Description: In 1869, the new Meiji government set about developing Hokkaido, establishing a Kaitakushi (the national government Hokkaido Development Commission).
Thereafter, over more than a decade until the post was abolished, many businesses were developed on this northern Japanese island. One of them was the brewing of beer.
In June 1876, Seibei Nakagawa, who had recently returned from Germany where he studied the art of beer making, was chosen as brewmaster to oversee construction of a beer factory. That September, the Kaitakushi Brewery was completed.
The following year, Sapporo Lager was born, prominently displaying the Pioneers' symbol, the North Star.
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In 1886, with the establishment of the Hokkaido government, the Sapporo Brewery Factory, as it was renamed, was sold to a private company, the Okura Trading Company (Kihachiro Okura). In December the following year, a group of entrepreneurs led by Eiichi Shibusawa and Soichiro Asano, bought the factory from the Okura Trading Company, and established Sapporo Beer Company, laying the foundation for major growth in beer brewing in Japan. In September 1887, the Japan Beer Brewery Company was established in Tokyo by a group of local entrepreneurs. After inviting a brewmaster from Germany, this company began selling Yebisu Beer in February 1890, marking another milestone in our history. Yebisu Beer has since garnered strong support as a beer born and bred in Tokyo.