Gloves created through local production for local consumption via “Co-creation”
Mizuno’s manufacturing is greatly supported by our connections to the local communities where our factories are located. The Shiso area of Hyogo Prefecture is home to Mizuno’s domestic glove production base of the Haga Factory (Mizuno Technics Corporation’s Haga Factory). The area is located along the Ibo River, which boasts abundant, beautiful flowing water, and is famous for its leather industry which has a long local tradition. Mizuno tackled the challenge of creating a new production model based on the theme of “local production for local consumption,” which is backed by important ties with the area and its people.
The newly created Shiso Cattle Leather Gloves are made at the Shiso area’s Haga Factory. These locally produced and consumed gloves are manufactured using leather from Japanese Wagyu cattle raised in the Shiso area.
Generally, baseball gloves manufactured in Japan use high-quality cowhide imported from overseas. However, the leather used in this project is from Shiso cattle, a brand of cattle carefully raised for food use at Kishimoto Farm in Shiso City, Hyogo Prefecture. The hide of the cows is a byproduct that would normally be discarded. However, it is now being processed into leather through the techniques and passion of the Shiso area craftspeople, and being used as a material to make gloves for the first time.
The livestock workers who raise the cattle are taking on the new challenge of not discarding Shiso cattle hides as usual and instead shipping them for use as a material for making gloves. The driving force behind this challenge was community ties. The initiator of this project is a glove craftsman from the Shiso area. The livestock workers in the Shiso area responded to his call, saying it was “because Mizuno has been involved in glove manufacturing for many years at its Haga Factory, which is also in the Shiso area.” “Co-creation with a local community” was realized in this way.
Shiso leather and other forms of Wagyu leather are hard and dense, and are usually used to make baseball mitts. In order to use such leather for gloves, a special manufacturing system has been put in place for the Shiso Cattle Leather Gloves, including additional processes to finish the leather for glove use, preparation of a new dedicated glove mold, and limited craftspeople involved in production.
The greatest characteristic of the Shiso Cattle Leather Gloves is their soft texture with a firm feel. They also feel light for their weight, creating the impression of gloves that can be moved quickly to where you need to catch the ball as fast as possible.
Mizuno feels that this initiative will not only add new value to Wagyu leather, but also lead to a new step forward in terms of “co-creation with a local community.” Mizuno hopes that these uniquely splendid Shiso Cattle Leather Gloves make you feel our sentiments for “co-creation with a local community” with the craftspeople and others in the Shiso area.
Mizuno will continue to work on co-creation with local communities and the challenge of new production models based on the theme of local production for local consumption, while aiming to contribute to the realization of a sustainable society through our glove products.
Shiso Cattle Leather Gloves for ultimate performance through the strength of local ties