Hamada Shoyu Co., Ltd., a long-standing maker of Japanese soy sauce in the Kumamoto prefecture of Kyushu, Japan and member of Heritage Foods, recently held an inauguration ceremony to celebrate its newly repaired factory, which was badly damaged by the Kumamoto earthquake in 2016. The event also comes in conjunction with Hamada’s 200th year anniversary celebration since its founding in 1818.
Dr. Victor Fung, Group Chairman of Fung Group and owner of Heritage Foods, attended the auspicious event, along with the Hamada 7th generation family; world renowned architect Kengo Kuma, as well as several key executives from Heritage Foods and members of the media from across the region.
“Heritage Foods strongly believes in optimising the potential of local brands with strong heritage for global audiences,” said Dr. Victor Fung.“The renovation works of the Hamada Shoyu factory is proof of our commitment to the companies under our portfolio. We envision Hamada Shoyu in serving a crucial role in Heritage Foods’ plans to expand authentic Japanese soy sauce and seasonings across the region”.
Repair and maintenance works for the 200-year-old Hamada Shoyu factory proved to be a challenge for Kuma Kengo, who oversaw the factory’s redesign and renovations. In addition to financial and manpower issues, several Hamada Shoyu buildings were registered as Tangible Cultural Property by the Japanese Government back in 2007; extra care had to be taken to ensure its original historical designs and structure of its warehouses and brickwork-supported boilers were retained.
“Hamada Shoyu has a long established history of making premium soy sauce in Kumamoto, so it was necessary to retain the original infrastructure’s design of the factory while modernising it for today’s manufacturing standards,” said Kuma Kengo. “We were able to achieve them thanks to the hard work, moral and financial support provided by Hamada Shoyu as well as Heritage Foods.”
Hamada Shoyu has been making soy sauces and condiments in Kumamoto City for the past two centuries, leveraging the clear, natural mineral-rich spring water from Mount Aso to produce its high-quality premium soy sauces. Heritage Foods will soon introduce the famous flavours of Hamada Shoyu soy sauce from Kumamoto to the world as it transfers technology to Bidor Kwong Heng, a Malaysian condiment company also under Heritage Foods brand portfolio. Bidor Kwong Heng will have the official license to produce premium halal Hamada Shoyu soy sauces suitable for general consumption in Southeast Asia.