Whether it's sushi or ramen noodles, Japanese food is enjoying an unprecedented boom around the world. But Japanese food is much more than sushi, tempura or ramen – there are all kinds of processed foods and snacks, drinks and ingredients in Japan that are not readily available worldwide, such as sweet potatoes, Daiginjo (the most prized) sake or unique varieties of miso paste, just to name a few.
Despite having such an expansive food industry domestically, many Japanese food manufacturers face difficulties exporting their products as they lack the necessary knowledge, resources, and sales channels.
Global buyers also face a multitude of challenges when trying to purchase food from Japan. These include language barriers, and a lack of timely information on what's popular in the country. Some buyers have even reported venturing to trade shows just to find that the samples on display were not available for purchase.
Seeing an opportunity to address these issues, umamill Corp., a SoftBank Corp. (TOKYO: 9434) subsidiary established in 2019, launched its namesake platform “umamill.” Deriving its name from “umami,” the savory taste found in Japanese cuisine, and “mill,” the platform connects global buyers interested in purchasing Japanese food products with local Japanese food producers.
The umamill platform aims to create export opportunities for Japanese food manufacturers, and to promote greater selection for global food buyers by delivering products samples from Japanese food manufacturers to buyers overseas.
As products can be listed and samples can be shipped via the platform, food producers can conduct business meetings with global buyers without traveling. They can be assured that umamill will assist with all the necessary procedures for exporting food products.
Partnering with travel major HIS to create new export opportunities
Taking its business another step forward, on July 1, 2021, umamill announced a business alliance with HIS Co., Ltd., a major travel company headquartered in Japan. HIS provides market research services from 61 countries, 119 cities and 175 offices globally, and has clients in a wide range of industries, including the food production sector.
In this business alliance, HIS will promote the use of umamill's platform among its food manufacturing clients to help them address the issues they face when doing business globally.
HIS will also collaborate with umamill to provide information on how Japanese food products are received by global food buyers, as well as global demand trends for Japanese food. In this way, both companies will complement each other's services and platforms to support the growth of Japan's food export business.
umamill will continue to make exporting Japanese food easier for local food producers to help spread the culinary delights of Japan around the world.
(Posted on July 9, 2021)
by SoftBank News Editors