Japan Focus: Ajinomoto and Meiji to cut food waste, Kikkoman’s data-backed flavour pairing system, Japan’s first anti-counterfeit facility and more

By Hui Ling Dang

- Last updated on GMT

©Getty Images
©Getty Images

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Ajinomoto and Meiji’s commitment to cut food waste, Kikkoman’s data-backed flavour pairing system to further penetrate the Indian market, Japan’s first anti-counterfeit facility and more feature in this edition of Japan Focus.

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Food allergy fears: New survey reveals insufficient data, research, and management in most APAC countries

There are vast unaddressed food allergy-related challenges in the Asia-Pacific region, including the absence of reliable prevalence data, allergists, and adrenaline autoinjectors, with researchers arguing there is an urgent need to better prepare for food safety incidents.

A cross-sectional survey initiated by the Asia Pacific Association of Allergy Asthma and Clinical Immunology (APAAACI) set out to assess the current disease burden, resource availability, and management practices of food allergies among healthcare providers in the region.

The survey garnered responses from Australia, Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong SAR, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mongolia, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Supply and demand: Ajinomoto and Meiji among Japanese brands to focus on inventory management to cut food waste

Major Japanese brands Ajinomoto and Meiji have highlighted how efficient inventory management will be key to reduce food waste throughout their supply chains, as part of their commitment to the national Food Loss Reduction Declaration.

The Declaration is led by the Consumer Affairs Agency (CAA) in Japan. As of November last year, CAA had secured commitments from over 100 local businesses to reduce food loss and food waste in their operations.

Among these are dairy giant Meiji, which has opted to utilise new expiration date labelling and inventory management, and amino acid specialist firm Ajinomoto, which has committed to reduce food loss in its operations by 50%.

Cracking the code: Kikkoman develops data-backed flavour pairing system to localise products for Indian market

Japanese firm Kikkoman is using research and data to identify Indian ingredients that are best paired with its soy sauce, in an effort to accelerate product development and further penetrate the local market.

It has devised a system called KIP (Kikkoman Ingredients x Seasoning Pairing), which “scientifically evaluates” the taste compatibility of its signature soy sauce with Indian ingredients​ and seasonings.

The KIP system would allow Kikkoman to develop new products specifically tailored for the market based on data, and not guesswork or intuition.

Countering counterfeits: Japan establishes first physical facility to find fake food ‘exports’ in Thailand

Japan has set up a physical anti-counterfeit consultation desk in Thailand to fight against a rising number of food and agriculture products claiming to be of Japanese origin.

This consultation desk is the first of its kind established by Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), and headed by its Export and International Bureau Intellectual Property Division.

This will be the first step in a new planned framework to be set up in collaboration with various ministries to combat counterfeit agriculture, fishery and food products found in overseas markets.

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