SENDAI--Kirin Brewery Co. on Nov. 2 shipped its first batch of beer brewed in Sendai since its plant there was wrecked by the March 11 tsunami.
The product is garnering attention in the Tohoku region as "locally produced beer." As recovery efforts continue, demand is expected to grow for more locally made products.
The crates of beer, which uses hops harvested this summer in Tono, Iwate Prefecture, are being shipped from the Sendai brewery in Miyagino Ward to all six prefectures in the Tohoku region and part of Hokkaido.
Kirin said it has implemented thorough radiation checks of raw materials and finished products to allay consumer fears about radioactive contamination.
"Recovery efforts will continue for five to 10 years, so we expect strong demand (for beer products) in the Tohoku region," said Koichi Matsuzawa, president of Kirin Brewery.
Later this month, Kirin plans to sell "Ichiban Shibori" beer products bearing the phrase, "Genki! Tohoku" (Be vigorous! Tohoku), printed on the cans. The products will be sold only in the Tohoku region.
"The resumption of operations of the (Sendai) brewery, which symbolizes Tohoku, will be a good opportunity for Sendai to be vigorous again," said Miyagi Governor Yoshihiro Murai, referring to the plant that has roughly 200 employees.
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