Viamver® yeast is a “house” yeast found in the miso of Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce Brewing Company. The genus of the yeast is Zygosaccharomyces rouxii (hereafter referred to as Z. rouxii). It is one of the most typical salt-tolerant yeasts in the fermentation of miso and soy sauce.
So what is so special about Viamver® yeast? Normally, when we talk about “salt-tolerant yeast” we are talking about yeast that can operate in the presence of salt. You might think of yeast that promotes alcoholic fermentation in wine or liquor without salt, but there are also yeast strains, like Z. rouxii, that are more active in miso and soy sauce that use salt.
This means that this strain is not suitable for brewing alcohol. It’s even considered a spoilage fungus in wine making.
However, Viamver® yeast is different: it is Z. rouxii, and yet it is able to continue fermentation without weakening at all, even under unsalted conditions. Why was such a yeast found in Yamamo’s miso in the first place?
It was a discovery that came about after Yasushi Takahashi, the seventh generation, took over the company and started to use microbes used in industries outside the miso and soy sauce industry. He applied technologies from other industries and conducted unusual experiments that did not follow conventional theories.
In the tenth year of this irregular research, the yeast was discovered in his experimental miso. This was a microbe that he would never have encountered in the same method of miso production. On the top of it, even if a microbe is a new species or has a new efficacy, it wouldn’t have been possible to use if it kills other useful microbes. This means that the chance of finding useful microbes is very low and difficult.
In fact, in the second year of his experiment, Takahashi was already able to produce 6% alcohol from miso (normally less than 3%). This inspired him to see the potential of this yeast for more than just miso and soy sauce, so he asked experts in alcoholic beverages and lactic acid bacteria to analyse it. He has taken a rather unique approach and conducted multifaceted tests, such as trying salt-free conditions and using fruits, nuts, and mushrooms unrelated to miso and soy sauce as ingredients. _Microbiology
As I mentioned in my last post, this was a rather outlandish idea in the miso and soy sauce industry, where people expect miso to “stay the same”;. Takahashi didn’t care. He thought that this yeast should be used not only for miso and soy sauce, but also for fermentation and brewing of sake and wine across the board.
He set up a research team called ASTRONOMICA® to explore fermentation that makes the most of this yeast. (Read more at https://bit.ly/3qqgNjL)
As the research progressed, it was discovered that this yeast could produce succinic acid, a flavour component obtained from fish and shellfish, twice as much as normal Z. rouxii. In addition, it has the ability to ferment without salt and to produce around 6% of alcohol.
Moreover, it also has a gorgeous aroma similar to that of fruit or ginjo, ability to improve the quality of the flesh, and even has a masking effect.
“I can’t waste the potential of such a multi-talented yeast like this.” Takahashi applied for a microbial patent for the yeast and a production process patent for high succinic acid. Then he went on to present his findings at Brewing society of Japan and applied for international trademarks.
I can tell you that this is an extremely rare story of a small brewery from a rural area that went this far.
All these decisions were made based on his clear vision to preserve the techniques and discoveries in an objective manner, while bringing innovation to the industry as well as introducing the new value of fermentation to the world from Japan.
Takahashi named this yeast strain Viamver®, and applied for international trademark registration on ASTRONOMICA® too.
Since then, ASTRONOMICA® has been experimenting not only to make innovative miso and soy sauce, but also to brew natural wine that uses this gorgeous aroma and flavour of this yeast.
What’s next? Takahashi wants to use this yeast in doburoku and beer even, so more interesting parings can be achieved in the future. No one can stop him now.
At MONO MONTHLY YAMAMO, we share this chance to try the ASTRONOMICA® labelled soy sauce, salt, and hot sauce from their research. How exciting is that What’s the taste like? Well, let’s find that out in the coming posts. Stay tuned.
Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce Brewing Company’s ASTRONOMICA® research team presents to the world the potential of Japanese fermented foods
This is the name of the in-house research team at Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce, a 150-year-old brewery in Yuzawa City, Akita Prefecture, a place blessed with abundant water sources, nature and snow in winter.
Yamamo was originally a local brewery that was dedicated to preserving the traditional miso and soy sauce in Akita. Even now, the taste and techniques are passed on by the brewers who have been supporting the brewery for many years, and continue to provide a stable taste to the home kitchen. It is a brewery that has retained the “usual taste” that is expected in Japan, as well as the so-called “classic” miso and soy sauce breweries that the rest of the world generally expects.
It was not until the seventh generation, when Yasushi Takahashi took over the family business, that the business began to take a new turn. One of the main catalysts for this change was the discovery of a unique and rare yeast strain that had been lying dormant in the brewery for many years. The yeast is called Viamver® yeast (Zygosaccharomyces rouxii). _Microbiology
This yeast, with its unique characteristics, was presented by Yamamo at the Japan Brewers Association in 2020 and is now named Viamver® yeast. The company has applied for a patent for both its existence as a “house” yeast and its production method.
Why is this yeast so special? What is Yamamo trying to do with it?
When it comes to the global positioning of Japanese miso and soy sauce, the word ‘tradition’ is unquestionably attached to them wherever they go. It is a word that is genuinely admired and revered both at home and abroad, and one that is expected to remain unchanged. That is where the seventh generation posed his question.
Japanese fermented seasonings still have infinite possibilities. Even the Japanese people fail to imagine that because they are so used to the “traditional” taste. The familiar taste is delicious, and that’s a given. It’s not a negative thing.
However, despite the fact that Japanese fermented seasonings are now spreading all over the world, and the value of these products is being rediscovered in Japan, it is becoming more and more difficult for a single brewery to survive as an industry. Why?
The answer lies in the new potential of Japanese fermentation, a hitherto undiscovered treasure trove that Takahashi the 7th has set his eyes on.
There are countless varieties of traditional Japanese fermented seasonings, each with their own complex flavours, and each brewery has its own final taste. In order to enhance the final product, or to keep the taste unchanged, the ingredients are constantly analysed and the brewing process is reviewed, but there is still very limited research in Japan into the application of these ingredients to other brews.
This is because, as mentioned above, there are not many breweries that have time and energy to invest on such experiment. They are busy enough only to survive.
It was while confronting these issues from an industry-wide perspective that Takahashi met Viamver® yeast. This was a microbe that he would never have encountered in the same method of miso production.
Normally, yeast strains used to brew miso are halophilic, meaning that they thrive in the presence of salt. However, Viamver® is different. This yeast is not only halophilic, but it is also able to live and work in the absence of salt, and is capable of producing almost 6% alcohol.
Moreover, it was also found to have a high capacity for the production of succinic acid, which is involved in the umami flavour, as well as the ability to produce a floral aroma similar to that of fruit and ginjo.
In order to make unlimited use of this encounter with this yeast with a new character, Takahashi set up a research team both inside and outside the company.
The team is not only applying this yeast to miso and soy sauce, but also to the brewing of natural wine and exploring new seasoning prototypes.
The name ASTRONOMICA® is based on the idea that the mechanism of fermentation is reminiscent of a celestial body: the various ingredients are considered as stars, the myriad of ingredients as the starry sky, and the coordination of ingredients and metabolic pathways as constellations and the orderly operation of the planets.
What does ASTRONOMICA® have to offer the world?
Tradition and innovation are what the company has been exploring for a long time. With Viamver® yeast, ASTRONOMICA® will go beyond the boundaries of miso and soy sauce and give shape to its innovation as a brand.
As a first step, this winter, MONO MONTHLY would like to give you the opportunity to try some of the existing products of Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce Brewery, as well as some of the new fermented seasonings made with the world’s first Viamver® yeast.
These are seasonings that use this yeast in a unique and flexible application, in the genuine pursuit of flavour.
Two years ago, Malica ferments hosted Ms. Marika, a researcher in the field of Koji, to come to our company for a tour. At that time, Yamamo was in the midst of a period of frenzied experimentation, and without even having the idea of naming the yeast Viamver®, we had discovered a special yeast that produced a gorgeous aroma that could not be produced by miso and soy sauce in our 10th year of test brewing, and we were experimenting from all angles to explore the possibilities.
In the summer of this year, Marika, who was assigned by MONO JAPAN, an online exhibition in the Netherlands, asked us to open a stand alone, and while she asked us to handle her existing products, Yamamo Miso and Shiro Dashi, we have been communicating with her about products using Viamver® yeast.
We have also stabilized the quality and production of the ASTRONOMICA® label series, which is a range of Viamver® yeast products, and are now ready to introduce them to the world. We are looking forward to seeing you there. We hope that through this order-taking event, we can convey the essence of our efforts to enrich the industry and overseas fermentation. _Microbiology
MONO JAPAN is a celebration of contemporary Japanese craft and design. It is an event and a platform devoted to sophisticated beauty grounded in tradition, enriched with contemporary thinking, and refined to perfection with uncompromising skills. MONO JAPAN represents the design that defies the gravity of the mundane and brings joy to the simplest rituals of every day.
○About MONO JAPAN
MONO JAPAN 是日本當代手工藝和設計的節日。 這是一個活動和平台，致力於以傳統、現代思維為後盾的精緻之美，以及以不妥協的技術完善之美。 MONO JAPAN 提出了一種設計，它顛覆了平凡的日常生活，讓簡單的日常生活變得有趣。
ヤマモ味噌醤油醸造元 MONO MONTHLY with Malica Fermentsオンライン受注会2021年11月10日〜24日
About the maker ヤマモ味噌醤油醸造元は江戸末期から続く秋田の老舗蔵元。世界の食文化と和の調味料が融合し、進化していくことを理念“Life is Voyage”とし、海外展開と共にリブランディングを行う。150年続くレガシーを捉え、庭園やカフェ、ギャラリーを整備し、産業にアートとインバウンドツアーを実装。10年に渡る試験醸造から果実香と旨味を醸成するViamver®酵母（特許出願中）を発見し、日本醸造学会発表。研究者やシェフ、アーティストが参画するチームASTRONOMICA®を醸成。味噌醤油製品のみならずカフェメニューや肉魚の加工品、ワインや飲料に応用し、新たな発酵の世界を追求する。伝統を創造性と美意識により再構築を進める。
Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce Brewing Company MONO MONTHLY with Malica Ferments online order-taking event November 10 – 24, 2021
About the maker Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce Brewing Company is a long-established brewery in Akita that has been operating since the late Edo period. The company’s philosophy, “Life is Voyage”, is to combine and evolve Japanese seasonings with the world’s food culture, and to re-brand as it expands overseas. They have a garden, a café and a gallery, building on a legacy of 150 years, and are also introducing art and inbound tours into the industry. After 10 years of experimental brewing, Yamamo discovered the Viamver yeast (patent pending), which produces fruity aroma and delicious flavours. This yeast is presented at Brewing Society of Japan. ASTRONOMICA is a team of researchers, chefs and artists, and the team pursues a new world of fermentation, not only in miso and soy sauce products, but also in café menus, processed meat and fish products, wine and beverages. Tradition is being rebuilt with creativity and aesthetics.
YAMAMO Products A product line of miso, soy sauce, dashi, and other products that have been brewed since ancient times and have a long history.
ASTRONOMICA® products ASTRONOMICA® products are created through innovative research and development by a team of experts, including researchers, chefs, and artists, while maintaining a strong focus on tradition.
For the November MONO MONTHLY event, we will be welcoming Marika Groen, who lives in Europe and is widely known for her knowledge of Japanese fermentation, to introduce her special fermented foods.
Marika Groen Profile Organizer of Malica ferments | Researcher in the field of Koji | Mobile fermentation |Photographer |Connecting hub for bacteria and people |
While traveling around Europe and Japan, I share the philosophy of Kojiology as a philosophy for living, and I am searching for a way to express and communicate through my senses. He teaches a wide range of people, from chefs to housewives, about fermentation and how to live with fermentation. Once a year, she organizes a tour of Japanese breweries and satoyama to take overseas students for training. During her stay in Japan, she travels around the country to visit breweries, learn about tradition, fermentation, and art, and brings the information back to Europe to spread the word. She is a mold artist and photographer.
MONO MONTHLY with Malica Ferments online order-taking event
It’s already been half a year since our last MONO MONTHLY WHITE in May this year.
I believe it’s about time for you to meet another delicious miso and soy sauce (and more). Let me introduce Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce Brewing Company in Yuzawa city, Akita.
I’ve been waiting to talk about this brewery for long. I visited them in 2019 during my fermentation journey and Yasushi Takahashi, the 7th generation of the company showed me around their production area and shared his vision of redefining Japanese fermented products and unlocking the potential in the traditional brewing with me.
Before visiting, their shining website drew my attention because it did not look like the one from a traditional brewery with 150 years of history. As anticipated, the brewery was eye-grabbing and the whole atmosphere made me even confused when I stepped in.
It was classy but good old, and the front store had a showcase of their time-honored miso, shoyu and many other products – with stylishly designed labels on them. This is something you don’t always expect, but Yamamo has a very special scope in this approach. I wish to talk more about it in November.
During the brewery tour, I was offered many types of miso for sample tasting and they all were very tasty. I remember that I licked each small cup of their miso there, and brought some of their products home in The Netherlands.
Their miso uses double the amount of koji and much less salt to make the taste round and mellow. It was easy to use in cooking non-Japanese dishes and blends well with what local friends and family eat in daily basis.
One of other items I brought home and finished too soon, was their shirodashi. Shirodashi is a light-coloured concentrated soup stock made from dashi, soy sauce and rice sweetener etc in general, and their blending was in great balance that I could use it for almost anything. From the noodle dishes to seasoned rice, their shirodashi was the ultimate flavour enhancer that I could rely on.
In Japanese cooking, we need to do this blending ourselves by measuring each condiment but shirodashi is always ready to go and it’s simply impossible to go wrong with cooking. No knowledge, no experience required. Just add it to anything and you will be surprised with how much this complex umami deepens the taste of your dish. The best pairing is egg in any form of cooking.
As a fan of Yamamo products, I kept the very last bit of their miso in the fridge but now that’s also nearly finishing. I wish I could have shared this with friends in Europe because it’s just so easy to introduce in their kitchen.
MONO MONTHLY with Malica Ferments online order-taking event
距離今年 5 月大熱的 MONO MONTHLY WHITE 已經過去半年了。是不是該吃下一道美味的味噌和醬油了？
Japanese miso and soy sauce are still mainly in demand by a certain segment of the locals, such as Japanese food lovers or health-conscious consumers. However, Yamamo’s miso and soy sauce transcend these barriers.
To put it in an extreme way, I don’t even think we need to call it “miso” or “soy sauce” anymore. I want you to taste first, then the story will follow like music while you close your eyes, enjoying their taste.
Apart from my initial intention of getting their products again and sharing them with more people, I have one more reason why I wanted to invite them to MONO MONTHLY.
I will tell more details in November, but only as a teaser… we are introducing more than just miso and shirodashi this time. They have more, and this would be a premiere stage.
Yamamo has been making continuous effort in rediscovering possibilities in flavour development to reconnect their history and the future of Japanese fermented products.
Creating a complex pasta dish that takes advantage of multiple fermentation actions was something that we had envisioned since the start of our food and beverage department. It was not an easy task, and after much experimentation and time spent by our chefs and staff, we were able to create a grand menu that could be served without reservations.
The concept of “FERMENTED FOAM SAUCE PASTA with VIAMVER®︎ TOMATO & PORCINI” is to serve the fermented foam sauce, which is a combination of multiple fermentations, as the main ingredient. For this reason, we use short pasta that is easily absorbed by the sauce. The sauce is made by fermenting several kinds of mushrooms, including mushrooms, with Viamver®︎ yeast to mask the aroma and concentrate the umami flavor. In addition, the lactic acid fermentation of milk gives it a sour and rich taste, and these are combined into a creamy foam sauce. This sauce is marbled with Viamver®︎ yeast-fermented tomato sauce, which is rich in sourness and umami, so that the flavor changes as the sauce binds together. The sauce is a cross between yeast-fermented mushrooms and tomatoes and lacto-fermented milk, flavored with crushed porcini mushrooms, and spicy and bitter with black pepper and fried parsley. I hope you will try it.
【FERMENTED FOAM SAUCE PASTA with VIAMVER®︎ TOMATO & PORCINI】 This short pasta dish is made by fermenting several kinds of mushrooms with Viamver®︎ yeast to concentrate their umami flavor, then combining them with rich lactic acid fermented milk to create a foamy sauce. The acidity of the marbled yeast-fermented tomato sauce is combined with the rich aroma of porcini mushrooms. Fermented vegetable salad included.
【VARIOUS FERMENTED VEGETABLE SALAD with VIAMVER®︎ SEA FOIE GRAS & TOFU MOUSSE】 Chef Sato and his staff added fermented sea foie gras and tofu mousse and vegetable flakes to the succulent vegetarian-style salad that Jonas pursued with bitter roasted nuts and Viamver®︎ yogurt dressing, resulting in a variety of fermented vegetable salads.
The media outlet “relay,” which focuses on business succession, wrote an article about the efforts of Takahashi, the seventh generation.
In the short time since he took over the family business, he has been confronted with situations and environments he did not want to be in. He pursued his own identity in the industry, mixing his personal dreams with his livelihood, doing both inbound and outbound business with a pioneering spirit. Struggled to develop an organization that could replace personnel and instill a new philosophy inside and outside the organization. Pursuing new areas of fermentation through technological research both inside and outside the industry, rather than repeating past methods. These are just a few examples.
Taking over a family business means changing the values that existed in the past, and this involves a lot of problem solving and pain. Also, the challenges and pains are blameless and you have to overcome them alone without blaming anyone. This is the very will to face one’s own life and take responsibility, as is the case with many people who are on their own in the secular world and society.
Through the activities of Yamamo, I would like to create an example of how traditional industries can be rebuilt from the local level. I believe that this is the fusion of the inherited industry and the thoughts of the seventh generation, and that it is the cultural and creative role of Japan, where many traditional industries still exist. I hope you will read the article._mediainfo._magazine
From the path of an architect to the seventh generation of a miso and soy sauce brewer. Becoming an unprecedented brewery with creative thinking
Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce Brewing Company, located in Yuzawa City, Akita Prefecture, is a long-established brewery that has been in business since 1867, and Mr. Yasushi Takahashi is the seventh generation to take over the family business. Mr. Yasushi Takahashi, the seventh generation to take over the family business, has been involved in a number of unconventional activities, such as building a new café, revamping the packaging to expand overseas, and recently, using his own yeast, Viamver®, to make alcoholic beverages. Why has he been able to go beyond the conventional boundaries of the brewing industry? We spoke with him about the source of his passion.
The world of miso and soy sauce is lame. That’s why I’m going to change it.
When he was a child, Mr. Takahashi never wrote “soy sauce shop” in his dreams for the future. His parents never asked him to take over the business, and he always thought the old-fashioned family business was “lame.
However, he is the only male among his siblings. In his senior year, he had a hard time deciding whether to go to graduate school to pursue architecture or to go back to university to study fermentation in order to take over the family business.
Mr. Takahashi said, “If I take over the family business, I will live in Akita. I thought that the world was not so sweet that I could balance the family business and my career as an architect. Above all, I didn’t want to make a choice that I would regret when I died. If I took over and ruined the family business, I could give up, but if I didn’t take over and ruined the family business, I would feel guilty. I couldn’t accept the idea of destroying the family business without taking over.
I decided to take over the business and came back to Akita, but there was no commute to the family business, and it was difficult to switch on and off between home and work. He had little free time to spend, and as he had just joined the company, the stress of not having a place to stay grew, and he clashed with his parents. Somewhere in her mind, she blamed her parents for about a year. The image of a “lame miso and soy sauce shop” that he had had since he was a child of repeating the past did not change even after he took over the business.
However, Mr. Takahashi was able to do something because he had this image.
Mr. Takahashi said, “What would you think if you were told that you would be a miso and soy sauce maker for the rest of your life? I’d still say, ‘Lame. The fact that there are no new entrants to the miso and soy sauce industry nationwide means that our industry is not as attractive as other industries. Unfortunately, I think that’s the general perception of our industry at the moment.
In terms of the industry’s value system, if the greatest value is placed on past manufacturing methods and repetition of the past, the odds are not in the favor of new entrants. We need to find value in both past methods and current approaches. Meanwhile, overseas, young craft miso and soy sauce makers are emerging, especially in Europe. They are creating new products without being bound by common sense. The world’s perception of miso and soy sauce is about to change.
There’s no point in carrying on thinking it’s lame. You’ve made your own decision to go down this path, so you have to make it into an industry that you feel is ‘not tacky. I believe that I have a mission to do that.
A Decade of Solitude. Rebranding the company to bring new value to traditional industries.
Mr. Takahashi decided to turn his family’s business into a “non-dull” industry. Originally, he was planning to expand overseas, so he rebranded the entire company by writing labels in Japanese and English and creating a foreign-language website so that it could be sold overseas.
Mr. Takahashi said, “What I pay attention to when I start something new is to review the past. There is always a flow from the past in what we have now, and within that flow, there are things that will never change. Rather than denying the past and moving forward, we try to respect the past and then build new values.
Miso and soy sauce is not something we made ourselves. I think miso and soy sauce shops are in the business of selling the traditions that have been created in the past. When we think about how we can sell our products overseas, we can add value because our miso and soy sauce are brewed in historic breweries. We need to rebuild the tradition and rebrand it. I believed that by doing so, we could expand overseas.
Two years after Mr. Takahashi took over, the company began doing business with Taiwan, and in its fifth year, it began doing business overseas in earnest. Mr. Takahashi’s own rebranding efforts have been highly evaluated, and in 2013 he received the Good Design Award.
As the seventh generation, Mr. Takahashi was off to a good start from the outside. However, things did not go so well inside the company. After graduating from university, Mr. Takahashi joined the company as one of the youngest members of the management team. He had to organize the older employees who had been with the company for a long time. In addition to the daily routine tasks, Mr. Takahashi asked employees to be more creative in their work by asking for their opinions on plans to increase sales and improve the efficiency of internal operations. There was a time when employees in their 30s and 40s who could not keep up with the changes in the environment were quitting every month. He said that at that time, he was most emotionally exhausted because he thought that he would “destroy the family business” due to the human resource issues.
Mr. Takahashi said, “I took it for granted that if there were creative elements in our daily lives, it would be more enjoyable for our employees. But that wasn’t the case. On the contrary, some of them found it hard. I knew that my actions were not understood by the other employees, but the trend of people quitting for a while was quite heartbreaking.
After about 10 years, I finally realized my true feelings. After about ten years, I finally found someone who understood my true intentions.
Parents’ reaction is the world’s reaction. Communicate what you want to do through your customers.
It took some time to get his employees, and even his parents, who were closest to him, to understand.
Mr. Takahashi’s parents were against the idea of setting up a café space, hoping that it would help revitalize the community by attracting activists and stimulate the community and employees. Today, the entrance is decorated with modern art in vivid colors that seem far removed from the image of a miso and soy sauce shop, and the desks and chairs are antiques. There are antique desks and chairs, and the Buddhist altar can be used as an eat-in space, but Mr. Takahashi had his own reasons for doing so.
Mr. Takahashi: “My parents have always watched over me, even though they didn’t understand, but when I told them I was going to use the old Buddhist room as a café space, they objected, saying, ‘You can’t show the Buddhist room to other people. However, I overcame the opposition and opened the café, and as a result, I got a good response from customers.
It’s not that we ignore our old customers. For example, we’ve designed new packaging, but we’ve kept the labels on the old bottles of soy sauce. I think it’s a good way to test the impression we have on the old users, to see what their fathers say about something new. Even if they are against it at first, their parents may change their minds based on the reaction of the customers. The process of getting the parents’ consent through the customers has become second nature to me.
To create an attractive industry that my childhood self would want to inherit.
Thanks to the reaction of the customers and Mr. Takahashi’s encouragement, his parents now even explain the Buddhist altar. Yamamo Miso and Soy Sauce Brewery continues to work outside the traditional concept of a miso and soy sauce brewery, and has recently been hiring more and more young employees.
They offer tours of the brewery where you can experience traditional production and innovative approaches, and in recent years, they have discovered the unique Viamver® yeast (patent pending) that brews umami from test brewing, which was presented at the Japanese Society of Brewing Science. In recent years, we have discovered the proprietary Viamver® yeast (patent pending), which brews delicious flavor from test brewing, and presented it at the Japanese Society of Brewing Research. In addition, we have formed ASTRONOMICA®, a yeast research and development team, and have begun offering full courses using Viamver® yeast in all dishes. This fall, the company will present a range of products using this yeast at an exhibition in Amsterdam, and will move forward as a brewer working on branding with its own yeast strain.
In addition, we are also working to revitalize the local community. The ASTRONOMICA® development team includes not only chefs and researchers from Japan and abroad, but also architects and artists from outside the company, creating a variety of activities in the region. Most recently, we organized a team of outside professionals and interns from high school and college students to start a community garden project to revive abandoned farmland and open it up to local people. From this experimental initiative, we are now expanding its application to the entire local area, with the goal of reducing the number of abandoned fields to zero, and pursuing sustainability for the community.
Mr. Takahashi: “Just because we are a miso and soy sauce brewery, if we continue to do the same old things, we will one day decline. We want to achieve universality without getting caught up in preconceived notions, and make the industry so attractive that my childhood self would look at me now and think, ‘I want to inherit this, I want to do this. I want to show the world that by combining Japanese traditions from the past with personal creativity, we can offer new value to the world.
Mr. Takahashi is engaged in a series of activities that are unusual for a miso and soy sauce brewer. We look forward to seeing what he does in the future.
○About “relay” Open information on business succession. Nowadays, there are no “successors”. Nearly 50,000 small and medium-sized businesses close down every year. This is despite the fact that nearly half of them are profitable. “I wish I had known about this earlier,” many people say. If only we knew more about the problems and struggles of business owners. If only the information had been more open. If only the information were more open, we could “take over” the business more smoothly and naturally. We will continue to increase the number of entrepreneurs who relate their thoughts.