What are Amino Acids? It’s Simple!



Ajinomoto Group and Amino Acids

A Long History of Amino Acid Research

Ajinomoto Group—A Leader in Amino Acid Research for over a Century

Kikunae Ikeda
Professor Kikunae Ikeda discovered in 1908 that the taste of kombu dashi (stock made from kelp) comes from glutamate (an amino acid). His discovery launched the Ajinomoto Group that began commercially selling the seasoning AJI-NO-MOTO® made from glutamate in 1909. The newly discovered taste was named "umami" and became recognized throughout the world as the fifth basic taste after sweet, salty, sour and bitter.
Amino acids keep us alive and thriving. We continue to find new ways for amino acids to help us. The Ajinomoto Group has learned so much about amino acids over the past 100 years and aims to expand their use in many fields such as medicine, food seasonings and cosmetics.