A bacon extravaganza is coming to Japan for the very first time. Say, it isn't so. The organizers of the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival just announced it is partnering with Junior Chamber International Kofu to co-host Japan’s first ever baconfest.
Who better to show Yamanashi, Japan, how to celebrate all things bacon than its sister state, Iowa. After all, as one of U.S. pork’s biggest customer, it is safe to say pork raised in the largest producing state is shipped to Japan.
“Twenty percent of Iowa pork is already sent to Japan. They’re one of the largest importers of Iowa pork,” says Brooks Reynolds, chairman of the Iowa Pork Board and co-founder of the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival. “We just thought why not try to do what we do here in Iowa — over there.”
In a coordinated effort with the U.S. Embassy, Iowa Sister State, Des Moines Sister Cities, Berkwood Farms, CK International Ltd. and valued sponsors, the Japan Bacon Festival will take place in Kofu, the capital city of Yamanashi Prefecture on Nov. 3, Japan Culture Day. Those who attend will get to sample Japanese and American-style bacon.
Reynolds says to jump-start the Japanese event in November they are donating 1,000 pounds of bacon. Investing back in one of your biggest customers is more than a wise business move. It sustains a relationship, strengthening a bond of trust.
In spite of this, the Land of Rising Sun may never be the same after it gets a real taste of American-style bacon. U.S. travelers often report that bacon beyond North America is slimy and tasteless; words you never want to hear when describing food. So, a side-by-side comparison may just win a new batch of bacon lovers for crispy, mouth-watering American bacon.
With the majority of consumers living outside the U.S. borders, think about how high pork belly prices can climb if the world starts craving American-style bacon, covering it in chocolate and topping their ice cream sundae with it.