Okayama University


Okayama University Partners With Minamoto Kitchoan Holdings, Co. Ltd.

January 22, 2021

On January 21, Okayama University entered into an official agreement with Japanese confectionary manufacturer and retailer Minamoto Kitchoan Holdings, Co. Ltd. The agreement facilitates joint research and mutual exchange between researchers and developers.

Minamoto Kitchoan Holdings, Co. Ltd. operates in affiliation with the manufacturing and sales company Minamoto Kitchoan Co., Inc. under the brand name “K. Minamoto” to develop high quality Japanese confectionary. They have 470 stores across Japan, with a flagship store located in Ginza, Tokyo. Known as one of Japan’s leading Japanese confectionary brands, they have also expanded overseas and have international stores located in over 5 countries.

Okayama University received an offer from Minamoto Kitchoan Holdings, Co. Ltd. to collaborate on research for a new business venture based on the concepts of “fermentation” and “health in a post-corona/with corona society”. The company’s commitment to achieving the SDGs in the food industry perfectly aligns with Okayama University’s dedication to achieving the SDGs as a university promoting SDGs-related research. Furthermore, as both organizations wish to contribute to the local community by expanding regional revitalization in Okayama, this partnership will serve as the perfect catalyst to increase their relative activity in the area.

The partnership agreement facilitates the development of health-conscious confectionary using fermentation technology that utilizes local agricultural and livestock products while also reducing and recycling waste created during the food manufacturing process. Additionally, the agreement encourages the development of skilled members of society who can contribute to the achievement of SDGs and regional revitalization by supporting the education and mutual exchange of Okayama University students and researchers and Minamoto Kitchoan Holdings, Co. Ltd. researchers and developers.

At the signing ceremony, Okayama University President MAKINO Hirofumi and Minamoto Kitchoan Holdings, Co. Ltd. President OKADA Kemmei signed the partnership agreement. Afterwards, President Makino said, “I hope that the results of our joint research will be made widely known both inside and outside of Japan and that the power of the “K. Minamoto” brand will help revitalize the area as more people become aware of Okayama and its surrounding regions.” President Okada added, “I hope that our collaboration with Okayama University will help us reach our goal of becoming a company that contributes to society through the food industry.
Through our joint research on fermented foods, we hope to develop health-conscious confectionary that will convey the beauty and excellence of Okayama.”