Japan Focus: Reiwa designs, Coca-Cola sugar-free water, Kirin functional food and more feature in our round-up

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Japanese food and beverage firms have introduced new products or revamped their product packaging as the country ushers in a new emperor era. ©Japan Prime Minister's Office
Japanese food and beverage firms have introduced new products or revamped their product packaging as the country ushers in a new emperor era. ©Japan Prime Minister's Office

Related tags: Japan, Coca-cola, Fukushima, Kirin

Reiwa designs, Coca-Cola sugar-free water, Kirin functional food and more feature in this edition of Japan Focus.

Toast to the new emperor: Japan firms mark new “Reiwa” era with commemorative product designs

Japanese food and beverage firms have introduced new products or revamped their product packaging​ as the country ushers in a new emperor era.

The new reign was succeeded by Emperor Naruhito on May 1, replacing his father, Akihito, who had abdicated one day earlier.

The name of the new era “Reiwa” (meaning “beautiful harmony”) was announced one month earlier on April 1, which immediately caught the attention of brand marketing experts.

No sugar: Coca-Cola launches first sugar-free lemon flavoured water in Japan

Coca-Cola has launched the first sugar-free flavoured water under the brand “I LOHAS” in Japan​, with the firm striving to respond to growing demand for better-for-you products.

Launched on April 15, the sugar-free flavoured water contains only mineral water, lemon juice, and lemon flavour extract.

Its launch was meant to provide a healthier alternative, a company spokesman told FoodNavigator-Asia.

“Our target is to get consumers to drink more mineral water and to do so, we are providing them with more options.

No synthetic and odour: Japanese firm launches odour-free red radish food colouring

Japanese ingredient firm San-Ei Gen F.F.I has launched a new ingredient – a red radish-derived food colouring that does not produce an off-flavour​.

As red radish produces a strong stench, its use as a food colouring has been limited. San-Ei Gen F.F.I is seeking to overturn the situation by removing the off-flavour with a special purification technique.

The new food colouring, available in both liquid and powder forms, is able to produce a yellowish red colour at low pH.

In response to queries from FoodNavigator-Asia, Dr Yutaka Higashimura, deputy GM of food colour laboratory of the firm said that the usage of the product was “the same as other anthocyanins”.

‘Meaningless restrictions’: Japan continues to demand South Korean Fukushima food ban repeal after WTO decision

South Korea’s ban on seafood from Fukushima, Japan has been upheld by the World Trade Organisation (WTO)​ after a legal debate spanning several years, despite protests from Japan that the food products are ‘scientifically safe’.

In February last year, a WTO dispute body had deemed South Korea’s ban on seafood from Fukushima to be ‘arbitrarily and unjustifiably discriminate against Japanese products’, and the ban looked set to be lifted.

South Korea appealed this result, and earlier this month the WTO Appellate Body overturned the ruling, which means that current trade restrictions on Japanese seafood will remain in place.

Healthy Ageing APAC Summit: Japanese giants Kirin to showcase functional food innovation strategy

The deputy director of Kirin's Business Creation Department is set to showcase how the firm is striving to meet the needs of the ageing population by maximising the immunity benefits of functional foods​ at the second Healthy Ageing APAC Summit.

In his presentation Dr Daisuke Fujiwara will discuss the immunity and anti-ageing research behind Lactococcus Plasma, the wide range of products it has been used in, and the company’s future innovation plans in the functional food space.

Related topics: Markets, Asian tastes, East Asia

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