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Over the time, unfortunately, some breweries have disappeared.
Mr. Kawaharazaki of Marukawaya Liquor Shop (Shizuoka City) told me (January 19th, 2007) that there existed more than a 100 active before WWII. He told me to check with the Shizuoka Tax Office who apparently still holds the files. Which I did on the 22nd of January 2007.
In 1976, there were still 56 “kura”.
There will be only 33 left in April 2007, although Fuuki does not qualify, as it is only a bottling plant despite their naming of a traditional 72 l. cask found in Sengen Shrine in Shizuoka City. On the other hand Sogatsuru has been bought by Hagi No Hara and is no longer brewed under its name only, but as Sogatsuru-Hagi No Kura.
Check the figures below from 1975 to 2008.
I finally got my hands on the listing of 78 Brewers in existence between 1953 and 1958 when the Japanese Government created new tax laws and encouraged the trade.
The reasons for their disappearance were either economical, lack of like-minded siblings, absorption, or in many cases the breweries’ inability to keep up with the new standards in Shizuoka Prefecture and to sell their sake to a more exacting clientele.
The list below includes all Sake Breweries which have disappeared since 1953 (the date in brackets indicate the year they ceased operating) with the addition of others that existed before WWII
Fuji-Isami (includes Reihoo) (1997)
Ginpai Brewery in Shimizu absorbed by Sanwa Brewery (958)
Heiwa Brewery (1967)
Katsuyama Brewery (includes Waraisenryo) (1994)
Koizumi Honkei Brewery in Shimizu absorbed by Sanwa Brewery (1953)
Shimizu Brewery in Shimizu absorbed by Sanwa Brewery (1971)
Shizuoka Brewery (includes Fukurei) (1967)
Iwamoto Brewery (includes Matsuwaka Midori, Shikon) The last generation married into the family owning Sanwa Brewery in Shimizu City.
Okada Brewery (includes Benten, Okinabenten) (March 2007). Was called Fuji Brewery and at one time. Owner had to stop operating his own brewery because of heart problems. Is presently employed by another Brewery.
Otsuka Brewery (includes Agatazuru) (1959)
Tadara Brewery (includes Azumatsuru, Kiku no Tsuyu) (2004)
Fukumi Brewery (1971)
Kataoka Brewery (includes Shiratama) (1971)
Shuen Brewery (1955) absorbed by Kataokoa Brewery
Wakasugi Brewery (includes Shizunami) (1958)
Tancho Honten Brewery(brewed “oke-uri for Fuuki in Shimizu City) (1995)
Matsumoto Kaiji Brewery (1955)
Matahei Brewery (includes Kikuizumi) (1971)
Jindaiko Brewery (1987)
Fuji Gun:Sunshuu Brewery (includes Yooroo) (1971)
Kakegawa City:Suikun (1967)
Has been bought by Hagi No Hara Brewery (2004)
Iwata City:Chuo Brewery (includes Otokoyama) (1968)
Oguro Brewery (includes Otokoyama) (1968) Absorbed by Senju Brewery.
Sankyo Kyodo Brewery, later known as Onotaki Brewery (1971).
Yamashita Brewery (includes Homarefuji) (1956)
Hamana Gun (presently in Hamamatsu City):
Chuubu Brewery/Tenryuu Brewery (includes Kiri) (1995)
Hamana Brewery (includes Biraku ) (1972)
Hasshou Brewery (1989)
Kondo Atsuji Brewery (includes Hamananishiki) (1968)
Hamakita City (presently Hamamatsu City)
Tenryu Brewery (also includes Juri, Nihoikoi, Otomegiru):
Mabuchi Junichiro Brewery (includes Hairaku, Kokueki) (2003)
Omura Kei Brewery (includes Munenaka) (1968)
Suzuki Brewery (includes Nyushin) (1994)
Sato Takuji Brewery (includes Kunroo) (1989)
Yoshiwara (presently in Fuji City)
Yamanaka Shokichi Brewery (1970) absorbed by Fuji-Takasago Brewery
Fujinomiya City:Fuji Brewery (1958)
Okaneya Brewery (includes Yugyoku) (1970)
Fuji-Ichi Brewery (1986)
Kobayakawa Brewery, later known as Mishimaya Honten Brewery (1989)
Yamanaka Chuueimon Brewery (1984)
Numazu Brewery, previously known as Nagakura taro Brewery (1981)
Toyou Brewery (includes Kikugenji, Genji) absorbed by Asahi Kasei Kogyou (2004)
Kaiki Brewery (includes Izuumi) (1997) Absorbed by watanabe Brewery
Inoue Brewery (1972)
Akebono Brewery Used to be located in Yaizu City until shortly after WWII
Used to be located in Kadoya, Shizuoka City
Used to be located in Kita bancho, Shizuoka City
Sekibe Fujinami BreweryUsed to be located in Mochimune, Shizuoka City
Used to be located Anzai, Shizuoka City.
Used to be located in Kawagochi Cho in Shizuoka City.
Used to be located in Komagata, Shizuoka City before WWII. Not to be confused with other Tadara Brewery after WWII. Sold its brand name Reihoo to Fuji isami Brewery
Used to be locate in Okabe Cho, Shida Gun.
Number of “kura” in existence year by year:1976 to 1980: 56