Happy Valentine’s Day! in Japan.

In Japan, we have a custom that women give chocolates to men on Valentine’s day.

No chocolate for women?? I guess this is what you think now.

Well, we have “White Day (March 14th)” which women get sweets from men.
You got chocolates from Japanese women?! Be prepared to return them some gifts on March 14th yo!! Don’t forget that!!

Anyway, on Valentine’s day, women give presents (mostly chocolates) to men in Japan.

How Valentine’s Day became an occasion for women to give men chocolate?

In 1936, a sweet shop Morozoff in Kobe started advertising Valentine’s chocolate for couple to give each other a chocolate, but this didn’t stick to Japanese culture.

In 1958, Mary Chocolate Co.,Ltd started sell chocolate at the department on Valentine’s day. Valentine’s day was not popular for Japanese, so the company just sold 3 chocolates on the day…
Next year, the owner was thinking about how he is going to sell chocolate on Valentine’s day… One kiss scene from the movie “For Whom the Bell Tolls” gave him an idea. How a woman approached a man in the movie was totally different from Japanese style…

On Valentine’s day in 1959, he made heart-shaped chocolate with giving an opportunity to put name on it. This attracted women, and they started buying chocolate which has her and guy’s name on it. The company sold hundreds of chocolates on the Valentine’s day. This made next year’s Valentine’s day different. Media started pushing women’s back, saying “Woman can ask Man on a date!” , “Let’s tell man your feelings!” , and also it said “now is the time to change the stereotypical image of men’s and women’s roles”.

This is how Japanese valentine’s day started here.



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