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Profile of KINPOU Brewer

1.Corporate Outline

Corporate Name: Niida-Honke Co., Inc.
President: Yasuhiko Niida 18th successor to the name of “穏” (Yasu)
Head Office: 139 Takayashiki, Kanezawa, Tamura-machi
Koriyama-shi, Fukushima prefecture
Business: Production & sales of sake
(also licensed to produce and sell all items classified as oturui shochu (singly-distilled shochu) and liquers)
Founded: 1711 (Shotoku Gannen)
Employees: 20
Flagship Brand: Kinpou Shizenshu
Taxed Annual Shipment Volume: approx. 1600 goku (equivalent to 288 kl) (during the fiscal period from July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009)

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2.Spirit of Niida Honke

Corporate Philosophy

The company will keep its word that they give to customers.
The employees will be fully committed and loyal to the company.
All personnel will strive to realize their own dreams.

Mission

To commit ourselves in protecting Japan’s genuine rice fields.

Aims/Ambitions

To celebrate our 300th anniversary in 2011, the company will aim to exclusively brew Junmaishu, literally meaning “pure rice sake with no alcohol added” solely with Shizenmai rice, naturally grown rice (no pesticides/no chemical fertilizers).

All personnel will be cognizant with every stage of the cropping/brewing/selling process.

The company will help Tamura-machi, where it is located, to become an authentic countryside.

Corporate Goals in 2010

The company will make the best use of what the personnel have learned through sake rice farming in its rice fields, and brewing as a team.

Each individual will achieve one’s own goal.

The company will acquire JAS (Japanese Agricultural Standards) certifications for organic agricultural products, and organic agricultural processed foods.
(The company was accredited for the two above-mentioned certifications in September, 2009 and February, 2010, respectively.)

Tastes We Have Been Aiming For and Three Core Products(Brand Concepts)

The Principle:

The company aims to produce tasty sake that we ourselves can appreciate as being delicious

Shizenshu Brand
Sweet sake with thick sweetness and mellow richness
(produced with the original 4-stage preparation process)
Odayaka Brand
In April, 2007, the Odayaka brand was selected as the very first product of Fukushima-prefecture-accredited original brands.
In February, 2010, the Odayaka brand was again accredited to this.

Mild sake with high-quality richness and refreshing flavor
(This brand was started in 1994.)
Tamura Brand
This brand is made using rice cropped from self-owned rice fields.
Dry sake with a robust taste of rice, high-quality flavor and a sharp finish

(The company started this brand in 1997, 30 years after Shizenshu production began, in order to express our deepest gratitude to the people and the town of Tamura where the company is located.)

Origin of the Brand Name

The place where the company is located was called “金沢村” (Kanezawa-mura village), and our Yagou, literally meaning “house name”, was “寳来屋” (Houraiya) at that time. Our brand name, Kinpou, came from “金” and “寳” of “寳来屋 in 金沢村”. (“金” has two ways of reading, kane and kin.)

Rice

Shizenmai rice, grown without any pesticides or chemical fertilizers, is raised by four contracted farming groups, three of which are based in Fukushima prefecture. It was in 1967 that the company started to brew Kinpou Shizenshu with 100% Shizenmai rice. Today, over 40 years later, the company is proud to be known as pioneers in using Shizenmai rice as an ingredient.

98% of rice used by the company in 2009 was Shizenmai rice, and 56% of all Shizenmai rice was accredited with Organic JAS. Average rice polishing ratio was 66%.

The area of Shizenmai rice in self-owned rice fields is approx. 3.5ha. in 2010.

An objective is to perfect Shizenmai rice brewing to 100%, and aim to realize this by our 300th anniversary.

Kinds of Shizenmai
Yume-no-ka: Fukushima-original rice suitable for brewing sake
Koji rice of the Shizenshu brand
Ippon-jime: Descended from Gohyakuman-goku
Grown in self-owned rice fields
Used for brewing the Tamura brand
Miyama-nishiki,
Gohyakuman-goku:
Koji rice and Kake rice of the Odayaka brand
Chiyo-nishiki: Kake rice of the Shizenshu brand
Koji rice and Kake rice of Shun-mi, Junmai cooking
sake made from rice, rice koji, and water (no alcohol added)
Toyo-nishiki: Grown by a contracted farmer in Miyagi prefecture
Kake rice of the Shizenshu Brand
Self-owned rice Fields: Challenges

The company is studying ways to utilize rice straw, chaff, rice bran, grass on ridges of rice fields, bamboo etc. to make special fertilizer which we call “fertilizer of Tamura”.

Our rice fields are manually weeded with Taguruma (weeding gear) and Notostrace, a.k.a. tadpole shrimps are kept (the shrimps eat weeds in rice fields). In addition, events called “FUREAI TAIKEN” are held, in which volunteers are invited to take part in rice farming and to help to protect Japan’s genuine rice fields.

On April 25, 2009, Niida Honke Agri Corporation was founded.

On September 14, 2009, our rice was accredited with an organic farm products certification by Organic JAS.

Water

The company uses a blend of natural water from two sources. One is “Takenouchi no Idomizu” near our rice fields, which is hard well-water, and the other is “Mizunuki no Wakimizu”, which is soft water flowing underground from the company’s mountain.

The water is used in all processes including the washing of rice and the cleaning of tanks.

It is another important task for us to protect natural water.

Clean Sakagura,,sake cellar

As sake is something our customers consume, we pay the strictest attention to hygiene and engage in thorough cleaning every day so that customers can feel secure about the sake brewed in our cellars.

Our Sakagura has thick beams and flooring painted with “Kakishibu”, which is special paint collected from astringent persimmons.We believe our thickly-plastered Sakagura gives a calm and tranquil atmosphere and is well worth a visit.

Business Motto

To understand and fully satisfy the needs and wishes of our customers, as well as being closely connected to them both in a personal and business manner, the company strives to realize our motto:
“Customers can see the face of brewers, and the brewers can see the face of customers through our sake”

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Niida Honke makes a genuine product for true sake lovers.

Our sake is brewed using only rice grown without pesticides and chemical fertilizers. You’ll know it’s no ordinary sake.
The thick, full-bodied flavor resonates with the Japanese DNA and the love for our staple food, rice.

It is nice meeting with you, I am Yasuhiko Niida,
the company's 18th Kuramoto (The president of a brewery).
People often ask me, “What does mean SHIZENSHU of KINPO SHIZENSHU?”
"SHIZENSHU" is brewed with Organic rice-No pesticides, No Chemical Fertilizers which we grown on self- owned rice fields
Unfortunately the pressure on costs has too often caused traditional processes to be abbreviated in producing both rice and sake.
We want to make a truly delicious safe sake and thus choose to insist on “SHIZENSHU”.
A lot goes into making this “SHIZENSHU”.(We even go out and weed the rice fields. )
But there’s nothing we wouldn’t do to hear you say “this sake is tasty.” Please taste our “SHIZENSHU”.
To sake lovers and even people who aren’t so fond of sake, we invite you to experience a real sake.

“SHIZENSHU” is like our child. “SHIZENSHU” answers by all means if I pour love.

Each grain of rice is a treasure, a crown of all the hard work by the brewers. And the master brewer’s skill comes in extracting the flavor, edge and aroma from the finest rice. Not too gentle, nor too strict -patiently, and with care. It’s just like raising a child. If you give it love like you would your own child, it will always respond. This year we have again been able to make “KINPO SHIZENSHU” that is infinitely close to what we have always aimed for.

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We would like to introduce to you our commitment that goes into every last drop of sake.

Brewing sake is by absolutely no means a one-man job. A tasty sake is made only with the work of many brewers. We would like to introduce to you our commitment that goes into every last drop of sake.

Master of a yeast brewer Morihiro Niida

While growing natural rice as a paddy cultivator, it has been fourteen years since being in charge of sake-making during the brewing period, and seven years since taking care of brewing yeast.
Yeast brewing is the first stage that determines the taste of sake. Finely adjusting temperatures, the key lies in how you can produce as much good quality yeast as you can.

Master of an analyst Katsuko Yoshida

We carefully analyze the state of “mash” to direct the ensuing tasks taken on by the brewers. Precision and accuracy are a must in data measurement.
To make the best “KINPO SHIZENSHU”, we glare at subtle temperature changes and analyze the data of each brewing tank.

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Why is “Shizennshu”good? Here are reasons…

Organic rice ? No Pesticides, No Chemical Fertilizers

Primary ingredient of sake is rice. Rice determines taste of sake.
That is why we are very meticulous on rice.
Our rice is grown both at our own and contracted rice fields that meet very strict standards.

・Base fertilizer must be compost from rice straw, rice husk, rice bran, rice husk or wheat husk.
・Fertilizer must be organic fertilizer, no top-dressing after heading.
・No pesticides, weeding to be done manually or with manual devices.
・Make a report of activities and rice fields management.

The above are only a few of our rules. These are just examples of 16 basic rules.

Brewing water, similar to rice, is another main ingredient of sake.

There are two veins flows into our brewery.
First is a subsoil underflow from our self-owned mountain, called “Mizunuki no wakimizu”.
The spring provides soft water from the runoff of rain and snow absorbed and filtered in the terrain over hundreds of years. Its low mineral content makes it perfectly suited for the gentle flavor of “ODAYAKA”.
The other is “Takenouchi no Idomizu”, natural water source located near our own rice fields.
This water is hard, containing just the right amount of minerals such as calcium and magnesium, providing us with the thick flavor of “Kinpo-Shizenshu”.

Our original 4-stages preparation process, are with three-hundred years of history.

Niida Honke began brewing sake from Shotoku Gannen, Edo period(1711)

Ever since, we have carried with us the principle that “sake must be a healthy drink” and have always used meticulously chosen rice and water. Today, our “SHIZENSHU” is still made with the original and unchanging 4-stage preparation process that was used three hundred years ago.

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