Oita Prefecture x 10 Sustainable Products Were Born!


Written by hakoboya

Oita Prefecture x 10 sustainable products

Hello! My name is Hakoboya!
I’ve been appointed as the “Souvenirs Advertising Captain” of Kodawari Times to introduce the wonderful local products of Japan to people all over the world!
I will be introducing the best products from all over Japan.
Let me start by introducing you to the latest products I found in Oita Prefecture.


Birth in the spring of 2024! 10 sustainable products filled with the bounty of nature in Oita

Oita Prefecture in Kyushu, famous for its abundance of Onsen (hot springs), has developed and marketed a product from a sustainable perspective!
The word “sustainable,” which I have been seeing a lot lately, means “able to continue over a period of time” in English. Currently, people around the world are beginning to work toward the realization of a “sustainable society” as a common goal. In other words, we are aiming for a society that can protect the rich environment and pass it on to future generations.
In Japan, many companies are accelerating their efforts to realize a sustainable society!

Oita Prefecture x 10 sustainable products

Ten companies were selected for this Oita Prefecture initiative, which are environmentally conscious in any stage of the product’s life cycle, from production to disposal. The project team worked together to develop and manufacture attractive products as Oita’s prefectural products, while building a sustainable corporate structure.

[Name of product/manufacturer]
●YUFUIN PICKLES (Souan Kosumosu Shiki Kobo/Yufu City)
●USUKI SAND (Goto Seika/Usuki City)
●FUGUHIRE (Yanai Shoten/Saeki City)
●KARAPON/AMAPON (Marumata Shoyu/Hita City)
●KURUMAEBI KARINTO PREMIUM (Oita Himeshima/Himeshima-mura, Higashikunisaki-gun)
●GOMADASHI (Fishing Village Women’s Group Mebaru/Saeki City)
●FLAVOR TEA (Niwa Chaho/Nakatsu City)
●FOREST MIST AONOKIRI(Hisatsune Sanrin/Nakatsu City)
[Project Team Composition]
●Branding Director: Junya Yamaide (Yamaide Art Office)
●Creative Director: Okisato Nagata (TIMELESS)
●Project Manager: Yuka Nakamura (Yamaide Art Office)

A new Oita product was born, one that will be passed on to the next generation! This is the same vision that Kodawari Times is aiming for, “to create a society where Japanese local products are loved and passed on from generation to generation”!

Here is a detailed introduction of 10 such carefully selected products from Oita!

Product information on 10 newly created companies


Using vegetables purchased from neighbors to connect producers and consumers.
Yufuin Pickles
Manufactured by: Souan Kosumosu Shiki Kobo (Yufu City)
¥756 Total Amount:150g, Solid Amount:90g

Bottled pickles filled with the best of the season
“Yufuin Pickles” are made from vegetables and fruits harvested in the “neighborhood” within a 30 km radius, about 30 minutes by car. The vegetable pickles are based on orange vinegar, grain vinegar, and white wine, while the fruit pickles are made with apple cider vinegar, which allows the mild acidity and original color of the ingredients to be preserved for a long time. The lively seasonal ingredients are bottled as they are.

Delivering vegetables to consumers with the hearts of neighborhood producers
Yufuin, located in the center of Oita Prefecture, is a place where people and goods come and go. The pickles produced by “Souan Kosumosu Shiki Kobo” in this hub area are made possible by the connections with neighbors. This product, named in the belief that the name “Yufuin” will carry the name of the area, will serve as a storyteller who spins the tale of the backbone of the producers and the culture they have built up over the years, and as a hub for consumers, will expand that circle into the future.

Design: Kazuki Kaneko (one inc. / Artless)


Usuki’s food culture and the charm of its ingredients “sandwich”
Yufuin Pickles
Manufactured by: Goto Seika (Usuki City)
¥648, Amount:3 pieces

Local ingredients and the beauty of handmade work = Usuki senbei
Since Usuki City used to be a major ginger producing area, “Usuki senbei” has been established as a local flavor with ginger seasoning. The honey made from a combination of ginger and sugar is carefully applied by hand, one by one, with a brush. This is a unique taste of Usuki born from the combination of local ingredients and the beauty of handwork. The product is a softer version of the traditional hard “Usuki Senbei” with Ogura-an (sweet bean paste) sandwiched between the rice crackers, and represents the company’s desire to “sandwich” people, companies, and local ingredients as a company that has been in business for more than 100 years.

Connecting “Usuki’s Food Culture” to the Next Stage
Goto Seika, which produces “Usuki Senbei” in Usuki City, Oita Prefecture, a city certified as a UNESCO Creative City for Food Culture, will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2019. In order to produce ginger that can be eaten with peace of mind, the company also grows its own organic ginger.

Design: Yuu Inoshita (INOSHITA DESIGN)


The adorable blowfish-shaped package makes FUGUHIRE more familiar and approachable.
Manufactured by: Yanai Shoten (Saiki City)
¥378, Amount:2 sheets

FUGUHIRE are perfect for souvenirs or for your own enjoyment
FUGUHIRE(Puffer fish fins), a favorite for 15 years, have been renewed in a miniature size of 2 pieces, which are even easier to pick up. Simply add the fuguhire to hot sake, cover, and wait 30 seconds to enjoy the delicious fin sake. If you give it as a souvenir, it is sure to spark pleasant conversation.

“Fugu Increases the Blessings of Society”
One of the main characteristics of fugu is that, except for the poisonous internal organs, the meat, skin, and fins can also be eaten. Saiki City, located in the southern part of Oita Prefecture, is a region with a thriving fisheries industry, with the Rias coast adjacent to the Bungo Channel to the east. When Yanai Shoten was founded in 1980, there were no businesses in Saiki City that could process fugu, so the company’s predecessor began processing fugu, a business that has been passed down to the present. The company is also working on the development of new products with the hope of “making fugu more familiar and spreading happiness through it.”

Illustration: Ai Kawai (Chalkart CHOCOTTO) / Design: Maya Fukuda (Hoshiniwa)


A new sweet and tasty ponzu for spicy food is now available. Proposing a new food culture with sweet ponzu and communicating the charm of the region
Manufactured by: Marumata Shoyu (Hita City)
¥626 Amount: 150ml

Ponzu vinegar produced in Hita, the water village at the navel of Kyushu
Marumata Shoyu, which since its establishment has built an integrated manufacturing system in which all processes are carried out in-house in order to pursue original flavors, will release a repackaged version of its existing product “AMAPON” and a small quantity size of its newly introduced “KARAPON”. The “AMAPON” is a product with a strong flavor that is gentle to those who do not like sourness and to children, and is made from fresh kabosu, a specialty of Oita Prefecture. For those who prefer a spicier taste, we have also added “KARAPON” to “AMAPON” by adding raayu (Chinese red chili oil) and hot chili peppers.

Creating a New Food Culture and Communicating Local Attractions
Hita City in Oita Prefecture is known for its abundant water resources, including the Mikuma River. It is said that Matashichiro Aihara, the founder of Marumata Syoyu, started soy sauce production because of this abundant water resource, and the company has been engaged in the brewing business, mainly soy sauce, since its establishment in 1859. With the desire to convey the resources and charms of the region together, the company developed “ama-ponzu” (sweet ponzu vinegar), which has a strong sweetness and flavor like Kyushu soy sauce. We will create a new food culture of sweet and delicious ponzu vinegar and convey the charms of the land.

Illustration: Youji Yamauchi / Design: Tsuyoshi Echida (Design totte)


Sweets with the flavor of Himeshima Japanese tiger prawns and natural aosa seaweed, made from the whole prawns from head to tail
Manufactured by: Oita Himeshima (Himeshima-mura, Higashikunisaki-gun)
¥540 Amount:20g x 2 bags

A remote island recognized as a Geopark. Enjoy the delicacies of the sea!
“KURUMAEBI KARINTO” is a popular product enjoyed by children and adults alike, rich in flavor and full of nutrients, made with luxurious ingredients such as kurumaebi (Japanese tiger prawns) caught on Himeshima Island and natural aosa seaweed. The new package is easy to eat up.

Aiming to Increase the Value of Himeshima and Realize Sustainable Island Living
Himeshima, a remote island formed by volcanic activity about 300,000 years ago, is located off the Kunisaki Peninsula in Oita Prefecture and is recognized as one of 46 Geoparks in Japan. Although blessed with beautiful nature, the island is experiencing a decline in its cultivated industries due to a shrinking population. Oita Himeshima, which is mainly engaged in the food processing business, is expanding its business to create a safe environment for people to live on Himshshima, Japanese tiger prawns and other seafood caught on the island and marketing them outside the island. The company aims to create an environment where anyone can choose to live on the island with peace of mind.

Design: Yuu Inoshita (INOSHITA DESIGN)


A taste of home in Saiki City. A local seasoning born in a fishing village that whets the appetite with the flavor of fish and the aroma of sesame seeds
Manufactured by: Fishing Village Women’s Group Mebaru (Saiki City)
¥670 Amount:80g (2 servings)

Local Food Gomadashi Handmade by Fisherman’s Wife
Gomadashi is a local food in Saiki City, Oita Prefecture, which has been passed down as an all-purpose dashi mixed with grilled fish and seasonings. The fishing village women’s group “Mebaru”, has repackaged the popular “GAMADASHI,” which is made from fresh seasonal fish carefully prepped by fishermen’s wives and maximizes the flavor of the fish, into a ready-to-eat size that can be enjoyed more easily. It can be used in a variety of ways, such as as a soup stock, combined with miso, added to pasta in place of anchovies, or tossed with mayonnaise. Enjoy the local flavor.

We bring the best of the fishermen’s fish to the nation. Delivering the Taste of the Sea to the Nation
Tsurumi Port, located in the Tsurumi district of the fishing town of Saiki City, Oita Prefecture, is a good fishing ground where seawater from the Seto Inland Sea and the Pacific Ocean mix, and boasts the highest catch in the prefecture. The fishing village women’s group “Mebaru” is not only conveying the food culture of the sea’s delicacies, but also playing a role in stabilizing the fishery business and creating a cycle in the community. They also play a role in stabilizing the fishery business and creating a cycle in the local community.

Design: Yuu Inoshita (INOSHITA DESIGN)


Set of sliced dried shiitake mushrooms that can be easily reconstituted and a “shiitake mushroom reader” full of the charms of shiitake mushrooms
Manufactured by: Ousho Shiitake (Usuki City)
¥540 Amount:Dried shiitake mushrooms (sliced) 15g *A book “Shiitake Mushroom Reader” is included as an appendix.

Minimal time and effort to rehydrate. You can easily taste flavorful dried shiitake mushrooms!
Oita Prefecture is Japan’s largest producer* of dried shiitake mushrooms, accounting for half of the nation’s production. Natural cultivation on logs is based on pesticide-free cultivation and plays a role in maintaining the cycle of the forest. Normally, dried shiitake mushrooms need to be rehydrated in water for at least 5 hours, but “dried shiitake mushroom slices” can be easily used with minimal rehydration time of only 30 minutes to 1 hour, while maintaining nutrition and taste. Another advantage is that after rehydration, they can be cooked without cutting. *Reference: From “Production Results of Shiitake Mushrooms by Prefecture, Basic Data on Forest Products for Special Purposes, 2020,” by Ousho Shiitake Co.

Bringing Nature’s Bounty to Your Table. Spreading the charm of dried shiitake mushrooms from Usuki City
In Usuki City, vegetables grown without using chemical pesticides and fertilizers are named “Honmanmon Nosanbutsu(Agricultural Products),” and the city has established its own certification system to promote organic agriculture. The company is spreading its charms.

Design: Maya Fukuda (Hoshitaniwa)


Encounter of discarded chive stems and GABA. Next-generation upcycled seasoning
Manufacturing by:LogStyle(Oita City)
¥1,080 Amount:140g

Encountering Oita’s specialty chives and the “GABA” produced in the sake brewing process
Nira Syoyu(chive soy sauce), which utilizes chive stems that were previously discarded, has gained popularity since its creation in 2019. The new “Nira Soy Sauce with GABA” adds GABA, which was accidentally discovered in the barley shochu “Iichiko” (Sanwa Shurui) produced in Oita Prefecture, to the “Nira Soy Sauce” from the barley shochu lees produced in the manufacturing process. An upcycled seasoning with an even richer taste and nutritional content has been created.

Always up for a challenge. Cultivating new souls and climates with the power of FOOD to create a sustainable future.
LogStyle, which also operates a ramen noodle business, was born out of a sense of “Mottainai” (what a waste) when 15% of the chives used to be discarded in the dishes they served. Today, the company has achieved an almost zero loss rate of the chives it purchases. As an in-house product that also addresses food loss, it is being promoted nationwide.

Design: Tsuyoshi Echida (Design totte)


Three flavored teas created in collaboration with attractive products from Oita Prefecture
Manufacturing by:Niwa Chaho(Nakatsu City)
¥540 Amount:10g (2.5g x 4pcs)

Three Flavored Teas Created through Connections with Local Producers
Niwa Chaho has been operating a Japanese tea specialty store in Nakatsu, Oita Prefecture since the Meiji Era(1868-1912). Cacao Sencha using cacao husk (seed husk of cacao beans) from HARU CHOCOLATE in Nakatsu City, Japanese black tea using the peel of original citrus “Macopon” from Ohara Kajuen FIRM in Nakatsu City, and Hojicha using pesticide-free ginger produced by Yadokari Company in Oita City were created.

Casually enjoying tea culture with a relaxed mind
As the existence of tea and its value as a teahouse change with the times, Niwa Chaho is expanding its business by changing its logo and packaging, opening a tea room, and other efforts to make tea culture more accessible by expanding what it has and weaving good things together with the people involved. By connecting local materials and people to create a regional cycle, we are transmitting a new tea culture.

Illustration: Michihiro Hori / Design: Koji Takahashi


A guide connecting people to the forest. Relaxing mist spray with forest scenes
Manufacturing by:Hisatsune Sanrin(Nakatsu City)
¥2,700 Amount:280ml

The scent of the forest in your daily life. Mist spray for daily life
This mist spray can be used in a variety of ways, including as a room mist, pillow mist, and fabric mist. The product name is derived from the “blue haze” phenomenon, in which the landscape appears blue when looking at distant mountains. The phytoncide that produces this blue haze, especially alpha-pinene, is said to relax and relieve tension in the body when taken in at a low concentration, similar to the air in a forest. In “FOREST MIST for sleep AONOKIRI,” you can enjoy its quiet, clear, forest-like scent.

The Beauty of Yabakei Valley Aiming to Realize a Society Where People and Forests Coexist in the Cycle of the Forest
Hisatsune Sanrin, based in Nakatsu City, Oita Prefecture, has started an aroma business using thinned wood from forestry operations in Yabakei. In today’s living environment where it is difficult to feel the breath of nature, the company does everything by hand, from forestation to plant collection, extraction at the distillery, filling, and labeling, in order to convey a “forest-conscious lifestyle” while facing nature. We use thinned cedar and cypress, which are coniferous trees, in consideration of the environment in which they grow, and we do not take too many broad-leaved trees beyond the pace of their growth.

Illustration: Izuru Aminaka / Design: Yurika Wakimizu (Arikui Labo)


How about a souvenir from Oita?

New products by 10 locally owned businesses. All of them were so interesting that I wanted to try them out one by one!
The backgrounds and efforts behind the development of the products are very impressive, such as using agricultural products grown in Oita and products created from food loss.

And the stylish and cute packaging design of all the products is very attractive! They are sure to please not only as a treat for yourself, but also as a souvenir or gift.
If you are ever in Oita, be sure to pick up one of the 10 sustainable products!

Click here for the online store
GIFTs from OITA (stores.jp)



Hello, I'm Hakoboya╰(·ᴗ·)╯Kodawari Times' souvenir promotion captain. I'll be introducing carefully selected souvenirs from all over Japan, including crafts, food, and household goods. Please use it as a reference when you travel!