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Meet Our Foodmakers

Agrifood

Kuki

Mie

In 1886, Monshichi acquired an oil machine from the British and founded Kuki. Since then, Kuki has been applying the “continuous pressing method” to make a sesame oil without using any chemicals or enhancers. With just one taste of Kuki’s sesame oil, you will discover and experience the pure earthy fragrance of the sesame seeds and know why the Kuki family is famous for its sesame oil.

Maehara Seifun

Hyogo

Since the early 1900s, the Maehara family has put their heart and soul into Japanese flour production under the Himeji Castle, which is one of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Their passion for ingredients inspired Maehara to travel throughout Japan to find farmers that shared his passion for high-quality glutinous rice and beans. So that he could make traditional and delicious Japanese flour, mochi and red bean paste.

Marukura

Okayama

Okada family has been producing small-batch organic fermented foods in Kurashiki, Okayama. The family is passionate and dedicated to spreading top quality, healthy foods all over Japan. Currently, their white miso, amazake, and rice koji products are favorites of those who seek healthier foods in European and Asian countries. The products are also now beginning to be introduced in America.

Maruman

Nagano

The Nakata family started brewing miso in the southern part of Nagano in 1888, pursuing the highest quality of Shinshu region style miso making. Since then, the Nakata family has made significant achievements in the development of innovative methods that shorten the fermentation period and also enables the making of miso without any food-additives. True pioneers, the Nakata family has influenced many other miso breweries.

Morihan

Kyoto

Since 1836, Morihan has been producing a full range of tea products ranging from ceremony grade matcha to instant tea for daily use. Morihan has maintained its century-years tradition of providing the highest quality tea in the heart of Japanese tea center, Uji. Masaru Kikuoka, one of Japans’ top tea sommeliers, selects tea leaves for each product to ensure the quality and authenticity of pure matcha.

Okuizumo Rose Garden

Shimane

Okuizumo Rose Garden is an artisan rose producer based in the beautiful Oku Izumo region. It is operated by the Fukuma family who devoted themselves to high quality organic and pesticide-free edible rose products, ranging from dried petals to rose syrup. Its unique rose cultivar “Sahime,” developed by Atsushi Fukuma, exhibits more floral notes and a fruity-sweet aroma. Its deep red petals contain more anthocyanin and polyphenol than other cultivars.

Sennari Vinegar Brewery

Hiroshima

Authentic, pure rice vinegar is made only of organic rice and water. To better find the perfect ingredients for brewing a pure rice vinegar, Sennari moved its brewery to the mountainside of Hiroshima. This ensured the best natural water. Sennari then partnered with select organic rice farmers that cultivated a specific rice culver. Today, Sennari is known as one of the best small-batch pure vinegar breweries in Japan.

Citrus / Fruits

Kishida

Yamaguchi

Kishida has mastered the art of growing natural Japanese citruses and making perfect citrus-based goods. Working closely with local farmers of daidai (Japanese bitter orange), yuzu, and other citruses in Yamaguchi and neighboring Shikoku Island, Kishida oversees all operations, from harvest to packaging to distribution. With its expertise in Japanese citrus, even 5-star chefs in Japan are eager to work closely with Kishida to master the use of Japanese citrus.

Nakata

Wakayama

Since its foundation in 1897, Nakata has produced artisan umeboshi (pickled ume fruits) by working closely with local ume farmers. The farmers have been rooted for over a century in Kishu region in Wakayama, the sole area of production of premium Nanko Ume. With an increasing desire from people to pursue a healthy lifestyle, Nakata continues to further the potential of this unique fruit by developing more delicious and versatile ume products.

Shigeharu Shindo Shop

Ehime

Based in the Ehime prefecture, which is known as the wonderland of naturally growing Japanese citruses such as Yuzu, Amanatsu and Iyokan oranges, Shigeharu Shindo has specialized in candying citrus peels for over a half-century. Working closely with local citrus farmers in the region, Shindo Shigeharu Shop ensures the best quality fruits available so that you can enjoy the natural citrusy flavor without any food coloring, artificial fragrances, and preservatives.

Noodle

Gobun

Akita

Gobun is an artisan producer of Inaniwa udon noodles, which are a local version of udon noodles in Akita. This producer is only known to those who crave superior quality and authenticity, as Gobun utilizes a traditional hand-made process when making their noodles. With every bite, it is evident that Gobun’s expertise and refined skills go beyond any machines to deliver real craftsmanship.

Hakubaku

Yamanashi

Since its foundation in Yamanashi, Hakubaku has been deeply involved with 5 grains; Barley, Rice, Millet, Wheat, and Soba (Buckwheat). The company continually strives to explore new possibilities for these grains by providing innovations in grain products and processing technology. Hakubaku’s focus on what makes a tasty and nutritious staple food makes it unique, as is its lineup of sensational grain, flour, and noodle products.

Ishibashiya

Fukuoka

Blessed with clear groundwater running under the beautiful Omura region in Fukuoka, Ishibashiya plants high-quality konjac (konnyaku), a famous Japanese superfood. Since its foundation by Kamejiro Ishibashi in 1877, Ishibashiya has been producing premium konjac products with the unique handmade method called Bata-Neri, which creates random bubbles in the konjac, serving to enhance the flavor.

Shodoshima Tenobe Somen Co-op

Kagawa

While Shodoshima Island is only a small island located in the Seto Inland Sea, it has played a vital role in the Japanese culinary world due to its unique and vibrant food culture. Local noodle makers brought their skills and knowledge to the co-op to make their masterpiece hand-made somen using high-quality ingredients, combined with the natural blessings of the ocean, sun, and a mild sea breeze.

Yamamoto Kajino

Nagano

The Yamamoto family started their business making equipment for local buckwheat farmers in the Shinshu region. Masao, a member of the family, had a dream to make soba noodles with only buckwheat flour and water—no wheat, salt, or additives. Back then, nobody in the country believed it was possible. But in 1969, this former engineer invented a specially designed flour-mill, and the history of fully nutty, delicious noodles began.

Sauce

Higashimaru

Hyogo

Higashimaru has been brewing Usukuchi soy sauce for 350 years in the Harima region, where Usukuchi soy sauce (a type of soy sauce with lighter in color but saltier and sweeter) was first developed in 1666. The history of Usukuchi soy sauce and Higashimaru go hand in hand, and this flavorful sauce plays an indispensable role in Kappo cuisine and the traditional food culture in Kyoto and Osaka.

Igagoe

Mie

The Iga region is famous for its historical Ninja culture. It is also where Igagoe is based. The company has been painstakingly brewing tamari soy sauce using natural methods since its foundation in 1873. The majority of tamari soy sauces currently in the market are brewed with a heating process that serves to fasten its fermentation. However, Igagoe’s fermentation process lasts 300 days, throughout Japan’s four seasons.

Marukin

Kagawa

Based in Shodo Island (literally "The Island of Small Beans"), Marukin has been producing premium Japanese soy sauce using traditional methods dating back to 1907. In addition to creating a wide range of traditional soy sauces, Marukin also continuously explores new flavors of soy sauce-based seasonings as well as further developing their century-years brewing methods and spirits.

Morita

Aichi

Morita is committed to cultivating the Japanese culinary scene with its 350 years of brewing expertise. Their basic seasonings such as mirin and cooking sake can be found in both home kitchens and the kitchens of top culinary professionals in Japan. Morita’s passion for showing the full potential of traditional Japanese seasonings has resulted in innovative and highly versatile condiments.

Otafuku

Hiroshima

Since its foundation in 1922, Otafuku has been passionate about introducing Japanese “Konamon(o)” both domestically and internationally. Konamon(o) refers to flour-based dishes such as Okonomiyaki, Takoyaki, and Yakisoba. Over the years, Konamon(o) has become a large part of the culinary culture in Japan, and Otafuku dreams of continuing to spread the joy of Konamon(o) culture worldwide with their extensive lineups and love for Konamon(o).

Papaya

Kyoto

“Papaya” means the number 888, which is considered a lucky number in Japan. But instead of making a sweet papaya sauce, Papaya has been brewing savory vegetable sauces for over 40 years! Utilizing unique methods to make signature sauces such as Worcestershire sauce and Tonkatsu sauce. Papaya sauces exhibit a hint of surprisingly deep umami. This is why Papaya has been a standout among many other sauce makers.

Yusaido

Kyoto

Based in Kyoto, one of Japan’s major culinary centers, Yusaido produces quality condiments such as mayonnaise and dressing utilizing natural ingredients and traditional methods of fermentation. Yusaido has become a famous brand in Japan, known for an additive-free mayonnaise made of fresh eggs of hens raised on additive-free food, and using the vacuum emulsifier pots to prevent oxidation during the production process.

Seafood

Kurakon

Osaka

Kurakon has become one of the most beloved seaweed brands in Japan since its establishment in 1921. In addition to producing a variety of kombu (kelp) other seaweed products, Kurakon also dedicates itself to spreading its century-year knowledge and passion for seaweed all over the world. The company is eager to collaborate with chefs and producers to further explore the potential of this nutritious and tasty seaweed.

Nagai Nori

Aichi

Nagai has access to a nationwide supplier network as do other seaweed producers, but Nagai is also significant in the market due to its commitment to the quality of ingredients. Nagai purchases nearly half of the entire production of nori seaweed grown in the Mikawa Bay in Aichi, which is ranked as one of the highest grades, yet accounts for only 0.4% of domestic production of nori seaweed in Japan.

Sky Food

Osaka

Since its launch in 1981, Sky Foods has been supporting the healthy diet in Japan with its unique and easy-to-use condiments, including its beloved MSG-free or additive-free powder dashi series. In addition to promoting the health benefits of their condiments, Sky Foods is also focused on visiting and talking with each local fisher and farmer to ensure the quality, safety, and traceability of the ingredients.

Yamaki

Ehime

Yamaki is one of Japan’s most popular dashi brands with 100 years of expertise producing high-quality Katsuobushi (smoked and dried bonito that has been shaved into flakes thinner than paper). With its craftsmanship inherited since its foundation in 1917, Yamaki’s commitment to its quality oversees the entire process, from hand-selecting bonito at fishing ports, to preparing, boiling, smoking, drying, shaving into flakes and packaging.

Spice

C&A Amari Spice Foods

Kyoto

Since 1932, C&A has a nearly 90-year history of stable quality and hygiene management processes, from importing to distribution. C&A is dedicated to producing “Clean Spices” with a groundbreaking low bacterial count thanks to superior technical skills and Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), as well as a Pharmaceutical Manufacturing License for the highest level of safety. The dedication is evident in the flavor and freshness of the spices.

Kameya

Shizuoka

Kameya cultivates wasabi plants at its farm at the skirt of Mt. Amagi. The area is blessed with a significant amount of precipitation, and the abundant rainwater permeates the pumice layer and emerges rich in nutrients and oxygen. This water stays 12-13 degrees Celsius throughout the year, creating the perfect conditions for natural wasabi production and enabling Kameya to produce the highest quality wasabi products since 1949.

Maruya

Kyoto

Maruya has always had a love for fresh Japanese peppers. This is likely because the founders grew up with Kyoto’s signature Kaiseki or Kappo cuisine. Today, Maruya grinds and compounds fresh Japanese peppers cultivated by local farmers who also love traditional Japanese spices such as shichimi, ichimi, and sansho peppers. Maruya is proud to offer its lineup online and at its brick and motor stores in its hometown, Kyoto.

Yawataya Isogoro

Nagano

Since 1736, Yawataya Isogoro has been producing shichimi togarashi (a mix of seven-kinds of spices) in the northwest part of Nagano, a region with easy access to locally grown ingredients. Yawataya has been thriving as a small batch producer of shichimi togarashi. The distinctive flavor reminiscent of the mountainous region makes it a standout spice among the many other shichimi togarashi products available in Japan.