ナナイの大冒険

Welcome to my blog!

Why are Japanese people "moving away from Japanese sweets" at an accelerating pace?

2022/05/20
スーパー/自然有機食品ニュース
Wagashi delicious Japanese sweets accelerating pace
Why are Japanese people "moving away from Japanese sweets" at an accelerating pace?

This article is a compilation of reviews from readers about an article published in Toyo Keizai magazine on May 20, 2022 by a female reporter named Ako Mari. Title: Even teenagers who do not know "Uiro," "Ochigans," and "Nerikiri" are paying attention to the closure of Kinokuniya, and five reasons why Japanese people are accelerating their "separation from Japanese sweets. Many people responded with criticism. Although the article is not an excellent one, we found that this reader's review is a better outlook for the Japanese confectionery industry in the future.

花見男子

These are the times ahead. If you publish biased ideological thoughts, your reputation as a reporter will be ruined. She must have realized that even for a layman, writing an article about Japanese confectionery, which has been an established part of Japanese culture for many years, without much historical background, would lead to this kind of situation. It may have been a good lesson for her.

ひなまつりお菓子①

1 The middle-aged and elderly, who are the main group of consumers, have stopped eating sweets, and I think this is due in no small part to health-consciousness.
While it is true that anko (red bean paste) is rich in dietary fiber, there are many wagashi in general that have surprisingly low sugar content, and some are difficult to understand due to the 100g labeling of nutritional ingredients. In addition, the number of people who shun sugar is increasing, and even Japanese confectioneries are now being carefully screened.
On the other hand, the lack of animal ingredients may make it easier to develop organic and vegan products. The key is how to step out of the traditional shell and meet the needs of today. I believe that wagashi has the potential to overcome this challenge.

2 Wagashi is high in sugar, so naturally older people will put up with ordinary sweets, while younger people will buy only a little because the amount of sweets is small and the price is high. Overall, I think the frequency of buying sweets is decreasing. If that is the case, buying sweet buns will make them feel fuller. I think this is affecting the Japanese confectionery industry. In fact, the price of wagashi does not seem to be enough to satisfy consumers.

3 I love both Japanese and Western sweets and look forward to having them with coffee after dinner every day.
I am over 40 years old, and I always check the sugar content (labeled carbohydrates minus fiber) and try to keep it under 25 grams for my figure and health, but Japanese sweets are extremely high in sugar. I told a Japanese sweets shop I know that I would buy low-sugar Japanese sweets if they had them, but they were not interested at all. I think that if you could make low-sugar wagashi by replacing sugar with sweeteners, changing mirin (sweet cooking rice wine) to a low-sugar one to give it a good richness, or some other creative way, diabetics and people with lifestyle-related diseases would buy them. Beans such as azuki are good for one's health and are a low-sugar ingredient.
There are many low-sugar confections available. I know it is difficult, but I think Japanese confectioneries need to be updated or they will fall behind the times.

4 In my 40s, I started eating Japanese sweets instead of cakes. Cakes are a little too much for my stomach, and I can still enjoy them with more fruits, but I can no longer finish a piece with a lot of whipped cream without thinking it is delicious. On the other hand, I buy Japanese sweets like yokan, which can be cut into pieces and eaten as much as I like, because they are easy to eat. Also, I wonder if they are classified as wagashi. I also started buying sponge cakes from good stores. However, just like cakes, I can buy 1 or 2 pieces of wagashi at convenience stores or supermarkets, so if I don't want to splurge, I just go to a convenience store. I think the reason is not so much that people are moving away from wagashi, but rather that there are more and more stores where you can buy wagashi at a reasonable price.

5  I often buy wagashi, but I don't buy "rakugan" and "nerikiri".
I have an image that "Ochagan" and "Nerikiri" are served at tea ceremonies and other formal occasions.
When there are fewer gatherings, consumption naturally decreases.

6 I have known about them since I was a child at a kindergarten tea ceremony.
But I think most people only start eating it when they grow up.
Recently, I've been seeing products made to look like animals or yurukyaras at train stations and department stores, so I've been thinking about the traditional shapes and sales methods of old people.
It must be hard for long-established stores that have a traditional shape and sales method to survive in this day and age.

7 I have the impression that "Uiro" is a famous confectionery in the central part of Japan, but I wonder if it is a national specialty.
I don't know if it's a national specialty or not, but I've seen it in department stores in my neighborhood.
It's hard to finish the plain ones, but the cherry blossom flavor is delicious, so there may be room for growth depending on the taste.

8 This is a bit off topic, but when I visited Mie, I saw "Ibaramochi," which is a type of rice cake called "Ibaramochi.
I found a local wagashi called "Ibaramochi," which is a substitute for Kashiwa Mochi with bok choy leaves.
It is said that in areas where oak leaves are not available, the leaves are changed.
I think there are many such wagashi that are not well known throughout Japan.
I hope that wagashi shops will publicize them more on SNS.

9 Has the demand for wagashi decreased? Young people are leaving wagashi? If so, why do people line up for Daifuku at Demachi Futaba? Isn't it simply because they are delicious?

10 It is really unfortunate that Kinokuniya went out of business this time. Maybe there are many people who do not know the taste of Japanese sweets. I know some of you may resist if I write this, but even the same bun or daifuku looks completely different from the ones sold in supermarkets or convenience stores. Like Demachi Futaba, those made in the traditional way become hard the next day. To make them last longer, sugar or syrup would be added to the rice cake to prevent it from hardening, but they dare not do so, instead focusing on the texture and taste.

Therefore, they cannot be kept in stock and must be bought on the day they are eaten. Nowadays, there are no more people who go shopping every day, and there are no more shopping malls in the neighborhood where you can quickly and easily go and buy. I think these lifestyle changes have made it harder to buy wagashi.

11 In the past, there used to be a good wagashi shop in the neighborhood, but now there are none, and we have to buy wagashi at the supermarket. I wish there was a wagashi shop.

12 I have heard that you have to be a certain age to appreciate the quality of wagashi, but that long-established stores need gradual innovation in order to survive. Whether this is in terms of products or management depends on each individual, but simply adhering to history is the only way to go out of business.

13 Around me, there are more people in their 50s and older who don't like anko (red bean paste), and many of my classmates and friends in their 30s and younger don't dare to choose Japanese sweets because there are so many varieties of sweets available.
I myself have always preferred Japanese sweets to Western sweets since I was a child, but since I moved away from my hometown, there are only two stores near my house that sell Nerikiri, and I had to overcome the difficult atmosphere to enter the store to buy one. I hope they will somehow recover because I love them because they look delicate, cute and beautiful, and they are gentle in calories and taste compared to western sweets.

14 Compared to today's cheap and tasty sweets, Japanese sweets are expensive, tasteless, and don't last long. Because a lot of sugar is used, it tastes almost exclusively of sugar sweetness. Of course, there are some good wagashi shops, but they are few.
Another reason is the decline of the culture of having wagashi with tea. It is only memorized once in a home economics textbook. However, there is hope. Some wagashiya are innovative, devising new packaging and sales methods, incorporating Western ingredients and techniques, and starting to advertise on Instagram. Collaborations with cafes to invent coffee pairings, etc. are also thriving.
I think it is important to always keep trying new challenges rather than sticking to tradition and sitting on your seat.

15 There is a large shrine where I moved to when I changed jobs, and there is a long-established Japanese sweets shop at the entrance to the shrine. Whenever it comes to the far shore or seasonal festivals, there is a long line of people waiting to buy sweets. They are very particular about the ingredients and very tasty, and I have become addicted to wagashi.
Of course, overeating is not good, but since they are low in fat, I feel half as guilty as I do with Western sweets.
The downside is that they don't last long, but since I live alone, they don't mind if I buy just one to eat that day. The store also takes the stance that you should eat it on the same day. I recently discovered that Japanese sweets go surprisingly well with coffee and have a modern taste.
It is an inevitable part of the process of elimination, but I hope that quality Japanese confectionery shops will survive.

16  Wagashi is delicious. They are also popular overseas.Colorful and pop sweets look good, and young people spread them and advertise them on their own at an extraordinary speed.

17 Many of the managers of long-established shops are probably elderly, and if they could take a better approach to young people, they would be able to open up many new avenues.

18 The problem with sweets that look good is that people buy them, take a picture of them, leave them, and then throw them away. It's a complete turnaround. I would like to see Japanese confectionaries better communicated and loved for a long time for their moderate size, reasonable price, and health-friendliness.

19 Not only in this case, but also in other cases where it becomes unprofitable. I hope that they will continue to be loved for a long time. I know there are a lot of people who express their regret every time the news comes out, but I think that if you want to regret it, you should buy it on a regular basis. And it's only temporary. It's because the number of buyers has decreased. It is irresponsible.

20 I don't really have an image that sweets from Japanese confectioners are expensive. Certainly, there are sweets for gift-giving that cost several thousand yen, but they are not so different from assorted baked sweets at western confectionery stores, and there are also fresh sweets (daifuku, fu-manju, etc.) sold in the showcases of stores for 100 to 200 yen each. Of course, it is up to you whether you buy or not, and there are differences in the lineup and texture depending on the store, but I think it would be a shame to close a store without knowing what it tastes like, so if the store is within your living area, you should feel free to try it.
I also recommend stores that make both Japanese and Western-style confections.

21 I think it would be better to go to a shop in your neighborhood if you don't know what they are.
I think that "Uiro," "Ochigami," and "Nerikiri" are common knowledge among Japanese, but only half of those in their 50s and older recognize them? Is this true?

22 If so, doesn't it mean that the decline of Japanese confectionery has been going on for a long time?
There are many kinds of wagashi that do not have a "formal" appearance, but they are not well known, so it is difficult to get hold of them.

23 The roots of this problem seem to be quite deep. Perhaps it is too late for the industry to do something about it. As a person who loves Japanese sweets, this is a very confusing issue.

24 Compared to today's cheap and tasty sweets, wagashi are expensive, tasteless, and don't last long. Because so much sugar is used, they are almost exclusively sugar-sweetened. Of course, there are some good wagashi shops, but they are few.
Another reason is the decline of the culture of having wagashi with tea. It is only memorized once in a home economics textbook.
However, there is hope. Some wagashiya are innovative, devising new packaging and sales methods, incorporating Western ingredients and techniques, and starting to advertise on Instagram. Collaborations with cafes to invent coffee pairings, etc. are also thriving.
I think it is important to always continue to take on new challenges, rather than sticking to tradition and sitting on your laurels.

25 I think the point is simply that Western confectionery means something other than Japanese confectionery, so the point is to have a lot of variation, isn't it?

And there seems to be some kind of restriction on Japanese confectionery.
Is it correct to think that it would be difficult to increase the variations because of the limited ingredients used?

Recently, there are dorayaki with whipped cream, but I'm not sure if that's considered a wagashi or not.

There are many wagashi that are beautiful to look at.
Tradition is important, but there are probably some products that are commonplace now that were considered impossible in the past. It is natural that everything changes with the times, so it would be good to be flexible and not harden our thinking.

If we did that, I think we would be able to make wagashi with freer ideas and a broader interpretation of the ingredients.

It would also be good to take hints from Western confectionaries without setting our own boundaries.

That being said, I think it would be acceptable to some extent if we imitate the appearance or even the name of the confectionery.

26 This is completely my personal opinion, but there are some very good Japanese confectioneries, both those with a long history and those without, but I feel that there are many stores that do not change much from the traditional way of making Japanese confectioneries. To be honest, all stores have the same taste and assortment of products, which is boring. I think that prosperous wagashi shops make various efforts, such as seasonal or store-specific products, new products, adjustment of sweetness, and marketing strategies. On the other hand, I feel like there are only plain, routine items made throughout the year without any change.

27 Per capita rice consumption has dropped by half in 50 years, and fish consumption has dropped about 40% since peaking in 2001. As more choices are introduced, and those that are considered better than the previous choices in terms of cost, the existing ones will decrease. That's all there is to it. The reason why the succession talk is not attractive to successors is because it is not attractive to successors, and this is true for agriculture, for example. I don't think it is essential to take a part of the vicious circle and discuss it as if it were the cause.

28 Because it is Japanese confectionery, because it is Western confectionery. I don't think consumers are buying confectioneries based on such a cut-and-dried approach. Western confectioneries are doing their best in various aspects such as appearance, taste, combination, media strategy, etc. to capture the consumer's mindset. In the same way, I think it is possible to create hit products and products that are well-liked within the confectionery category by devising and striving to stimulate the consumer mindset. From this perspective, it may be difficult to find major superstars in the Japanese confectionery lineup. If we stick to traditional culture, we will not be able to create such things. It is a matter of learning from the past.

29 There are many wagashi stores near my house, but all of them have customers, and in the evening they are sold out. In terms of price, Japanese confectionery is not that expensive compared to Western confectionery, and many of them are beautiful in appearance. People who eat wagashi sold in supermarkets may not understand how delicious they are. Taiyakis are also seen with children lining up to buy them, and it is not that anko (red bean paste) is unacceptable. Western and Japanese confectionaries coexist in harmony. Gairo is a famous confectionery in Nagoya, so it is possible that it is not that familiar in the rest of the country, and I think it is true that rakugan is not something that is usually eaten frequently. I think the teenagers who don't know about it are more likely to not know about it because their parents don't eat it or have never eaten it. Maybe this reporter just doesn't eat or dislike Japanese sweets.

30 It is true that the younger generation may not be interested in wagashi. However, when I was young, I also had little interest in wagashi. I only had an image of the taste of wagashi sold in supermarkets. Now, my image of wagashi has changed. Good wagashi are (to some extent) expensive, but they are delicious and fun to look at. I thought it was a food that suits Japanese people because of its texture, moderate sweetness, etc. There is always a line of people waiting in line, or they are sold out immediately. In this day and age, there is an overflow of information, and if it is truly delicious, it will sell regardless of the genre, such as Japanese or Western confectionery. On the other hand, mass-produced products that are not differentiated from the competition are going out of business. I think it is the same for western confectioneries.

31 If we do not get rid of the image of excessive sugar use, we may have no choice but to live on in a small way as "culture" rather than as "food.
I love Japanese sweets, but I find it hard to touch them frequently when I think about my body. Some of them still use saccharin or dyes that are banned in other countries, which makes me doubt the safety of the product.

32 I don't think the article is wrong, but it seems a bit scattershot. As an ala-retiree, I am relatively fond of Japanese sweets, but even so, I have fewer and fewer opportunities to eat them in my daily life. First of all, many wagashi do not last long. As we get older, we tend to cut back on sweets, but if they don't last for a long time, we often can't finish eating them. In addition, the variety of ingredients is limited, and most confections are made with red bean paste or sugar, making it difficult to change the flavor. I, for example, prefer to keep the taste the same, so this is not a problem for me, but it may not be so for younger people. Japanese food and Japanese confectionery culture is a hurdle for Japanese people to overcome when they go out for a casual meal. For casual dining out, Japanese food is not an option, and for sweets, Western sweets are more affordable. This is probably due to the large distance between popular culture and traditional Japanese culture.

33 Japanese confectionery is not as visually spectacular as Western confectionery, so taste and refined appearance are the key to success, but Japanese confectionery has a more delicate taste than Western confectionery, and the technique seems to be more difficult. Especially nowadays, it is more difficult to match taste, technique, and appearance than with Western confectioneries because of the photographic advantage, and it is likely that Western confectioneries have a wider range of supporters. Western confectioneries that use oil, butter, and cream are more popular among young people than wagashi, and even the matcha green tea, anko (red bean paste), and kinako (soybean flour) used in wagashi sell better when combined with parfaits, ice cream, and whipped cream. When I was young, I did not understand the appeal of wagashi at all, and I loved whipped cream and hated anko (red bean paste). Now that I am older and have learned the tea ceremony, I know that there are delicious wagashi, and I also like anko (red bean paste). I hope that fresh sweets with seasonal designs and simple yet sophisticated wagashi with a long history will remain because they will taste good when I get older, but I understand that it is difficult.

34 I think your argument is a bit forced. When it comes to Japanese sweets, the "Nama-yatsuhashi" type mentioned in the text, the classic "Akafuku" and Sendai's "Zunda-mochi" are still popular, although their sales may have declined due to the Corona disaster. The same is true for western confectioneries, whose sales have also declined due to the Corona disaster. Ishiya Seika, which makes the nationally famous "Shiroi Koibito," has also fallen into the red for the fiscal year ending April 2021. Compared to Western confectioneries, which offer a wide variety of ingredients, Japanese confectioneries, which mainly use red bean paste, are at a disadvantage, but this can be covered by such products as "Strawberry Daifuku" and "Chestnut Bean Paste". Wagashi have an image of being relatively expensive, and these confections were often used as gifts or souvenirs for important corporate visits. As for those, I think it is true that parties and visits are decreasing and decreasing due to the Corona disaster, but that is also true for tourist souvenirs of western-style confections. In the end, I feel that it is up to the individual companies.

35 It is true that the younger generation may not be as interested in wagashi. However, when I was young, I was not so interested in wagashi either. I only had an image of the taste of wagashi sold in supermarkets. Now, my image of wagashi has changed. Good wagashi are (to some extent) expensive, but they are delicious and fun to look at. I thought it was a food that suits Japanese people because of its texture, moderate sweetness, etc. There is always a line of people waiting in line, or they are sold out immediately. In this day and age, there is an overflow of information, and if it is truly delicious, it will sell regardless of the genre, such as Japanese or Western confectionery. On the other hand, mass-produced products that are not differentiated from the competition are going out of business.
I think it is the same for western confectioneries.

36This article is written in the image of Japanese confectioneries that are generally made of bean jam. There are many variations of wagashi, so it may be a bit confusing. Well, I guess it could be said that all sweets, including anko (bean paste) sweets and nerikiri, are made from sweetened beans, which is the same thing. I have often heard that even foreign people think that Nerikiri looks different but tastes the same. I often hear that foreign people think so too. There are many Japanese people who don't know anything about it nowadays. There is also "nama-gashi" (fresh sweets) and "dried sweets" (dried sweets). Dagashi is not the same as "Umaka-bo. There are tremendous variations and regional differences.
It is more of a luxury item than a food, so it is only natural. I can imagine the breadth of Japanese food culture. I feel like there is an overwhelming lack of basic knowledge for this. In Japan, you're not good at maintaining ancient traditions and you want to tinker with them. I can tell the difference between new things because of the classics.

37Wagashi is a Japanese confectionery that is delicious and has its own goodness. It is a different kind of sweetness than Western confectionery, so it seems to me that the decline in sales to the point of going out of business is simply a matter of developing demand or management. Even western confectionaries are being eliminated for the sake of elimination, and the fact that teenagers don't know about them means that their parents' generation doesn't know about them or have no interest in them either. In other words, this is not a recent development. It's just that it has continued to decline. Well, in fact, there are probably some places that are still doing fine, and the demand is not going away. I think this is a result of the fact that the not-so-good parts of long-established shops are largely conspicuous, so in the end, I guess it comes down to whether or not there are managers who can run the business.

38 As for Japanese sweets shops, there are some famous local stores that have lasted for quite a while. However, when I pass by for the first time in several years and decide to drop by, I find that the place has been developed and is no longer recognizable, or has moved to another location. I think the time to replace them is the critical point. The cycle of opening new confectionery stores and going out of business is very fast. I have the sense that the number of confectionery stores is certainly greater, but I can't think of any local confectionery store that has been in business for two generations. The father of a former pastry store owner I know who went out of business a few years ago told me that when he tried to pass on his skills to younger workers, they wanted to leave early and were not willing to take the initiative to learn. There may be pros and cons to this, but I think it is difficult to get children today to take over jobs that are passed down from teacher to apprentice and craftsman to craftsman.

39 The middle-aged and elderly, who are the main consumers of anko, have stopped eating sweets, and I think this is due in no small part to the influence of health consciousness. It is true that red bean paste is rich in dietary fiber, but there are many Japanese sweets in general that have a surprisingly high sugar content, and some of them are difficult to understand because of the 100g nutritional information label. In addition, the number of people who shun sugar is increasing, and even Japanese confectioneries are now being carefully screened. On the other hand, the lack of animal ingredients may make it easier to develop organic and vegan products. The key is how to step out of the traditional shell and meet the needs of today. I believe that wagashi has the potential to overcome this challenge.

40 For people today, sweets have a strong fashion aspect, and with the development of social networking services, the importance of appearance has increased dramatically, and inevitably, Western-style confectionaries with a flashy and recognizable appearance are perceived as more "attractive," and supply will increase along with demand. Wagashi, on the other hand, are simple, elegant, and unadorned, and can be associated with "kimonos" and "green tea. It is not a matter of which is "good" or "bad," but rather that they are not an option for people nowadays in their daily lives. When they think of "sweets," they think of Western confectionaries, and Japanese confectionaries are not something they think of except as "Japanese confectionaries.

41 It is no wonder that wagashi made by long-established stores that have kept the traditional methods and flavors are not familiar to young people. Perhaps there are few opportunities to see or hear about them. I think we live in an age where people are always looking for something new, where if it gets a buzz, it sells big, and if it doesn't, they don't even look at it. The same is true of music. I think it is the effect of publicity. If influencers talk about it, it will get buzz. I think it will be difficult to do business unless the quality of products and marketing are in line with the times.

42 I think the point is to have a lot of variations of products, simply because western-style confectionery means something other than Japanese confectionery. And is it correct to say that there seems to be some kind of restriction on wagashi, and that it is difficult to increase the number of variations due to the limited ingredients used? Recently, there are dorayaki with whipped cream, but I have a hard time deciding if it is a wagashi or not. There are many wagashi that were originally beautiful to look at, and while tradition is important, there are probably products that are commonplace today that were considered impossible in the past. It is natural that everything changes with the times, so it would be good to be flexible and not harden our thinking. If we do so, we can create wagashi with freer ideas and a broader interpretation of the ingredients. It would also be good to take hints from Western confectionaries without setting our own boundaries. It would be acceptable to imitate the appearance or even the name to some extent, wouldn't it?


花見女子






イケメン過ぎて声のかけられない店員さん登場人物4月

たまに、イケメンすぎて声がかけられない店員さん主人公とヒーロー君達の漫画も連載しています。よかったら是非遊びに来てください。フィクションなので盛ったのはどうかおおめにみてください。


スーパー三和父の日2022


◆トレンド感溢れる人気記事一覧◆2022年版

ナナイの漫画アルバム作りました
きちんと連載を始めたのは3月上旬からですので、上記2冊のアルバムで5月までのお話はざっくり読めます。
記事を読むのがめんどい時は、上記2個のアドレスを是非お気に入りに登録くださいませ。
更新したらまた追加になります。



イケメン過ぎて声のかけられない店員さん 過去の登場人物

漫画新キャラ3月より


関連記事