Deshima Netherlands Awards 2017 for Kikkoman and Mitsubishi Corporation Life Sciences

6th edition of biennial Deshima Awards for successful Japanese investors in the Netherlands

During the DUJAT December Dinner, Deshima Netherlands Awards 2017 were presented to Kikkoman Foods Europe (well-established) and MCLS Europe (newcomer).

On Thursday evening 14 December 2017, Mr. Jeroen Nijland, Commissioner Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA), presented the Deshima Netherlands Awards 2017.  During the annual DUJAT December Dinner, the Award in the category ‘well-established’ was presented to Kikkoman Foods Europe and in the category ‘newcomer’ to Mitsubishi Corporation Life Sciences (MCLS Europe).

ASICS, Chugoku Marine Paints, Nippon Express and Shimano were also nominated in the category ‘well-established’, in addition to Kikkoman. In the category ‘newcomer’ Eurus Energy and Macromill/Metrixlab made up the list of nominations together with MCLS Europe.

Award for well-established Kikkoman

Kikkoman Foods Europe celebrated its 20th anniversary in the Netherlands this year. In 1997 the company opened its European production plant in Hoogezand-Sappemeer, in the northern part of the country. Kikkoman also runs a small lab in Wageningen to be close to the food knowledge center in the Netherlands.

The jury report mentioned this iconic company shows a long-term commitment to economic contribution in our country, and adds to further development of our knowledge infrastructure (Wageningen University & Research). In addition, Kikkoman makes significant contributions to the local environment, the art world, and to cultural exchange between Europe and Asia. Kikkoman made financial contributions to the Rembrandt House and the National Green Fund, and is also the main sponsor of a water purification windmill at the Zuidlaardermeer in the province of Groningen. For its 15th anniversary in 2012, Kikkoman offered a chair to the University of Leiden and for its 20th anniversary, it made a momentous contribution towards the restoration of two stolen Van Gogh paintings that were recovered earlier in 2017.

Award for newcomer MCLS Europe

MCLS Europe is a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation Life Sciences Ltd. in Tokyo, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Mitsubishi Corporation. It was established in Amstelveen in 2015 with European marketing & sales operations as well as research & development activities. MCLS Europe products include food ingredients such as yeast extracts and other savory ingredients, sweeteners like maltitol and hydrocolloids like carrageenan, which are marketed throughout Europe.

The jury report mentioned that MCLS Europe is aiming for healthier and tastier food so people can live better lives. Current food trends are here to stay and MCLS offers solutions for e.g. reduction of salt, sugar and E-numbers, as well as solutions for convenience and affordability.

MCLS Europe participates in Food Valley NL, underscoring its wish to really be part of the food ecosystem in the Netherlands and its commitment to establishing new partnerships.

Deshima Netherlands Awards

© Twycer /

In 2007, as a token of appreciation to the Japanese business community in the Netherlands, Dutch-Japanese Trade Federation DUJAT and the NFIA introduced the biennial Deshima Netherlands Awards for two outstanding Japanese companies in the Netherlands. One award is presented to a well-established Japanese company, and the other to a Japanese company that has recently invested in the Netherlands. Based upon the nominations by the regional partners of the Invest in Holland network, a competent jury selects two winning companies. The winning companies are chosen based on criteria related to the contribution to the economy, society and their role within the Japan-Netherlands relations.

Currently over 800 entities of over 450 Japanese companies are registered at the Dutch Chamber of Commerce. They employ over 40,000 people directly and make the Netherlands the 3rd favorite home for Japanese companies in Europe, behind Germany and the UK.

For the 2017 Awards, the jury was chaired by Mr. Jeroen Nijland, Commissioner NFIA. He was assisted by Mr. Geert Jan Mantel, Chairman of DUJAT, and Mr. Kenji Saito, Chairman of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce (JCC).

Previous winners of the Well-Established Awards:

  • FUJIFILM Europe (2007)
  • Teijin Group in the Netherlands (2009)
  • Astellas Pharma (2011)
  • Canon (2013)
  • Omron (2015)

Previous winners of the Newcomer Awards:

  • Hitachi Construction Machinery (2007)
  • Sekisui S-Lec (2009)
  • Menicon (2011)
  • Kobelco Construction Machinery Europe (2013)
  • Omori-Selo (2015)


15 December 2017