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How Soy Sauce Has Been Made in Japan for Over 220 Years — Handmade

October 1, 2023

How Soy Sauce Has Been Made in Japan for Over 220 Years — Handmade

October 1, 2023

  The traditional production of soy sauce in Japan, as practiced by Masatsugu Fueki at Fueki Syoyu Brewing for over 220 years, is a testament to the rich heritage and craftsmanship that goes into this iconic condiment. In this formal and informative description, we will explore the traditional handmade process of soy sauce production:

Traditional Handmade Soy Sauce Production in Japan

For over two centuries, Fueki Syoyu Brewing has been producing soy sauce using the same time-honored methods, passed down through generations. The process is characterized by its simplicity, relying on only three core ingredients: soybeans, flour, and salt. 1. Ingredient Selection:
  • The process begins with the careful selection of high-quality soybeans, which serve as the foundation of the soy sauce's flavor.
  • Wheat flour is also chosen for its specific characteristics and is a key component in the production.
2. Steaming and Roasting:
  • The soybeans are steamed and roasted to bring out their unique flavors.
  • This step is crucial in achieving the desired depth of taste in the soy sauce.
3. Koji Cultivation:
  • After steaming and roasting, the soybeans are mixed with wheat flour and a special type of mold called "koji."
  • Koji plays a pivotal role in fermenting the mixture and breaking down starches into simpler sugars.
4. Natural Fermentation:
  • The mixture, known as "moromi," is placed in wooden fermentation tanks.
  • It is left to naturally ferment for an extended period, typically months or even years.
  • During fermentation, the enzymes from koji and naturally occurring microorganisms transform the mixture into soy sauce.
5. Pressing and Separation:
  • Once fermentation is complete, the moromi is pressed to extract the liquid, which is the soy sauce.
  • The solid remnants are used for other purposes, reducing waste.
6. Filtration and Aging:
  • The extracted soy sauce undergoes filtration to remove any remaining solids.
  • It is then aged in wooden barrels to develop its complex flavor profile.
7. Bottling and Packaging:
  • The final soy sauce is carefully bottled and labeled for distribution.


Masatsugu Fueki's dedication to preserving the traditional handmade process of soy sauce production is a testament to the cultural significance of this condiment in Japan. This time-honored method, relying on minimal ingredients and natural fermentation, results in a soy sauce with a deep and rich flavor profile that has been cherished for generations. The continuity of such craftsmanship highlights the importance of heritage and tradition in food production.   Video Duration: 00:14:33  

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How Soy Sauce Has Been Made in Japan for Over 220 Years — Handmade
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