Collaborative Class with Fukushima College on the Theme of "Product Development Using Sake Lees"
With the aim of realizing "a simple, pleasant life" and "a simple, pleasant society," MUJI is participating in various initiatives to revitalize the local community led by local governments and residents.
This time, we received an invitation from Fukushima College asking whether it would be possible to conduct a product development class using local products from Fukushima Prefecture, and we cooperated in four classes held in October. The purpose of this class was to learn marketing skills by case-studying MUJI’s product development, and to acquire the skills to develop products using local resources while solving local issues at the same time. The theme of the class was to develop products from sake lees made by Suzuki Sake Brewery in Namie Town, Fukushima Prefecture (which was affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake and is currently operating in Nagai City, Yamagata Prefecture).
The final presentation was held on October 23, and various products were proposed, including baby powder made from sake lees and Eustoma russellianum – a specialty grown in Namie Town; craft gin made by pickling the fruit peels in Kasutori Shochu (a kind of alcohol made by distilling the sake lees); and fruit bars made by combining dried fruit and honey from Fukushima with sake lees, and so on. These proposals will be considered for commercialization when Suzuki Sake Brewery resume its operation in Namie Town for the first time in 10 years in March next year.
The person in charge from Social Good Business Unit, who has promoted the initiative, said, “About a decade has passed since the Great East Japan Earthquake. This is a good opportunity to learn about the efforts being made in the region towards reconstruction. The cooperation in product development utilizing local specialties was also a useful way to contribute to reconstruction. We will consider the commercialization of these products from now on, so please look forward to them.” Let’s stay updated with the future developments.