|Term Paper Title
||Comparing Japan And American Food Markets
|# of Words
|# of Pages (250 words per page double spaced)
Comparing Japan and American Food Markets
The Japanese Market has become vital to the U.S. Economy. Japan is the
number one export market for the United States. In 1993, Japan accounted for
37.6 percent of the total growth in U.S. value-added exports.
U.S. food products, in particular, are a huge market in Japan. American
agricultural exports to Japan in 1993 were $8.7 billion. About one-third of
Japanese agricultural imports come from the United States. However, there is
sometimes a mixed reception in Japan regarding products from the United States.
Japanese, on one hand, wish to do things "American" ever since the Second World
War. But, on the other hand, U.S. products are perceived as less sophisticated
than Japanese and European food products, in product formulation or packaging.
Also, U.S. products are considered not as safe as domestics ones, due to the use
of pesticides and chemical additives and the partiality of the Japanese consumer
to purchase Japanese items.
The reason for the large volume of exporting to Japan is due to United
State's comparative advantages. Food products are very expensive to produce in
Japan. Japan's current labor shortage, combined with import restrictions and
domestic price stabilization programs, have driven up domestic production costs.
The Japanese food consumption pattern consist of an openness to foreign
products and a strong interest in things international. All types of
international cuisine can be found in Japan. Many varieties of tropical and
imported fruits, such as Florida grapefruit, California cherries, New Zealand
kiwifruit, and Hawaiian papayas are readily available in supermarkets and
department stores, as are imported alcoholic beverages ranging from Kentucky
bourbon and Chinese beer to Russian vodka and California sake.
Japanese food consumption is marked by short-term trends. For example,
Korean and Mexican food became popular a few years ago and then unpopular.
There have also been Italian and Spanish food booms.
The Japanese economic recession has shifted the focus of many consumers
to the more affordable neighborhood restaurants that feature traditional
Japanese dishes. This has made consumers price conscious at grocery counters,
which benefits cheaper imported goods. As a result, imported foods account for
over half of Japan's average annual caloric intake. Moreover, with Japanese
agriculture contracting, Japan's reliance on (and openness toward) imported food
products will continue to increase.
In the future, the United States may no longer be consid...
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