Summer is upon us, which means everyone in Japan is scrambling for ways to beat the impending heat and humidity of the coming months. For some, that means stocking up on cooling sprays while others look forward to catching cold noodles as they slide through cool running water.
It’s a great time of year for Imuraya, makers of the Azuki Bar ice candy. Made with the distinctive Japanese taste of azuki sweet beans, these long selling treats are an essential part of summer in Japan.
That being said, however, there hasn’t been a whole lot of innovation with the Azuki Bar over the years. This is perhaps what brought forth the meeting of the minds between Imuraya and potato chip maker Yamayosh, which went as follows.
One day last year…
Yamayoshi: “We’d like to make potato chips with an azuki taste.”
Imuraya: “Azuki potato chips…”
Yamayoshi: “And they ought to be chilled.”
Imuraya: “Chilled potato chips…”
Yamayoshi: “It would be great if you could supervise.”
Yamayoshi: “We are bringing prototypes.”
Yamayoshi: “Using your company’s azuki powder,”
Imuraya: “Our company’s…”
Yamayoshi: “We tried various combinations.”
Yamayoshi: “And we have three kinds.”
Imuraya: “Three kinds!”
Yamayoshi: “We would like to proceed further.”
Imuraya: “Let’s meet asap!”
And that my friends, is the story of how Imuraya Supervised Salt Azuki Flavored Eat It Chilled?! chips came to be.
Despite its convoluted name, netizens were thrilled with the union and are looking forward to the chips’ release on 25 June nationwide.
“What are you doing?! (I mean that in a good way)”
“I thought it was going to be fried azuki bean for a moment.”
“I like the spirit of this venture!”
“I thought it was a joke at first, but I’m glad it’s not!”
As the name implies, the chips are recommended to be severed chilled to recreate that Azuki Bar eating experience in a chip. Of course, if you want to enjoy them at room temperature, the chip police won’t come and stop you, but you’ll only be cheating yourself in the end.
The flavoring is in good hands as Yamayoshi are the ones behind the wasabi-beef flavored masterpiece Wasa beef potato chips.
In fact, you can win a plush toy of the Wasabeef mascot, Wasatchi, along with other prizes during the first two weeks of the Imuraya Supervised Salt Azuki Flavored Eat It Chilled?! chips’ release at participating convenience stores across Japan.
These chips are mysterious in that one wonders if they, like the Azuki Bar, will be hard enough to drive nails. And yet they are also enlightening in that we can see how major business partnerships are formed and executed by one company simply repeating what the other is saying and trailing off.
Source: Yamayoshi, Twitter/@IMURAYA_DM, My Game News Flash
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Source: Japan Today