The material basis of Pu-erh tea transformation is based on the abundant material content of Yunnan large leaf species. The water content of Pu-erh tea is about 10% when it leaves the factory, which is an inherent condition to ensure the correct transformation of Pu-erh tea.
When the relative humidity of the environment is between 50-70%, the Pu-erh raw tea under the condition of raw material pressure can maintain a relatively stable water content and keep it in and out. In the north where the humidity is too low, a long-term dry environment will cause Pu-erh tea to lose water, and the water content will not only slow down the aging rate, but also take away some substances during the dehydration process. In the south where the humidity is too high, the water vapor in the environment will be absorbed by Pu-erh tea, and the increased water content provides suitable growth conditions for bacteria and molds, which may cause mold.
Therefore, maintaining this moisture content, referred to as “moisturizing” for short, is a vital goal in the storage of Pu-erh tea. Regardless of whether it is south or north, the means of storage must go all out to achieve this goal.
There are two main external factors assisting Pu-erh sheng tea aging, oxygen and temperature.
The transformation of Pu-erh raw tea is an oxidation process, and oxygen plays a role in accelerating the transformation. Therefore, the microcirculation of air can help increase the conversion speed, but excessive ventilation will dehydrate and deteriorate Pu-erh tea. The so-called “ventilation” of the storage environment in the past has been negated by a lot of facts in practice, which requires special attention.
The temperature of can also affect Pu-erh tea transformation. In the high temperature summer, the conversion speed is fast, and in the low temperature winter, the conversion speed is slow.
To sum up, one internal factor moisture content, two external factors oxygen and temperature are the main factors affecting the Pu-erh raw tea transformation, and the external factors have to work through internal factors. According to the different climatic conditions in various places and the conditions for Pu-erh tea transformation, the storage in different regions will form teas with local climate characteristics. Observing and experiencing this process is also one of the joys of Pu-erh tea collection.