ARCHIVED ONLINE EVENT - Making Senbei Since 1909: The Story of Domoto Seika
Saturday 9 October 2021
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Free – Donations Welcome
All are welcome to attend. Japan Society members attending from the UK will receive* a complimentary sample pack of Domoto Seika rice crackers, including unbaked ones to cook at home, together with an A4 folder featuring the company’s original design.
*While stocks last
The activities of the Japan Society are made possible thanks to the support of its members. This event is free of charge and open to all. We realise that this is a difficult time for many people. However, if you are planning to attend and do not have a membership subscription as an individual or through your employer, please consider making a donation. You can find details of membership and how to join the Japan Society community here.
The Japan Society is pleased to welcome Masaya Domoto, vice president of Domoto Seika, a 112-year-old senbei (rice cracker) company based in Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture. In this special online event, Masaya will introduce his fifth-generation family business, while attendees will have the opportunity to sample Domoto Seika’s rice crackers, as well as the chance to try freshly baked senbei at home.
Domoto Seika was founded in 1909 by Rokuzaemon Domoto as a rice cracker manufacturer in Honjo-ku (now Sumida-ku), Tokyo. In 1913, the company moved to Hachioji, and again to Kawasaki in 1929 where they are now based. Over the generations, Domoto Seika has adapted its business in response to the changing times, circumstances and economic conditions such as the transition from wholesale to retail as well as developing new products and new means of marketing. Today, their signature product has become a popular Kawasaki specialty: Daishi-maki, deep-fried rice crackers wrapped in dried seaweed, reminiscent of a Buddhist priest wearing a kesa (Buddhist robe).
This is a rare opportunity to gain an insight into one of the working shinise (traditional) businesses in Japan, which continue to evolve and reinvent themselves over generations.
Members attending from the UK will receive a complimentary sample pack of Domoto Seika senbei, including unbaked ones to try cooking at home, along with the company’s exclusive A4 folder with Hiroshige Utagawa’s Fifty-three Stations on the Tokaido: Rokugo Ferry at Kawasaki and images showing the senbei making process in the style of Frolicking Animals and Humans, which is believed to be the very first manga in Japan. Please note that sample packs are limited.
Masaya Domoto is the fifth-generation vice president at Domoto Seika. He aspired to become a professional snowboarder as a student, but after a fire destroyed a third of the factory in 2012, he returned to take up the family business with his mother, Noriko (Rokuzaemon IV), the current president of the company.
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- All are welcome to attend. Japan Society members attending from the UK will receive* a complimentary sample pack of Domoto Seika rice crackers, including unbaked ones to cook at home, together with an A4 folder featuring the company’s original design. *While stocks last
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