CheongKwanJang Product History

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Origins of

Following its designation as a government monopoly in 1899, Korean Red Ginseng was exported to various cities, including Shanghai, China. It was in 1963 when CheongKwanJang first attached its red sticker, marked with the symbol of Korean Red Ginseng, onto exports heading for countries like Hong Kong and Singapore. The emblem of CheongKwanJang, formerly reserved solely for use on Korean Red Ginseng root products, began to be used on Korean Red Ginseng exports to Japan starting in 1972. After primarily being used on international exports, the use of the emblem finally expanded to domestic products.

1908~1930 Before the establishment of the government
Before the establishment of the government

1908 ~ 1930 |Before the establishment of the government

In July 1908, during the Korean Empire, Samjungkwa built a Korean Red Ginseng Factory in Gaeseong, Gyeonggi-do and established it as its branch office. From that point on, efforts to develop Korean Red Ginseng products flourished.

The first Korean Red Ginseng product to be developed was named Korean Red Ginseng Extract, an extract made from the distillate produced during the manufacturing process of Korean Red Ginseng.

In 1912, made from the leaf and stem of Korean ginseng, Korean Red Ginseng Extracts for both external and internal uses were developed as treatments for wounds. In 1951, Korean Red Ginseng Extract for bathing was released. Korean Red Ginseng Extract Powder was launched in 1917, followed by Korean Red Ginseng Extract in 1930.

  • KRG Products -1910
  • Ginseng distillation -1920
  • White pipe packaging -


The export of Korean Red Ginseng gained an impetus in the early 1970s. That was when new products were being designed to suit the diverse tastes of customers. These products included Korean Red Ginseng Tea (1972,) a mild-flavored product developed for all to enjoy; Korean Red Ginseng Tablets (1975,) made into round tablets that were easier to consume than Korean Red Ginseng powder; and Korean Red Ginseng Extract Powder Capsules (1976,) Korean red ginseng powder in capsule form, to name a few. Each of the products above has been exported to overseas markets as a means to acquire foreign currencies.

  • KRG Products -1970


Since the 1980s when Korean Red Ginseng Extract Pill (1982) for medicinal uses was developed for the Japanese market, easy-to-drink Korean red ginseng beverages were launched with the Asian Games and Seoul Olympics approaching. During the same period, Korean Red Ginseng Drink (1987,) the representative Korean Red Ginseng drink, was developed and has been earning the love of consumers for nearly the past 30 years. Building on these successes, CheongKwanJang won the grand prize in the Korea Prestige Brand Awards in May 2006.

  • Hong Sam Won -1987
  • Tea -
  • Korea ginseng powder -
  • KRG Sports -1982


Since KT&G was established, the Korean Red Ginseng division has been trapped in a financial deficit. Nevertheless, we made endless efforts to continue our Korean red ginseng business, holding onto our mission to protect our country’s heritage as the home to Korean Ginseng.

Amidst these difficult times, the 1990s was when we began to explore new opportunities in product development, in order to diversify our Korean Red Ginseng product lines and turn the situation around.

As the Asian Financial Crisis hit Korea and the global economy hard, the Korean red ginseng industry was finally divided as a separate company. However, it was also the period when Korean Red Ginseng Tonic, Extract Capsule, Honeyed Slices, Hwalsam 28D and many other products, which have yet to lose popularity amongst consumers, were developed, laying a strong foundation for the further expansion of Korean Red Ginseng products.

  • KRG Extract Capsule -1990
  • KRG Vital Tonic -
  • Hwalsam 28D -


KGC has consolidated our position as a leader in the Korean Red Ginseng industry by conducting scientific studies on the efficacy of our products and developing new products in response to customer needs.

Also, we have expanded our product lineups to encompass people from all walks of life, including not only middle-aged people but also growing teenagers – I-Pass (2001) was launched as a boost for students; Korean Red Ginseng Kid Tonic (2004) grew staggeringly popular, becoming one of the top health foods for children; and Jinspa (2006) was created as a Korean Red Ginseng beauty soap. By researching the effectiveness of mixed herbal remedies and developing a broad range of products to complement that research, we have paved our way for achieving the status of a global general health & wellness brand.

  • Kid Tonic -2000
  • Red Ginseng Vita -