Policies and Our Approach
Basic Policy on Social Activities
Since first opening its doors, the Suntory Group has been involved in community contribution, arts, culture, sports and environmental activities based on the spirit of Giving back to Society. The social activities of the Suntory Group contribute to sustainable growth of its businesses while solving issues in local communities. We have established the Suntory Group’s Basic Policy on Social Activities and aim to improve the value of our corporate brand across the globe through promoting activities unique to Suntory with the Group companies.
The Suntory Group is involved in a variety of cultural contribution activities such as operating the Suntory Museum of Art, Suntory Hall and other activities that contribute to the development of a rich culture and lifestyle.
In addition, we also support social science and humanities academic research and the research activities of the Suntory Foundation for Life Sciences. Through these activities we aim to foster international human resources capable of leading the next generation.
Promoting Arts, Culture and Academics
Suntory Foundation for the Arts
Suntory Museum of Art opened in 1961 and Torii Music Foundation was established in 1969 as a 70th anniversary commemoration of the founding of Suntory (Torii Music Foundation changed to Suntory Music Foundation in 1978). In 2009, the Suntory Foundation for the Arts was established commemorating the 110th anniversary of the company, uniting and transforming these two activities which have been engaged in the field of the arts for nearly half a century into a new form suitable for the 21st century.
Suntory Museum of Art -- Art revised, beauty revealed
Opened in 1961 with the basic philosophy of “Art in Life,” the Suntory Museum of Art has hosted special exhibitions and expanded its collection, mainly consisting of Japanese art pieces. In March 2007, the museum was moved to Tokyo Midtown in Roppongi. Under the theme of "Art revised, beauty revealed,” the museum has held a variety of special exhibitions with approximately 3,000 items from its collection, including one National Treasure and 15 Important Cultural Properties, and continues its activities to pass on the aesthetic values that lie at the heart of Japanese people to future generations. The museum, designed around the theme of “urban living room” by architect Kengo Kuma, features a store, a café, a tea ceremony room and a hall that features various programs, among others.
Suntory Hall — In pursuit of the world’s most beautiful sound
The Suntory Hall opened in 1986 as Tokyo’s first dedicated concert hall. Performances by leading musicians from Japan and overseas are performed in two halls, Main Hall with a vineyard style, praised as "a jewel box of sound" by world-renowned conductor Herbert von Karajan, and Blue Rose (Small Hall) which gives the space a warm sound and atmosphere and the audience can feel close to the performers. Every year, Suntory Hall holds approximately 600 events by world’s top artists from home and abroad, and welcomes approximately 600,000 visitors. Even during pandemic of Covid-19, Suntory Hall strived to have concerts enhancing the precautious measures for infectious diseases based on the idea of enriching peoples’ lives through music. In September 2021, visitors to Suntory Hall hit 20 million since its opening. In 2021, we opened the “Digital Suntory Hall,” allowing visitors from all over the world to enjoy Suntory Hall's facilities and concerts beyond distance and time.
Suntory Hall and Suntory Museum of Art Purchase 100% Renewable Electricity
From April 2022, the Suntory Group purchases 100% renewable electricity for all 30 directly owned manufacturing sites and R&D facilities in Japan. Suntory Hall and Suntory Museum of Art have also switched to purchasing 100% of their electricity from renewable energy sources. Through these efforts, the two facilities have been able to reduce CO2 emissions by approximately 800 tons per year compared to the past. We believe that both "the most beautiful echoes in the world" and "urban living room" can be realized by placing importance on harmony with nature as well as with people and society.
Music Division — Innovative Activities to Promote Music
We are involved in a variety of projects designed to promote Western music in Japan, including awarding the Suntory Music Award to individuals and organizations that have made outstanding achievements in the field of music as well as the Keizo Saji Prize awarded for outstanding challenging performances and the Yasushi Akutagawa Suntory Award for Music Composition given to up-and-coming Japanese composers with superior works. We also introduce "Japanese Contemporary Compositions" on our website. Since 2014, Suntory has also been aiming to conserve excellent stringed instrument artifacts which are cultural heritage assets as well as cultivate new musicians through lending activities. The Suntory Foundation for the Arts lends its instruments to junior high and senior high school students and has begun a new program to lend instruments to up-and-coming musicians.
Vienna Philharmonic & Suntory Music Aid Fund
Together with Suntory Holdings Ltd., the Suntory Foundation for the Arts engages in Vienna Philharmonic & Suntory Music Aid Fund activities for the purpose of invigorating disaster afflicted areas as well as the rest of Japan.
We are expanding many of these activities from the Music Aid Award that issues grants to music activities provided together with the Vienna Philharmonic to Concerts for Children in disaster-affected areas and mentoring of junior orchestras and musical remembrances.
Suntory Foundation was established in 1979 in celebration of Suntory’s 80th anniversary. Aiming to deepen international and interdisciplinary exploration of society and culture, we will support and discover of talented human resources across a wide range of fields, and support original and adventurous research, and, contribute to the dramatic development of cultural exchange between the world and Japan.
Our initiatives as a Humanities and Social Sciences Promotion Project effort include research assistance and investigative research in the fields of the humanities and social science, awarding of the Suntory Prize for Social Sciences and Humanities, and overseas publishing support. Community Culture Promotion Project efforts include awarding the Suntory Prize for Community Cultural Activities and support for regional cultural activities.
In recent years, the Foundation has been actively working to provide support to young researchers, and carrying out initiatives including providing support those who will lead the future of society, and working to bridge the gap between researchers and society by providing opportunities for exchange between the worlds of academism and journalism.
Suntory Foundation For Life Sciences
Preceded by the Institute of Food Chemistry which was established in 1946 to improve the health and nutrition of the Japanese people, the name was changed to Suntory Institute for Bioorganic Research (SUNBOR) in 1979 and Suntory Foundation for Life Sciences in 2011. The Foundation promotes research and disseminating academics of bioorganic science, which is a fusion of life science and organic chemistry. It has produced many university professors and other researchers that play active roles on the frontline.
We engage in research activities for unveiling the mechanisms of life emphasizing molecules using the keywords "metabolism," "biomembrane," and "signalling" by positioning our own research into structural biology, organic chemistry, and molecular biology as points of integration for dissimilar fields. Collabolative research with research institutions such as universities is also promoted. It also operates analysis center to aid research by universities. SUNBOR GRANT for young researchers, SUNBOR SCHOLARSHIP for graduate students, aiding academic meetings, system of postdoctoral fellow, educational support for universities, and other activities to train researchers are also operated.
The discovery of enzyme gene for biosynthesis of Sesamolin and Sesaminol from Sesamin, antioxidant components of sesame, has been published for the first time in the world. Also, the gene controlling the contour shape of leaves and the blue formation mechanism created through interaction between flower pigment and flavonoid glycoside are also now known. These and many other research results are published in prominent academic papers. In addition, joint researchers and front-line researchers are invited to hold debriefing sessions annually.
SunRiSE （Suntory Rising Stars Encouragement Program in Life Sciences）
"SunRiSE " has been established to support the life science researchers who will lead Japan's basic research in the future and take on great challenges.
In FY2020, 10 young researchers (SunRiSE Fellows) were selected from among nearly 500 applicants, and the 5-year program started in April 2021. In FY2022, a research exchange meeting was held to deepen exchanges among the fellows, and a research discussion meeting was held to discuss the year's research progress with the participation of program steering committee members.
Suntory Presents Beethoven’s 9th with a Cast of 10,000 – Spreading the Joy of Singing Together
Suntory Presents Beethoven’s 9th with a Cast of 10,000 started as a commemorative event of the opening of the Osaka-jo Hall in 1983 which was held for the 40th time in 2022.
The Suntory Group has been a co-sponsor from the first time, the concert has become a seasonal event in December.
The wide ranging event went beyond the borders of the region and surpassed generations with the participation of 10,000 people of all ages and nationalities with the expansion of the lesson venue as an opportunity to experience the joy of singing and the excellence of classical music.
In 2011 to 2013, Tohoku venue, which was linked live with the Osaka-jo Hall, was also set as a part of an activity to support the recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake. In 2014, 150 people from Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures were invited to the Osaka-jo Hall.
From 2017, in addition to television broadcasts, we have been providing LINE LIVE, a live broadcast for reaching more viewers. We also undertook a new challenge in 2020 by inviting people from throughout the country to participate by posting singing videos, in 2022, as 40th anniversary concert, over 10,000 songs ware collected from the Osaka-jo Hall, remote choir all over Japan, and posting singing videos from many countries.