The fourth edition of Oishii Japan concluded with a record attendance of 10,910 attendees from 26 countries. The 9% increase from its previous edition is a testament to the continuous demand for authentic Japanese food, beverages and technologies in ASEAN despite strong market competition.
Established business platform
Oishii Japan has strengthened itself as a premier business ground for Japanese F&B businesses. 41% of the trade attendees made purchases and placed orders at Oishii Japan while 51% of them are expected to place orders in the next 12 months.
51% of the trade visitors were new attendees from countries such as Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, United Kingdom, United States of America and Vietnam.
With more than half of the attendees attending for the first time, Oishii Japan has established itself as the ideal platform for Japanese F&B businesses seeking new contacts and fresh opportunities in ASEAN and beyond.
Many exhibiting companies have also leveraged on Oishii Japan as the launch pad for new products and services. Commissioned by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Sakefan World introduced an Apple iOS app that usesrecognition techniques to differentiate between the labels used by sake breweries, making it easier to pull out information of sake varieties.
New business partnerships such as Ocharaka by Ferrano made its debut at Oishii Japan. Ferrano, a small home appliance company that is based in Singapore partnered with Ocharaka, a leading purveyor of exquisite Japanese teas and flavoured teas. Attendees were delighted with samples of Ocharaka teas served in Ferrano double wall glasses that insulated heat and stayed cool to the touch.
“The event was good and an eye-opener. Japanese food is gaining popularity abroad and in Vietnam, so it is important to attend events such as Oishii Japan”, opined Mr Dinh Vinh Cuong, CEO of Tokyo Mart, Vietnam.
“I was interested in ready products for the hotel and I am amazed with the good quality of frozen food here,” enthused Mr Suhalmi of the Intercontinental Hotel, Malaysia.
Bringing the best of Japanese produce and food technologies to ASEAN
Besides being a commercial platform for Japanese F&B companies, Oishii Japan also serves as an educational tool for attendees to learn more about the intricacies of Japanese cuisine, technologies, delicacies and culture.
Mr Masanao Nishida, Director of Oishii Japan, shared his vision, “Japan’s geography lends itself to a range of regional climates that are suitable for producing a variety of fruits, vegetables, seafood, meat and alcoholic beverages that in turn, influence the cuisine in each region. The specialties from each prefecture remain as a source of pride and tradition. What is interesting to note is that out of Japan, this distinction is lost and the food is simply termed as ‘Japanese food’. With almost 90% of the Japanese prefectures at Oishii Japan showcasing their regional produce this year, I hope that Oishii Japan has allowed visitors to learn more about each prefecture and their specialties”.
With Mr Nishida’s intent to enlighten the audience about Japan’s hidden treasures, shochu took the spotlight at Oishii Japan. Shochu’s domestic consumption is on par with sake but the former is a lesser known Japanese alcoholic beverage in this part of the world. In a bid to heighten the awareness of shochu, 36 varieties of Honkaku Shochu (本格焼酎) and Awamori Shochu (泡盛) were showcased at Oishii Japan. The Japan Sake and Shochu Makers Association (JSS) participated for the first time and presented shochu from different distilleries. It was so well-received at Oishii Japan that Satsuma Shuzo, one of the exhibiting companies, sold out all of its single distilled variety at the fair.
Food demonstrations, tastings, workshops
The appeal of food demonstrations, samplings and workshops drew in new trade and public visitors over the three-day event. Constant innovation is a buzzword in the Japanese F&B scene and food demonstrations by Lewin Terrace and Wild Rocket showcased how traditional Japanese ingredients were used to create fusion dishes that appeal to the increasingly discerning consumers.
Sushi Fight! was another engaging session where volunteers were handpicked from the audience to challenge Chef Takuya Matsumoto and Chef Shuji Sawada from Maguro-Donya Miura-Misaki-Kou
Sushi & Dining in a sushi making competition.
The workshops were open to the public and received overwhelming response with all slots filled up thirty minutes after Oishii Japan opened its doors on the last day. Participants learnt how to make maki sushi with ABC Cooking Studio’s Tamaru Reina. A Singaporean delight, the Hainanese chicken rice, was given a new twist when it was transformed into a kawaii chicken bento set under the clever interpretation from Shirley Wong of Little Miss Bento. Children and adults alike had an engaging time participating in the bento making workshop, with many sharing their creations on social media.
Anticipation for the 2016 edition
Oishii Japan is well-placed in the minds of the attendees as 76.4% indicated their interest to attend the event in 2016 while 87.9% of them will recommend Oishii Japan to their industry counterparts.
Oishii Japan will return in October 2016 at Suntec Singapore. For more information, please visit www.oishii-world.com/en.