Help Chinese PLA Unit 37341 Translate

Friends of ours who know we like Pu’erh tea from Yunnan, China, recently gave us a disk of it that proved to be very rich in flavor, with the additional attraction of one of the worst Chinese-to-English translations I think I’ve ever seen. The translation goes awry in spelling, grammar, word-choice, and even typography. Here’s an image of the little slip of paper that came inside the package.

Yunnan Jingmai Hill Old Trees Tea

Yunnan Jingmai Hill Old Trees Tea

Now here’s a transcription of the original English translation.


This article chooses to use Yunnan Jingmai hill old trees tea is raw material, was steam, rumple, nhibitted by traditional craftbut become, that tea Fa-Etty strengthen to show the milli-, green and yellow bright aroma pure and unadulterated of the teaEsoup, the tase joss-stick and return sweet hold out for long time. Often drimking can help the dig-Eest, go to greasy, the pure spirit of adsolute deing is great. Come to wine etc. This,article more Ch-Een is more fragrant can be collect in dry, well ventilated, avoid the light to have no strange Esmell of environment.
Kunming, Guanduqu, Yongjiu tea factory processing
Chinese People’s Liberation Army 37341 Troops, produce in Zhongyi

And here’s my first, painfully crafted attempt to make sense of the passage. My Chinese is as bad as Unit 37341’s English. Corrections and suggestions are most welcome.

Yunnan Jingmai Hill Old-growth Tea

This product is made from select, old-growth tea bushes in the Jingmai Hill region of Yunnan. Traditional methods of steaming, rubbing, and pressing into shape make this tea into stout cords yielding a broth of yellow-green brightness, pure fragrance, mellow taste, and lingering sweetness. Drinking it regularly can aid digestion, counteract oily food, [magically clear the air, purify something, reduce flatulence?] refresh the mind, overcome alcohol, etc. This product will retain its fragrance as it ages if it can be stored in a dry, well-ventilated place away from light or strange odors.
Processed by Yongjiu Tea Factory, Guandu District, Kunming
Product of Chinese People’s Liberation Army Unit 37341, Zhongyi



Filed under China, food, language

5 responses to “Help Chinese PLA Unit 37341 Translate

  1. Limao Luo

    神清气爽 is a phrase meaning “to feel good” or “to be in a good mood” (see nciku entry on 神清气爽).
    The example that the nciku link provides is
    I felt fresh and cool after a sleep.

  2. Limao Luo

    Also (don’t mean to spam, but I just noticed) the wikpedia article you linked to contains an image with an a similar product (“Yunnan Chihtsu Bingcha”) with near identical wording on the flyer – even though it’s made by a completely different company.

    • Thanks for pointing that out. The English translation on the image in Wikipedia is much better in every way: word choice, spelling, grammar, and typography.

  3. Pingback: Sinoglot | Link roundup — 10 Jan 2011

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s