Posted by Ramon Elzinga on


Tokyo, Japan

Company Overview

Hitachi, Ltd., established in Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan, is a multinational conglomerate firm. Before DKB and Fuji Bank (the principal Fuyo Group company) amalgamated into the Mizuho Financial Group. It was part of the Nissan zaibatsu and later DKB Group and Fuyo Group of enterprises. Hitachi's business span from IT, including AI, the Internet of Things, and big data, to infrastructure by 2020.

Hitachi, Ltd. is a Japanese corporation that makes communications and electronic equipment, heavy electrical and industrial gear, and consumer electronics. The company's varied product line is impressive, from nuclear power systems to household appliances, up to kitchenware. Not to mention that Hitachi has companies in the wire & cable, metal, and chemical industries.


This company initially focused on producing heavy electrical equipment and industrial machinery. Hitachi made Japan's first large-scale direct-current locomotives and motors, generators, pumps, electrical cables, and transformers (1924). Hitachi benefited from a strategic government investment in the 1930s that allowed the company to diversify into metallurgy and communications equipment.

Steels they make

Hitachi produces various steel grades that are most commonly used in kitchen knives. Hitachi knife steel is prominent for its high toughness with hardness, superior cutting quality, and resistance to breaking, bending, and chipping. Here are some of Hitachi's steel grades to give you an overview.

  • Yellow steel is pure steel with less sulfur and phosphorus contents. With two available grades, yellow 2 and yellow 3. This steel is most commonly used in a range of kitchen knives and cutlery with 58-61 Rockwell Hardness (HRC)
  • SK Steel includes sk5, sk4, and sk3. It is the lower mid-range Japanese steel with an HRC of 65. This steel grade from Hitachi has the lowest carbon content (0,9%), making it a tough material with the lowest hardness. Hence, this material has 0,25% Nickel, 0,50%,  0,35 % Silicon, 0,25% Copper, 0,03% Phosphorus, and 0,03% Sulfur. This is the least expensive steel grade from the brand
  • White Steel includes white #3, white #2, and white #1. These steel grades are known to be Shirogami knife grade is high-end steel for Japanese Knives with HRC that ranges from 60-65. This steel is scarce and expensive; thus, its cutting edge and retention is impecccable.
  • Blue steel includes Blue #2, Blue #3, and Super Blue. Blue steel is white steel with added chromium and tungsten. Super Blue grade is considered Japanese Premium carbon steel with HRC of 63. This is best for cutting vegetables, fruits, and meat with maximum toughness and wearability, although at such a high HRC, the metal can be brittle.

Knife Makers who use them

Many Kitchen Knife companies used Hitachi Steel knives and brands such as Sakai Yamazaki knives with their Single-edged Kasumi Yellow Steel knife, Toshu knives, Gyuto Super Blue Steel Chef knife, and Sakai Takayuki White Kurouchi.

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