Sakamoto Lime Co., Ltd.
We developed water-repellent lime desiccants with reduced alkalinity
We manufacture and sell lime desiccants for which we retain the largest market share in Japan. Our “Desiccant IC” is a water-repellent lime desiccant which does not emit heat even on contact with water and is made of specially processed lime. We successfully suppressed the strong alkalinity inherent to lime, ensuring safety of customers by protecting them from burns which can happen after accidental ingestion of the product.
[Product description] Lime desiccants had a problem of heat generation on contact with water. Socially vulnerable people who are aged 5 and under or 65 and up are the main victims of accidents where they get burnt after accidental ingestion of lime desiccants used for laver or rice crackers. Indications such as “Dangerous! Do not eat!” do not work with them. This is why we developed “Desiccant IC,” a safe lime desiccant which causes no burns even when eaten accidently. It is made of specially processed lime which retains the advantages of the substance but possesses additional properties such as water-repellency, which prevents generation of heat even if the product gets in contact with water. Besides, the product is not subject to the provisions on corrosive materials of aviation laws as we successfully suppressed the strong alkalinity inherent to lime. [Market share/Ranking] Domestic market share of lime desiccants: 16% (top-ranked in the industry) [Authorization/Certification] ISO 9001 (the main plant [September 12, 2001] and the Kanto plant [April 23, 2012]) [Intellectual property] Desiccant raw material and its manufacturing method (Patent No. 4051399) and two other patents [Major facilities and equipment] High-speed filling machine (16 units), vertical filling machine (6 units), powder filling machine (1 unit)
[Company strength] We are the pioneer who has launched the manufacturing of lime desiccants ahead of others in the industry and maintaining the largest market share in Japan. We develop and carry in-house lime products for various applications not only for industrial uses but also for daily necessities. We are a research and development oriented enterprise and proactive in joint research with universities and other companies, always developing new application fields of lime. [Business description] We used to engage in limestone mining at the time of founding and today we manufacture and sell lime products. Specifically, we launched the manufacturing of lime desiccants 50 years ago and they still make up a half of our sales. We have been trying to add higher values to lime products, aiming at shifting from business by ton (quantity) to gram (quality). In addition, we use different types of lime with distinct properties and develop products suitable for respective intended uses. [Industry] Manufacturing of lime products [Strength of products/technologies] “Desiccant IC” is the world’s first safe and secure lime desiccant which does not emit heat any higher than 50℃. Since early times, lime desiccants have been enclosed in packages of laver and rice crackers as ideal desiccative agents for their high hygroscopic properties and low prices. We solved the issue of quick heat generation of lime caused when it rapidly absorbs water (up to 300℃ within a minute) after nearly 20 years of research and development while keeping its advantages intact. We believe it is our mission as the pioneer of lime desiccants to “provide absolutely safe products.” [Representative's message] Lime desiccants have been used in the food industry (the laver industry, in particular) up to present for their low prices and the remarkable desiccant properties of quicklime. They have never been replaced by other desiccants despite occasional occurrence of accidents due to heating and other causes. Thus, people tolerate burns caused by accidental ingestion given the present circumstances. This is why we are convinced that “Desiccant IC,” a safe lime desiccant using non-heat generating lime which we have developed, is indispensable to consumers. [Company structure for market development/overseas expansion] We sincerely cope with new clients under the direction of the president while making regular reports to him. Responsible workers at the planning and development unit and the manufacturing department respond to technical consultations. We carry out data collection and analysis as necessary with our well-established system which ensures safe business of our clients. [Market share/Ranking] Ranking 1st in the domestic market share of lime desiccants: 16% (top-ranked in the industry) [Awards and media coverage] [Awards] The Golden Prize, the Kids Design Award (2008); selected as one of the 300 of Japan's Vibrant Monozukuri (Manufacturing) SMEs (2009); received the Product Safety Measures Excellent Company Commendation （2009）; selected for Kyusyu Chiho Hatsumei (Kyushu Local Invention) (2010); the Kumamoto Prefecture Industrial Grand Prize (2010); the 4th Monozukuri (Manufacturing) Nippon Grand Award (2012) [Media] Covered by “World Business Satellite,” TV Tokyo (aired on August 3, 2009) and many others including local media in Kyushu [Authorization/Certification] ISO 9001, accreditation under the New Partnerships (2012), approved as a Leading Ikusei Kigyou (Growing Enterprise) by Kumamoto Prefecture (2010) [Joint research and development] Kumamoto University (“Development of Non-Heat Generating Quicklime” [2006 to 2012] and others); Kumamoto National College of Technology; Tokyo National College of Technology; Kumamoto Prefectural Industrial Technology Center [Factory (domestic)] Head office factory (Kumamoto pref.), Kanto branch factory (Ibaraki pref.) [Other sites] Kumamoto head office factory, Kanto branch, Hiroshima branch [Transaction form] Sale of products and materials, OEM contracts, etc. [Transaction terms] Based on our terms and conditions. [Main Clients / Business History (domestic)] Nico-Nico Nori Inc. (for 40 years), Ohmoriya (for 40 years), Taiyo Shokuhin (for 40 years), Urashima Nori Co. Ltd (2012-to the present), Iwatsuka Confectionery Co. Ltd (2011-to the present), Morita Arare (for 40 years) and others [Main Clients / Business History (overseas)] Currently in business negotiations with a Taiwanese manufacturer [Exhibition History/Information] SME Expo Sougouten 2006; Kumamoto Industrial Business Fair 2012; Industry-Academia-Government Collaboration Symposium 2012; Kumamoto University Korea Forum 2006; Kumamoto University Indonesia Forum 2008; Kumamoto Industrial Business Fair 2014 (planned); SME Expo Sougouten 2014 (planned); Taipei Food Exhibition 2014 (planned); Shanghai Food Exhibition 2014 (planned); Paris Food Exhibition 2014 (planned)
- Kyushu Head Office