Have you heard of Club Shoyu? Did you know that this shoyu has been brewed in Hilo since 1947? Teruo Togashi founded the company and created the recipe for this local product. He retired in the late 1970s and prior to retiring, he approached Ryuichi Yamada who was working for Y. Hata & Co. Ltd, the sole distributor of Club Shoyu at the time. Ryuichi and his son Bruce decided to go into the shoyu business and became the owners of Club Shoyu Brewery, Inc.
Bruce Yamada has worked in the family business and brewed shoyu since 1979. Julie Nagai, Bruce’s daughter, who grew up in the factory, also works closely with her father in the family business.
Club Shoyu has been a staple of Big Island markets, stores, hotels, and homes since 1947. Brewing a quality shoyu is not an easy process. It takes patience, consistency, and skill. The essential ingredient of Club Shoyu is soy powder which is a ready mix product. Originally, Mr. Togashi made shoyu the traditional way, using mashed soybeans. However, creating a batch of mashed soy took many months to complete fermentation. Since Mr. Togashi was educated as a chemist he used his knowledge of chemistry to refine the process of shoyu making to use soy powder and developed the process that is used today. Using the soy powder, processing takes just one week and Club Shoyu is ready for bottling.
Ever since Club Shoyu has been available, Big Island residents, hotels, and local restaurants have been using Club Shoyu. Club Shoyu is also widely distributed on Maui by VIP FoodService. You can also order it online through the Club Shoyu website. You can even find them on Facebook. Club Shoyu is also now entering the Las Vegas market. The wholesale distributors of Club Shoyu are Y. Hata & Co., Ltd.; Hilo Rice Mill Co., Ltd.; HFM Food Service, Hilo; Suisan Co., Ltd.; and Harbour Brokerage, Honolulu.
Bruce Yamada states that he has gained valuable knowledge about being a businessman, running a family business, and about the customers as he produces shoyu and runs his factory. The most important lessons Yamada has learned is appreciation, to always remember where we came from, how we came to be, and to appreciate everyone in the process.
This translates into appreciating the Club Shoyu customers by continuing to provide them with the same fine quality product, service, and flavor that they know and love about Club Shoyu. Living Hilo Style.
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