History of Meiho Ham
Meiho-ham is using high-quality pork for you to feel the tastiness of pork when you chew it. It is made with Japan’s unique pressed ham manufacturing method, which hardens finely cut meat tightly and makes its chewy texture. This ham already has a history and story of more than 50 years.
In 1953, ham production began in a small factory at Oku Myogata Agricultural Cooperative Processing Factory for promoting dietary habits at mountain villages and promoting livestock farming. However, sales volume was initially sluggish. They narrowed down the products to press ham and focused on selling them as souvenirs in the neighboring Hachiman-cho. In 1973, Myogata Agricultural Cooperatives merged with Gujo AC and became one of its branches. The survival of Myogata Ham was endangered due to financial difficulties. However, people related to Meiho Village enthusiastically hoped to continue producing, saying, “Meiho Ham will surely become popular, I want to continue production!” In 1980, an NHK TV program, which was broadcast nationwide, featured Myogata Ham and gained a lot of fans all over the country. Due to the high economic growth and popularity of natural food, sales of Myogata Ham have increased steadily. It has become hard to buy for some time.
In 1988, ham manufacturing and sales company Myogata Specialty Processing Company was invested by consumer associations, business and industry associations, forestry associations, livestock associations, and villages in seven districts of Meiho Village at that time was established. The product name of ham has also changed to Meiho Ham, which Ho means treasure. Currently, the new head office factory was completed in 2018. Beginning with Meiho pressed ham, new products such as smoked ham, pork sausage, smoked sausage, parsley sausage, hamburger steak, and Frankfurt are developed.
Visiting Meiho Ham factory
Meiho Ham is made from only high-quality domestic pork thigh meat. They are using as few food additives, such as preservatives, food color, antioxidants, and extender as possible.
Among all the processes, the most time-consuming is dissecting. At the factory, all 7-8 kg meat blocks are disassembled to remove fat and veins one by one by hands. Every day, 2 tons (about 120 pigs) are handled by skillful technicians. Meat is cut into small pieces evenly and aged in a refrigerator controlled at a constant temperature for about a week. After aging, they add a secret seasoning that only a few people know about the composition, stir with a mixer, and fill each bag one by one. Ham is heat-treated after fitting into a metal mold called a retainer. By fitting it into this metal mold, Meiho Ham’s shape of unevenness will be created. The heated ham is cooled by water, removed from the mold, and inspected one by one with X-rays, measuring instruments, and visually. Finally, Meiho Ham is completed.
As the locals in Gujo, mainly Meiho, make most of the processes by hand, Meiho Ham is safe, secure, and delicious. You can join a factory tour and visit their new factory without making a reservation, so you can easily make a stop during your trip.
Meiho Ham Factory
|Address||33-2 Meiho Kera, Gujo-shi, Gifu-ken, 501-4303|
|Opening hours||08:30 – 15:30|
|Regular holiday||Saturdays, Sundays, public holidays and Year-end and New year holiday (May operate at Saturdays and public holidays)|
|Parking area||10 parking lots for ordinary, buses welcomed|
Meiho Ham Factory
Shops selling Meiho Ham and other products
Meiho Ham Factory
At the direct store of the factory, ham, sausage, and other products are for sale.
Meiho Ham direct store Meiho Meat
At the direct store at Roadside Station Meiho (Surusumi-no-sato Park), Meiho Frankfurt and fried Meiho Ham are available.
Roadside Station Meiho (Surusumi-no-sato Park)
A vending machine is selling Meiho Ham throughout the day.