The history of OLFA began during World War II, when founder Yoshio Okada sought a solution to blades constantly losing their edge and becoming dull. One day he was thinking about how craftsmen in the old days use to cut materials with the edge of glass pieces, when an America soldier gave him a chocolate bar. An idea hit him: a blade that can be snapped off like a chocolate bar! So he thought carefully about what would be the best blade size and angle of the segments and started to make a prototype. He spent many nights undergoing many trials and errors, and in 1956 he created the worlds first snap-off knife.
Yoshio used all his money to make 3000 hand-made knives, and with their success the popularity of the item started to sharply rise. Over the years sales increased, and in 1967, Yoshio decided that it was time to put a name to his original invention. His brither, Saburo, came up with the idea of "OLHA", which means 'breaking a blade' in Japanese, but with visions of the product being sold worldwide, Yoshio was worried that some languages can't pronounce the letter 'H'. So they went with 'F' instead, and 'OLFA' was born.