Naka, Toshima Prefecture is an area surrounded by mountains on three sides.
Even deeper in the mountains lies Ogonnomura.
Ogonnomura is located in an area called Kito, and the nearest convenience store is about 1 hour away. For the modern Japanese person, this truly is a secluded region. But it is the perfect setting for a golden village. (Ogonnomura means Golden Village.)
In November, branches droop heavily with this shining, golden fruit, and farmers hurry to harvest it.
Yuzu grows everywhere in Japan, but the Kito yuzu is one of a kind. It was the first fruit tree to win the Asahi Newspaper Agriculture Award in 1977 – the greatest honor for any kind of produce, and it is still famous for maintaining its exquisite quality.
Ogonnomura Inc. was established with the aim of educating farmers and creating jobs in the area. To achieve this, they focus on this first-class specialty yuzu, and produce, process and sell it.
No chemical fertilizers or pesticides are used in growing the fruit, and it is hand-squeezed without any heat treatment and stored in glass bottles. It needs refrigerating, but you can really taste the full potential of the Kito yuzu in the juice. A 100ml bottle is 648 yen.
You only get this fresh aroma and rich sour flavor by hand-squeezing the fruit.
This is the fruit squeezer.
The yuzu peel is frozen and separated from the film, and then minced, steamed, and made into pure essential oil.
This is the steam distiller that is used to make the essential oil. 100g of peel only produces 0.4mg of oil.
As well as being sold as aroma oil, the essential oil is also used as the base of the 4RELAX cosmetics line.
They also offer bath salts and hand cream, which have a particular healing fragrance the Japanese just love.
You can buy all of these products on Ogonnomura’s homepage, so be sure to check it out.
Address: 46 Uehira Kitominamiu, Naka, Naka District, Tokushima Prefecture
Setouchi Finder Photo-writer: Kumiko Tobita
Kumiko Tobita I was born in 1973 and currently live in Tokushima Prefecture. I have been working at a publishing company in Tokushima for over 10 years now, and in addition to being the editor-in-chief of a monthly magazine, I also am involved in producing mooks, business pamphlets and websites. I always want to learn as fast as possible about delicious, fun, or new things. Feel free to ask if you have any questions about autobiographies, self-publication editing, or e-books. Since April 2015, I have been a part of an area development group, and my lifework involves regional resources and emigration measures.
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