Understanding the local taste

School of Economics
Akane ASANO 

Presentation in JETRO:

     In JETRO, we made the presentation for working mothers to consume Japanese frozen foods. Frozen foods increase nutritional vales, in Singapore the rate of women’s employment is higher than that of Japan, and based Japanese food is gaining attention in the Japanese food. In response to that presentation, JETRO gave the following challenges. First, Distribution cost of frozen goods are too costly. Second, since eating out culture is rooted, it is necessary to fight against eating out culture. Third, how to promote of frozen food.
What I noticed at POKKA Singapore:
     My big discovery at POKKA Singapore was the importance of making local taste. In Japan it is common that no green tea contains sugar, but in Singapore green tea is sweet with sugar in it. After that, I asked NUS students, they said that green tea is usually sweet.  In order to match the taste of Singapore, POKKA Singapore need the power of local employees, not Japanese staff. Among the drinks of POKKA Singapore, there is “rose milk”. I didn’t think it was delicious to drink it. Many lase flavor drink were sold in the city. The color is the same as the cosmetics I had, very pale pink and taste like a fragrance. A local young lady preferred drinking it. Such product couldn’t be made by Japanese staff.  (Figure on the right)
     Another discovery is how POKKA Singapore sell POKKA beverages. It was also interesting to introduce vending machines, but I was more interested in being more devised to put POKKA beverages in Hawker Center. 
In our presentation, we talked about the merits of frozen foods of Japanese food but I realized that we didn’t really understand local people’s preferences and lives only by looking at the internet. If we want to supplement nutrition to eat frozen foods, I think that not only Japanese food but also the frozen food of local taste with nutrition local taste may be good by the technology of Japanese frozen food companies. And as a problems of frozen foods, eating out culture was mentioned, but I thought that I sell as a garnish at the Hawker Center it would be easier to accept frozen foods. In other words, frozen food wouldn’t coexist instead of competing with culture. On the other hand, there is the problem how to store frozen food at a high temperature Hawker Center.
Through the field work:
       Investigating the local 4 super store, I noticed that there are corners of the Japan food is sort of the Takashimaya Department store, Isetan Department store, had put Japan food frozen food, but the supermarket in the town did not especially provided Japan food corner was not left Japan frozen food. distribution costs are given as high prices of frozen food (Japan 1.5-2 x), package is the same as what Japan by local people who can't read and wondered. 
One of the interesting things is founding the hypothesis is the process when one interesting had interviews in Japan frozen food to buy in. And the hypothesis "eat cup noodles and sweets in Japan-a Japan-Japan frozen food to eat" that flow. Especially Japan frozen food is expensive, they can buy only occasionally were like buy from delicious. I was surprised, knowing only had recommends frozen foods in Japan “food = healthy” image as our health than for Japan food taste. I thought should tell more clearly the taste and taste Japan with other foods, frozen foods are also seeking its tastiness if package written in English. (POKKA Singapore products received a colorful, easy-to-understand package)
 And, in the booth doing the USA fair food salesman who was doing explanation of how to make a frozen foods. I thought that in this country still frozen foods is not rooted. Saw in the survey, Japan companies a wide variety of foods, but many local specialties-NISSIN CUPNOODLE taste and 7 different flavors such as chili-crab, black-pepper- crab and Tom-Yum-kun, packages in English and Chinese, so local people could understand easily.

What I learned:
 Through before survey and visiting JETRO and POKKA, I felt strongly to overseas companies must know many of the local. It wasn’t only necessary to searched on the Internet but also to come out looking really feel difference. Difference taste with local people could feel the difference really in the know to actually eat it, drink it. I felt that Japan has penetrated local sweets and instant noodles will fit in that regard. Frozen foods could find a challenge that on the points. The common sense for me is that relies heavily on environment where I was born, so I think that we have to look the outside view.