The Ajinomoto Group story began in 1908 when scientist Dr. Kikunae Ikeda discovered that the amino acid found in traditional Japanese seaweed soup (also called dashi), L-glutamic acid, is the source of umami – the savory, fifth taste found in many foods. This discovery led to the founding of Ajinomoto Co. and the introduction of the world’s first umami seasoning, monosodium glutamate. The Ajinomoto Group continued to pioneer amino acid research and create solutions supporting numerous industries to help people eat well and live well. Decades later, Ajinomoto Health & Nutrition was established to bring these amino acid-based solutions to people in North America. Through a focus on research and product development and a dedication to human health, our company has become a trusted supplier of foods, medical foods, food ingredients, amino acids and supplements.
Since its founding in 1908, the Ajinomoto Group continues to action the corporate message of "Eat Well, Live Well" by exploring the potential of amino acids in every aspect of life. We have highlighted key points in our company's 110-year history here, but for more information on the full Ajinomoto Group company timeline, visit here.