Zetto Can/Bottle Opener
Melamine-Coated Steel, Nickel-Plated Steel
Made in Tsubamesanjo, Japan
L6.8 x W4 x H2.5cm
This Hyotan(gourd)-shaped can opener has been manufactured and packaged by the Prince Kogyo company in the exact same way for the last 65 years, and was invented by the current president’s grandfather, Zenkichi.
Its retro-cute design has become a classic souvenir from the town of Tsubamesanjo in the Niigata Prefecture, where it is manufactured. Made from melamine-coated steel with a hardened carbon steel blade, it comes available in two colours, red or green. You can also use this can opener as a bottle opener, making it a highly practical item to keep in your kitchen, or take with you on picnics and camping trips.
Tsubamesanjo, Niigata Prefecture is a town famous for its metal processing and technological evolution. With the history and traditions of such manufacturing still preserved by craftsmen in this area, new advanced industrial technology continues to develop, making Tsubamesanjo homewares ideal products for the modern home, while still living within tradition.
Tsubame and Sanjo, often referred to as “mid-prefecture,” are two cities located almost in the center of Niigata Prefecture. Tsubame-Sanjo is famous for its metal processing, but it is also a region rich in nature – thanks to the Shinano river, Japan’s longest, that runs through the region – and is known as a production center for delicious rice and fruits. Its fertile land has long contributed to a harvest of agricultural products and prosperity.
The tradition of metal fabrication in these two towns dates back over 400 years to the Edo period (1603-1867), with the manufacturing of metal nails marking a turning point in Japan’s industrial revolution. Since then, Tsubame-Sanjo has become one of the world’s leading technological zones, continuously developing new ways to improve and evolve industrial technologies to meet new challenges amid changing times. But time-honoured techniques of the past are not forgotten. Some traditional industries, such as Tsuiki copperware and forging, are still passed down in an unbroken line from generation to generation, while simultaneously embracing present-day lifestyles with contemporary metal products and tools that no modern household can do without. In this way, the manufacturing tradition of Tsubame-Sanjo continues to evolve.
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