sea breeze (being near a large body of water, there is slight fog in the morning, blocking the sun’s rays from directly hitting the fields until later in the day).

The tea from all three fields of the Honam Tea Estates are combined to ensure consistency in aroma and flavor, year after year.

Youngam Tea Plantation

Location: Unam-ri, Deokjin-myeon, Youngam-gun, Jeolla-namdo
Size: 41 acres


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Youngam Tea Plantation was established in 1979 on the foothills of Wolchul (pronounced “wuhl-chool) Mountains.

This region was chosen for its ideal locality, rich soil conditions and natural beauty.

One of the greatest factors in choosing a tea field is the balance of “yin and yang”. In the case of growing tea, this is the balance of sun exposure and natural shading (provided by Wolchul mountain), which ensures the best, natural taste of the tea leaves.
Youngam Tea Plantation is Honam Tea Estate’s largest and most productive tea estate. The pristine lines of this estate’s tea shrubs are recognized as one of Korea’s finest, possessing the most desirable flavors. 

Youngam is also the location of our second factory. Our first, in the city of Gwangju, processes all the tea leaves picked from our Jangsung Tea Plantation. The factory in Youngam takes care of all the tea leaves harvested from both our tea plantations in Youngam and Haenam.

Both factories have received the ISO 22000 certification, which is one of the highest certifications that can be earned when it comes to factories dealing with food products.

The tea from all three fields of the Honam Tea Estates are combined to ensure consistency in aroma and flavor, year after year.