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Japanese potato chip flavor innovation: Sour

4 May 2021 by Daisy Li, Mintel Associate Director, Food and Drink

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Looking at the Japanese snack market, Japanese potato chips products are a highly active category. Every year in the Japanese market, a large number of highly creative, innovative and interesting products are launched, making it an important market that leads the world in potato chip product innovation.

Compared to Chinese potato chip products, Japanese potato chips are worth learning from in terms of flavor selection and dimensions.

Based on the Mintel Global New Product Database (GNPD), Salt/Salted is the most mainstream flavor choice of Japanese potato chips. Sour (including Plum and Onion & Sour Cream) also occupy a certain share, second only to the original flavor and the seaweed flavor.

Plum and Onion & Sour Cream are currently the most popular sour flavors in the Japanese Market

Calbee Natsu Potato Kishu Nanko Plum Potato Snack has been repackaged for summer 2020. It is described as crispy, wavy potato chips cut into thick slices, made from GMO-free new potatoes harvested in the early summer months, and seasoned with Nanko ume plums from Kishu for a refreshing taste and a subtle ume aroma.

Pringles Triple Sour Cream & Onion Potato Snack is a limited edition variety. It is made with GMO-free potatoes and said to be three times richer that the sour cream & onion potato snack variety. The product contains no artificial colours and preservatives and retails in a 107g pack.

Vinegar flavored potato chips set off another wave of sourness

Koikeya Meccha Suppamucho Vinegar Flavour Potato Chips have been repackaged due to consumer demand, in a 60g pack bearing a QR code. These GMO-free potato snacks are said to have a hard, firm texture and a very spicy vinegar flavour.

Koikeya Pride Potato Lemon & Vinegar Flavour Potato Chips are now available. They are described as crispy, truly delectable potato chips made under the pride potato manufacturing method, with flavoursome, GMO-free potatoes grown in Japan, with full of umami, which have been deep-fried in different temperatures to the desired crispiness whilst preserving the umami and sweetness of potatoes, and seasoned twice with vinegar and lemons from the Seto region, to guarantee a refreshing, sour flavour.

Koikeya Sappamucho Sour Lemon Potato Snack is now available to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the Koikeya Karamucho range and promote the film Pocket Monsters the Movie.

This report was contributed by knowledge partner: