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What Candy Bars Are Considered Good Luck in Japan


When you think of Japan, what comes to mind? Obviously, the land of the rising sun, disciplined people, a clean environment, a good education system, cherry blossom trees and robots. However, candy bars are definitely not something that strikes a chord when you consider Japan. Apart from this, do you know a candy bar is considered good luck in Japan? No? Then read the full article to get the answer.

What Candy Bar Is Considered Good Luck in Japan?

Candies are undoubtedly the favorite food item for a plethora of people to eat. However, chocolates are a huge part of Japan’s culture and some chocolates have specific meanings to them. In Japan, they have a special candy bar that is considered good luck. That delicious, most popular and most preferred candy in Japan is Kit Kat. The unique flavors of Kit Kat include Japanese green tea Kit Kat and shake-flavored Kit Kat. This Kit Kat candy has various consumers worldwide but Japan is the largest consumer of this candy since they believe it as a lucky charm. Approximately 5 million Kit Kat bars are consumed every single day in Japan.

Why is Kit Kat considered good luck in Japan?

The famous chocolate Kit Kat with the captivating slogan ‘Have a break, have a Kit Kat’ is called ‘kitto katto’ in Japanese. This pronunciation sounds identical to a well known old Japanese phrase ‘kitto katsu’. Do you know what ‘kitto katsu’ exactly means? The meaning of this phrase is ‘lucky charm’ or ‘ you will definitely win’.

Due to this deep resemblance between the name of the chocolate candy bar and the Japanese phrase, the brand considered it good luck. Now there is a tradition in Japan that parents give their children Kit Kats as a lucky charm before taking exams or entrance tests, indicating that they are surely going to ace the test with an overwhelming victory.

Nestle contemplated it as a good opportunity to capitalize on their chocolate bar’s marketing as they were also satisfied by this coincidence. Correspondingly, the company brings an excellent idea of selling a box of Kit Kat ‘special exam’ in Japan. You may find it funny, but it became so trending in that period. Even Nestle’s product was covered in the entire press and telecasted on television. Nestle revealed in an interview that they often see an extreme rise in Kit Kat’s sales around January because that is when the Japanese college entrances take place.

Varieties of Kit Kat

Kit Kit is a popular brand that is liked by everyone all over the globe. Although it is well known for its original perfectly stabilized taste of sweet milk chocolate and wafer. Still, there are a number of different Kit Kat flavors.

Kit Kat makers in Japan do not just permit people to wish someone good luck. Perhaps, they are always ready to look over a wide assortment of flavors an individual will surely admire. In Japan, Kit Kats are available in more than 300 variations and flavors which is quite a huge number. These variations are of wafer chocolate with regionally preferred flavors.

One of the most famous packaging sizes of Kit Kats in Japan is Kit Kat mini. This mini pack comprises the chocolate which you can break into two bite-size pieces. From 300 exciting flavors, there are nearly 40 prime flavors of Kit Kat mini which are available throughout the year at all candy shops in Japan and one can find it easily. The other flavors are regional or seasonal.  These 40 core flavored chocolates include:

  • Sake
  • Matcha
  • Wasabi
  • Sweet potato
  • Dark chocolate
  • Strawberry
  • Purple sweet potato
  • Milk chocolate
  • Tokyo banana
  • Plum
  • Ginger
  • Kinako
  • Soybean powder
  • Orange chocolate rum
  • Sakura green tea
  • Cocoa fruit
  • cappuccino

Do you know who created these unique flavors? These lucky unique flavored wafers are created by Yasumasa Takagi. He is an expert pastry chef and worked with the product development teams of Nestle who are always working laboriously to come up with a new and unique assortment of flavors.

Are Kit Kats from Japan?

There is no denying the fact that kit kats are an obsession in Japan. However, you will be amazed to know that this good luck candy did not originate in Japan. Now you will be thinking where did this candy come from? How did it make its way into Japan? So, let’s clear all your doubts. Kit kat first hit the Japanese market in 1973, 50 years after its invention in England by a British confectionery named Rowntree. Today, Kit Kat is owned by a confectionary company named Nestle.

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Kit kat became an adored chocolate in Japan in 2004 after it launched its most popular flavor sweet matcha green tea. As a result, sales rose drastically and soon the company released an assortment of different regional, seasonal and special edition flavors. The surprising part is, in 2014, Kitkat defeated Japan’s number one candy company named Meiji.

How Did Kit Kats Become Popular in Japan?

The second question in your mind was how did Kit Kat become so popular in Japan? So read on further attentively to unwind this mysterious question. The company saw an opportunity and took advantage of the coincidence of identical names of candy and the well-known good luck phrase. Nestle launched a ‘Lucky Charm’ advertising campaign and won the Asian Brand Marketing Effectiveness Award and Cannes Lions Award in 2005. After this success, it launched another good luck marketing campaign in collaboration with the Japan post in 2009. That time they sold limited edition Kit Kat packages that had space to twig a stamp and a beautiful message to encourage dearest ones. This chocolate could be mailed from anywhere in Japan. This campaign was so successful that the packages were sold out within a month.

Where Did This ‘Kit Kat’ Name Come From?

Does this question pop up in your mind ‘why is it called Kit Kat’? ‘Where did this quirky name come from? So here is your answer. Nestle, who is not the real owner of chocolate, said confectionerJoseph Rowtree, the founder of this chocolate coined this famous name and started selling the chocolate treat in 1935. In addition, Nestle disclosed that the name was only a choice for an exclusive box of assortment that made an advent in the 20s and was inspired by 18th-century whig literary club which was entitled in the honor of a man named Christopher Catling or his nickname Kit Cat. This is the source of the most adored treat’s name.


In the end, we can agree that apart from being Japan’s luck charm, Kit kat has been a part of our childhood and is now broadcasted as a sweet escape from the hustles and bustles of this busy adult life.



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