The art and culture of Japanese fermentation is going global
As Kojicon 2022 was coming to a close, presenter Takashi Sato, president of San-J, unveiled a new website that brings Japanese fermentation traditions to the English-speaking world: hakkohub.com.
“Hakko” means “fermentation” Japanese, and Hakko Hub is a place to learn everything there is to know about the traditional ferments of Japan: shoyu (soy sauce), miso, mirin, and more.
In his presentation, Takashi talked about the decline of fermented food producers in Japan. As the population has declined and western-style food has become more commonplace, the market for these culturally significant products has declined. And yet, the interest in traditional Japanese fermented products continues to grow outside Japan. Takashi’s hypothesis is that connecting people outside of the country with these products, methods, and producers can help stymie the decline and perhaps even revitalize the industry. His hope is that this effort gets people all over the world more excited by these products and the rich variability that exists within Japan.
On the site, which just launched last month, you’ll find articles and recipes written by experts and lovers of fermented food such as:
- Marika Groen, author of Cosy Koji
- Kirsten Shockey, author of many books including Miso, Tempeh, Natto, and other Tasty Ferments, and co-founder of The Fermentation School
- Misaki Iwaki, a miso-making instructor
- Keiko Kuroshima, soy sauce sommelier
- Maho Tanabe, Mirin Sweets and Fermented Foods