S&B Foods and Wasabi
S&B Foods: The number one name in wasabi
Tube wasabi has become a household item in Japan and throughout the world thanks largely to S&B Foods, the first company ever to offer this version of wasabi. We first sold hot mustard paste in a tube in 1970 and launched tube wasabi in 1972.
Before then people who wanted to cook with wasabi had to either grate it fresh or use the powdered version mixed with water. Fresh wasabi was expensive, and the powdered version was inconvenient whenever a small amount of wasabi was needed. It was S&B that came up with the idea of dispensing wasabi from a tube — a convenience that ensured use of just the right amount anytime — and freed people from the chore of grating. After that tube condiments quickly became an indispensable part of Japanese home cooking. In fact, this type of condiment now makes up about half of all condiments and spices sold in Japan.
Why tube wasabi doesn't lose its kick
If grated wasabi is left out too long, it loses its kick. So why doesn’t the same thing happen to wasabi in a tube?
Over the years Japanese have developed various techniques for preserving food products, among them the skills of marinating and pickling. Tube condiments make use of these traditional preservation methods and combine them with cutting-edge technologies to assure long-lasting spiciness and aroma.
S&B Foods has made several improvements to our tube products since their introduction in 1970. We have played a major role in building Japan’s unique condiment market and today hold a 60% share of the domestic tube-condiment market.
|1987 –||Developed high-end tube wasabi by using higher-quality ingredients and processing methods.|
|1989 –||Introduced soft, clear plastic tubes.|
|1996 –||Introduced perforated, easy-open cartons that split with the touch of a finger and store neatly in the refrigerator.|
|2006 –||Developed a new square, easy-twist cap.|
S&B quality control: Maintaining peak freshness
Our comprehensive quality control system allows us to offer wasabi products that are consistent in quality and always safe.
From Mt. Fuji to the world
S&B Foods helped usher traditional wasabi culture into the modern age by developing different varieties of the plant. Each is the result of collecting different wasabi seeds from around Japan and using them to create the perfect strain for our prepared products.
We carry out R&D at Oshino Research Farm. Located in the shadow of iconic Mt. Fuji, the area is blessed with perfect conditions for growing wasabi: a cool, wet climate and clear water from the mountain’s pristine snow. It is here that S&B has used snowmelt for years to help develop new and improved wasabi strains.
Wasabi from Vietnam
In order to reliably deliver high-quality wasabi products to Japan and the rest of the world, S&B has begun wasabi cultivation projects outside Japan, one of which is our Vietnam Wasabi Project.
Wasabi plants thrive in cool mountainous regions with relatively little sunlight. In 1998 we started our first wasabi farm in the mountains of Dalat, Vietnam, where we worked with local people to grow wasabi plants. Dalat is a resort area located atop a high plateau and cool throughout the year with an average temperature below 20° C. It is in this ideal wasabi-growing climate that we engage in full-scale wasabi production, from seed planting and cultivation to processing wasabi as a food product. The system we have created ensures outstanding safety and quality.
We take seeds from wasabi breeds developed Oshino Research Farm and plant them in Vietnam. There the plants grow to maturity and are partially processed before being exported back to Japan — a fully integrated production system that extends from seeds to finished products of the highest safety and quality. Though only a few of our products use Vietnam-grown wasabi today, we are working to increase the amount of wasabi harvested there in the future.