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The Shokuhin Sangyo Shinbunsha News covers the transplanting of Kikusui variety sake-specific rice seedlings for the new growing season, in an event held by the Kikusui sake brewery.

The brewery, based in Shibata in Niigata Prefecture, hosted 185 locals and guests transplanting rice seedlings into the fields. They took around an hour to plant two fields with the young plants.

The Kikusui brewery plans to use the harvested rice to make their junmai daiginjo and junmai daiginjo genshu. (Priced at JPY 3,963 for 1.8 L/JPY 1,985 for 720 ml and JPY 10,000 for 1.8 L/JPY 5,000 for 720 ml respectively.)

President Daisuke Takasawa commented that they can only do what they do because of the natural environment. He hopes that the experience of working in the fields as part of the event will show people its importance. While there is an overwhelming amount of data, he hopes that a greater awareness will be born of hearing, seeing, feeling and using the five senses in a real encounter with nature.

Takasawa also stated that in addition to the terroir from the area where it is produced, the character of a sake comes from the technique of the kurabito and philosophy of the brewery owner. The brewery recently underwent an overhaul, after which they decided to use 100% Niigata Prefecture-produced rice for all their products, strengthening their ties to the area and increasing the strength of the terroir elements. They publicised this change and had a positive response from consumers, turning around their sales.

Adding that they don’t want to make an industrial product, Takasawa emphasised the agricultural, cultural and ecological aspects of their production and promised to keep on showing the charm and entertaining aspects of sake.