Tradition of Excellence


History of Kikkoman

Kikkoman’s history dates back to the 17th century, when the forefathers of the Mogi family began to produce the dark brown seasoning sauce from soy, wheat, water and salt in the Japanese town of Noda. The city's optimum location on the banks of the River Edo provided convenient access to raw materials and prompt deliveries to the expanding city of Edo, which is today called Tokyo. Dutch traders then discovered the “black gold” and brought it to Europe. Kikkoman soon became firmly established in the European market, where it received important awards at Expo Vienna in 1873 and Expo Amsterdam in 1881.

In 1917 the Japanese Mogi and Takanashi families founded Noda Shoyu Co. Ltd. The company name was changed to Kikkoman Shoyu Co. Ltd. in 1964 and to Kikkoman Corporation in 1980. Today, Kikkoman is the world soy sauce market leader and the sauce’s special full-bodied flavour is appreciated in more than 100 countries around the globe. And that’s not all - Kikkoman is also official supplier to the Japanese imperial court.

Kikkoman Today

The Kikkoman Group's roots are in the production and marketing of soy sauce. Millions of people around the globe know and use its naturally brewed soy sauce. However, Kikkoman is also involved in various related and unrelated lines of business in Japan and overseas. For example, Kikkoman has established subsidiaries and acquired shareholdings in companies in the sectors of pharmaceuticals, wines, liqueurs, fruit juices, tomato products and Asian food.

It also has subsidiaries in the restaurant and retail trades, such as the leading Japanese Daitokai restaurants in Berlin and Cologne. The JFC International Group, one of the biggest original Asian food wholesale companies, is also a full subsidiary of the Kikkoman Group.

Approx. 6,500 people shape the development of the Japanese coorporation at sites in Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, China, Australia, Canada, the USA and Europe. Kikkoman operates nine production facilities in Japan, the USA, Singapore, Taiwan, China and the Netherlands. Approx. 400 million litres of naturally brewed soy sauce are transported from there every year to the supermarkets, delicatessen stores and Asia shops.

" We now produce enough Soy Sauce to fill four Olympic swimming pools every year. "

The story behind our logo

Kikkoman is one of only a few genuine soy sauce brands. It is known and appreciated by people all over the world for its quality. For centuries now, naturally brewed soy sauce has been used to season Asian cuisine, predominantly in Japan. Kikkoman naturally brewed soy sauce today enhances the flavour of foods in many different countries - from the Mediterranean to Scandinavia and Asia to America. It is no coincidence that Kikkoman is the world soy sauce market leader.

The name Kikkoman® has a special meaning, like many Japanese names. "Kikko" means turtle shell in Japanese and "man" means 10,000. According to Japanese legend, turtles live to be 10,000 years old and are symbolic of happiness, success and longevity. These are also things that a company hopes for, which is why the name Kikkoman and the logo were developed many, many years ago. The characteristic hexagon consists of a symbolic turtle shell and the Japanese kanji character for the number 10,000, uniting “tradition” and “innovation”.

Seasoning your life

Seasoning your life is our international slogan. It is founded on the principle that Kikkoman unites a 300 year-old Japanese soy sauce making tradition with a modern, healthy lifestyle. Our brand promise is “Enjoy the good things in life!” and Kikkoman soy sauce is definitely one of those good things. As the perfect universal seasoning, it augments the cuisine of many different countries. Naturally brewed soy sauce provides consumers with a very special flavour experience as a result of its indescribable, full-bodied flavour (umami).

" Kikkoman seasons people’s lives and unites different dining cultures "

Kikkoman seasons people’s lives and unites different dining cultures – a very important aspect of our corporate philosophy – as well as staying close to consumers and satisfying the very highest quality standards. In fact, Kikkoman brand products are renowned for their excellent quality and unique flavour.


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