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It has changed a custom in Japan
A Pioneer in Mineral Water Business
Date:30, Apr, 2011
Investigated and Written by Misaka Youhei
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It has been natural for people to buy water to drink overseas. But it had never been natural in Japan. Most of Japanese, early in 1980’s, had reckoned water free.

Of course, not all of Japanese in those days had been satisfied with tap water. The room to step in was found by a team in House Foods Corporation. They were just investigating a new drink product because House Foods Corporation was about to make their way into the drink business at that time. Then, they made a decision to sell mineral water.

In 1982, the team had investigated what mineral water could be accepted by consumers in Japan. After repeating many meetings and marketing, they decided to“meet the demand in the home lives”and to“use a place name on naming the product.”

How did they find there was the demand in the home lives? That was predicted by their research on the situation of having water abroad and into consciousness of Japanese in those days. And they thoroughly carried out surveys among consumers in Nippon and it was concluded that water which make most of Japanese like to drink could be one in some specific place to visit on traveling or something. Therefore singled out was Rokkou that has been famous as a source of good water.

The team did a lot of discussions also about the product name. In fact, 200 proposals were made. The team chose "Rokkou No Oishii Mizu (Delicious water from Mt. Rokkou)”among 200 ideas because it was very intelligible where water came from.

Then, August in 1983, “Rokkou No Oishii Mizu (Delicious water from Mt. Rokkou)”made its debut at the drink market in Japan.

It had made its debut but not been on smooth sailing. A liter of the water had been priced at 200 yen at the time. It was higher than a liter of milk. Most of Japanese had taken cold attitudes for a long time.

3 years later, a chance dropped in at them, that was in 1986. It became the big news that a lot of rust came from tap water in many places because many buildings had gotten time-worn in those days. That started people on setting much value upon buying water. Sale of the water in the year got over 8 billion yen. Then,“Rokkou No Oishii Mizu (Delicious water from Mt. Rokkou)”began to step for a big brand on mineral water business.

There are hundreds of kinds of water on sale now in Japan and they say, in 2009, a person consumes 19.7 liter of water for a year in Japan though it was 0.7 liter at the early part of 1980’s. Even in Japan, it is no more unusual to buy some mineral water now.

During the time, the pioneer has been improved. For example, using braille on its vessel for blind users or adopting tender paste for easy peeling off. They deserve traces of struggle and effort of the maker.

Last year, spring in 2010, the product was handed over to Asahi Soft Drinks. However, ceaseless effort on the water has been alive. The product has, even lately, been improved and improved. Needless to say, its quality has been, too.

On the field of mineral water business, we expect the product supposed to ceaselessly show many styles and a lot of ideas for ever.





 

From Wakayama, the place of umes
Ume no Hatsukoi