An Enduring Essence Through Changing Expressions
Reception for the Edo Tokyo Kirari Project held in London and Paris in January.
At Eitaro Sohonpo’s booth, Hanehitoe drew attention with its crunchy texture combined with how it immediately melts in the mouth.
“For this exhibition, we collaborated with a European designer to make the packaging plain with a simple design, embellishing this simple image with color, and adding Japanese writing to emphasize it being a Japanese product. Additionally, to meet the upsurge of the anti-plastic movement abroad, we changed the plastic packaging to paper,” said Kanie Koichi, who is in charge of product planning and development.
Normal package design.
The design for this reception.(not for sale)
In 2013, withwashoku(Japanese food) being registered as an Intangible Cultural Property, what kind of growth will Eitaro Sohonpo shoot for, with the growing interest inwagashi(Japanese sweets) in overseas markets?
“We’d definitely like to market to people abroad. But that doesn’t mean that we’ll change our flavors to match the palate of people abroad. We want to show them that this is the taste ofwagashi. We believe that if we provide products that are made carefully with no cut corners, we’ll definitely be able to communicate the deliciousness ofwagashi.”
Eitaro Sohonpo has made new products that fit the movements of the market while protecting their traditional flavors. Among them, the novelty of the Ameya Eitaro brand “Sweet Lip” has become a big hit; it contains Aruheito, a traditional candy made by carefully boiling down sugar and starch syrup, sold in lip gloss packaging.
“Even though the way we express ourselves is changing, our essence never changes,” said Mr. Kanie. Protecting traditional flavors itself may be Eitaro Sohonpo’s raison d’etre. If that thought is sincerely expressed, then surely it will be well-received abroad.