Japan Sake and Shochu Makers Association | JSS


The Basic Guide How to Read Shochu Bottle Labels

How to Read Shochu Bottle Labels

The label on a shochu bottle lists the basic information about the product. In Japan, shochu bottle labels must include 7 items required by law and industry. Some labels also include additional information about the product highlighting its character.
Below is a list of items found on shochu labels in Japan. However, keep in mind that the information required on product labels, particularly alcohol, differs from country to country.

Product Name

The commercial name of the product.

Producer Information

Name of the producer and the address of the production site.


In Japan, shochu usually comes in 720ml, 900ml, or 1800ml bottles. In addition, awamori often has 360ml and 600ml bottle options as well.

Liquor Category

Such as “Honkaku Shochu” or “Awamori.”

Alcohol Content

In most cases, shochu contains 25% of alcohol, but it ranges from 20% to 35%.


Primarily, this is a warning to prevent underage drinking. In Japan, the warning usually reads “Drinking by those aged under 20 is prohibited by law.”


List of ingredients from most to least in volume or weight.

Geographical Identification /
Regional Trademark

The product can indicate a GI or a regional trademark if it fulfills the requirements.

Special Ingredients or

The label can indicate special ingredients and production methods to showcase certain characteristics of the product. This includes a special ingredient variety, ingredients harvested in a specific region, atmospheric or vacuum distillation, aging, etc.

Indication of Organic Product

The product can indicate its status as an organic product if it uses organic ingredients and fulfills the required production method.


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