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Choya

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c. 750 In the famous Man'yoshu, Japan's oldest collection of waka poems, the visually appealing ume blossoms are incorporated into 118 poems, compared to only 42 for cherry blossoms. 918 “Honzowamyo” the oldest Japanese dictionary of pharmacy, mentions ume. 960 It is said that Emperor Murakami recovered from his illness by drinking a special tea blend made with “*umeboshi and kombu (kelp)”. 984 The medicinal properties of ume are mentioned in the “Ishinho”, Japan's oldest medical publication. c. 1550 During the Sengoku (Warring States) Era, Lord Kuroda Josui issues an edict to all of his vassals stating that each of them must plant three ume trees at the birth of their sons. There were many feudal lords during this time that ordered the planting of ume trees as a source of medicine in preparation for war. 1619 Tokugawa Yorinobu becomes Lord of Kii province and soon Ando Naotsugu instigates a policy of encouraging ume cultivation. 1697 The term Umeshu appears for the first time in the “Honcho-shokkan” book of Japanese cuisine. Ume is described as a medicinal agent that stops the accumulation of phlegm, relieves parched and sore throat, improves the appetite, and dissolves poisons. 1712 In the Wakan-sansai-zue encyclopedia, ubai (smoked ume), is described as a medicinal agent that aids the blood flow in the lungs and spleen. 1817 The Shakoku-Koden-Hihou states that intestine inflammation sufferers should grind green ume to a pulp and let it dry under the sun and kneed it into a paste. 1878 There is an outbreak of cholera in Japan and umeboshi are in great demand. 1886 A prosperous ume farming business is started in the Kishu region. 1904 Umeboshi becomes part of the food supplies sent to frontline soldiers during the Russo-Japanese War. The term hi-no-maru bento (a boxed lunch of white rice with a pickled ume in the centre, recalling the Japanese flag) originates during this time. 1914 The predecessor of CHOYA UMESHU CO., LTD. begins viticulture. 1950 Research begins to determine the finest variety of ume in Japan and the now-famous Nanko-ume is finally certified as such afterin five years. 1952 In America, E.T.Krebs gives the name B17 to the amygdalin found in ume. 1962 Japan's new Liquor Tax Law allows the home production of fruit based liqueur. 1965 Nanko-ume is registered to the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. CHOYA starts radio and television advertisements. 2005 Umeshu boom begins.