Here are the answers to commonly asked questions about Kikkoman products. If you can't find the answer to your question here, please click here to contact us.
For our sauces, the Best By Date is printed on the neck of the glass bottle or the bottle cap. Our seasoning mixes and gold-colored packaged soup mixes have a date embossed on the side of the packets or printed across the top of the package back. Please click here to view some examples.
Our Best By Date is written as Day, Month and Year. For example, a printed Best By Date of 10MAR16 would indicate the unopened product should be used before March 10, 2016 for the best quality.
Kikkoman started to print Best By Dates on retail supermarket items in the year 2008. For containers larger than 1.25-quart, they may still have a production code printed on the container's neck instead.
The code is the top (or first set) of printed numbers and letters. The three-digit number before the letters refers to the Day-of-the-Year (like the Ordinal Date or Julian Day Calendar), followed by letters that represent the year. Products manufactured in 2015 will have the letters "AK." The letters "AF" were used for 2014, "AC" for 2013, "AB" for 2012, and "AA" for 2011. If your Kikkoman product has any other letters, then the product was made over five years ago.
For unopened products in plastic bottles, the soy sauce should be used within two years of its production date code, and, the teriyaki marinade & sauce and other Asian sauces should be used within 18 months.
The Japanese-style soup mixes will maintain their peak quality for one year after their production date. For the Chinese-style egg flower soup mixes, it is best to use them within 18 months of its manufacturing date.
A four-digit production date code (Year-Month-Day) is printed at the bottom of the package back. The code reflects the date the mix was made. The first number refers to the last digit of the year. The second number or letter* stands for the month with the last two digits representing the day of the month. For example, a package has "4216" as the code. The "4" refers to 2014 and the "2" is for the second month of the year so it was produced on February 16, 2014.
*Please note the letter "O" is used for the month of October and "Y" represents November and "Z" is for December.
For the best quality, we recommend using the sauces within one month of opening.
Once opened, the soy sauce will start to lose its freshness and the flavor will begin to change. By refrigerating the sauce, the flavor and quality will remain at their peak for a longer period. As long as no water or other ingredients have been added to the soy sauce, it would not spoil if it had not been refrigerated.
The flavor of our other sauces will decline much quicker than our soy sauce. So they should be refrigerated after opening to preserve their quality.
To preserve the quality and freshness of Kikkoman Rice Vinegar and Seasoned Rice Vinegar longer, we suggest refrigerating them after opening as well.
Yes. Kikkoman produces a Gluten-Free Soy Sauce. Brewed in Singapore, this product is made of water, soybeans, rice and salt. It has the same flavor-enhancing qualities and premium flavor as our regular soy sauce, but with slightly more sweetness. This product is certified as gluten-free (less than 10ppm) by the Gluten Free Certification Organization (GFCO).
We also have a Gluten-Free Teriyaki Marinade & Sauce, which is made with our Gluten-Free Soy Sauce and contains no wheat. This sauce meets the FDA’s proposed guidelines for a gluten-free declaration (less than 20ppm). To find stores that carry these products, please try our Product Locator.
Kikkoman Soy Sauces contain greater than 2% alcohol by volume. The alcohol is not added, but is a result of the fermentation process. Like wine or beer, our soy sauces are brewed and they are made from wheat, soybeans, salt and water. During fermentation, the wheat starches are broken down to sugars and part of the sugar is changed into alcohol.
Kikkoman Teriyaki Sauces have a small amount of alcohol since they are all made with traditionally brewed Kikkoman Soy Sauce. Kikkoman Soy Sauce is a fermented product like beer and is made from wheat, soybeans, salt and water. During the fermentation process, the wheat starches are broken down to sugars and part of the sugar is changed into alcohol. Also, some of our teriyaki sauces have wine or mirin (rice wine) as an ingredient.
The following Kikkoman products are certified Kosher by the Orthodox Union:
Please click here for a chart of Kikkoman products containing sesame, corn, mustard and any of the top eight allergens in Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA).
The all-purpose Kikkoman Soy Sauce and the Kikkoman Less Sodium Soy Sauce are brewed at the Kikkoman Foods, Inc. plant in Walworth, WI where there are no peanuts or tree nuts ingredients. Please check the back of your label to see where the product was made.
Selected Kikkoman specialty products, such as Steak Sauce, Marinade Mix for Meat, Teriyaki Takumi Collection Sauces and Seasoning Mixes, are sold through our Online Store. Please click here to find out more about this service.