Foreign Food – The Japan Blog Matsuri

As a proud member of the JapanSoc (a wonderful social networking community for bloggers in Japan), here’s my entry for the February Japan Blog Matsuri, on the entirely unfrugal topic of foreign food.

To put it rather bluntly, if you’re at all serious about your new found frugality – as indeed I am – you need the stay the hell away from foreign food stores. The kind that beckon you in with their sweet smells of home, their thick bars of real Cadburys chocolate and stacks of various pasta sauces from all over the world, not just the homogenous “meat sauce” you find in Japanese supermarkets. But you must be strong, fight the urge.

Firstly, you should consider the amount of fossil fuels it took to bring that food all the way to Japan – can you really justify that kind of environmental damage so you can have a taste of home? Yes? Well – that’s your choice, but then at least bookmark this carbon offset click site and go there daily.

And if you didn’t know already, foreign food is hideously overpriced. Maybe the stores can justify their price with shipping charges and cute part-timers to pack your 1-inch block of cheese with worthless chemical ice-alike-blocks into high quality paper bags; but I can’t. Now we have to pay extra to destroy the environment? Thanks for the priviledge, but what gives – destroying the environment used to be free! You can achieve the same financial damage on your credit card while shopping for one meal worth of over-priced imported foreign food stuffs as you can a whole weeks worth of using locally grown vegetables and Japanese meat.

So what am I trying to say here? If you really want the taste of home, spend the time to make it yourself using locally produced ingredients. Personally, I’m partial to a bit of Chinese egg-fried rice to really make me feel like I’m back in ol’ Blighty 😉

13 thoughts on “Foreign Food – The Japan Blog Matsuri

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  3. But you're seeming to ignore the fact that something like 60% of ALL Japanese food is imported. Also, it's not necessarily correct to assume that food produced and sold in Japan is more environmentally friendly–as a good example, look at the way high quality fruit is packaged in Japan. Yes, getting your home brand meat sauce is probably worse for the world and your wallet than making it yourself, but opting for a local cheese (for example) may be equally as expensive and not necessarily better for the environment (and, of course, not be even slightly comparable by taste)

  4. Thanks for your comments “qwyrxian “.

    Packaging is an entirely separate issue, and I totally agree that the Japanese produce that is packaged excessively is probably not the best option for the environment.

    As for imported food, I'm not ignoring that fact that 60% is imported at all – I'm trying to change it! That's the whole point! Too much food is imported, and we need to stop creating the demand~ In the local supermarket, you can tell which food is actually from within Japan as it will say 国内 somewhere on the label. It's also generally labelled what country it from otherwise, like my local supermarket does regular deals on cheap poor-quality Brazilian chicken.

    Cheese is a difficult one. I think it's a sacrifice you need to make. There are only two kinds of cheese made in Japan – sliced and grated! lol…

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