Northwest Cideries Embark on Outbound Mission to Japan


Northwest Cideries Embark on Outbound Mission to Japan

March 13, 2024 – PORTLAND, Ore. 

The Oregon Department of Agriculture awarded Northwest Cider Association (NWCA), a specialty crop grant in October 2023, to support Oregon cidermakers’ exploration of the Japanese cider market. NWCA, a non-profit trade organization founded in 2010 with just 10 cideries, today represents nearly 100 regional cidery members across Oregon, Washington, Montana, Idaho and British Columbia.


The grant project involves 9 producers, who make cider from Oregon grown apples. Mission participants include cidery representatives from: 19 Acres, Avid, Bauman’s, Kristof Farms, Golden Row, La Familia, Portland Cider Co, Finnriver and Seattle Cider Co. These makers exported cider in fall 2023, entered their cider in the 2024 Japan Cider Cup and will travel abroad next month to explore the market first hand.


The outbound mission is organized in conjunction with the people’s choice cider competition, Japan Cider Cup, run by inCiderJapan. The competition organizer, Lee Reeve, is also serving as the Outbound Mission Manager for the delegation. Cidery representatives and staff from NWCA will visit Osaka and Nagano, meeting with Japanese cider and sake makers, orchardists and beverage buyers. Cidery representatives will learn first hand from peers, make meaningful connections, gather consumer feedback and host events with local venues in Japan. Supported by a specialty crop grant from the Oregon Department of Agriculture, the mission aims to increase cidermakers’ understanding of trade barriers and regulatory constraints to selling cider in the Japanese market.

The 10-day outbound mission culminates in greater Tokyo, with the Japan Cider Cup public festival happening April 13, 2024 in the city of Hachioji. Here, cidery delegates will be joined by Oregon Department of Agriculture’s International Trade Manager, Theresa Yoshioka and provided a market briefing from representatives from the Agricultural Trade Office in the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo before the event. 

This mission is timely, as the cider category continues to grow and attracts attention around the globe. currently tallies 2,230 total cider producers worldwide, with more than half of these makers producing within the US. Depending on where you are in the world, cider is called cidre, sidra, sidro, cyder and in Japan it’s called shiidoru. 


The Pacific Northwest, with an abundance of apples and a deeply rooted craft beverage culture, has earned respect for producing innovative, high quality, world-class ciders. Oregon alone is home to more than 70 cideries. In the Pacific Northwest, local demand for cider is more than ten times what it was a decade ago, and yet there is ample room for growth, as cider only accounts for about 7.5% of the overall regional beer market. With NW cider sales totaling over $120 million annually and Portlanders consuming more cider per capita than anywhere else in the world, this is a growing market segment not to be ignored. Cidery delegates will close out the mission with a final event at PDX Taproom in Shibuya, Tokyo, a craft beer bar with a distinctive Portland, Oregon theme.

Targeted outbound mission media and PR activities help to improve buyer and consumer awareness of Oregon cider as a premium product in both Japan and Oregon. Learnings from the mission will be shared through a variety of channels, including the NW Cider Symposium in March 2025. 

Follow along on the journey – @nwcider on Instagram and Facebook #nwciderinjapan

Funding for ‘Oregon craft cideries exploring and developing market access in Japan’ was made possible by a grant/cooperative agreement from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the USDA.


Media Contact:

For more information, press inquiries, or to schedule interviews, please contact:

Lota LaMontagne
(541) 543-0680


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