Vending Machines’ Business in Japan

by ebazaar 24 September 2009 2 Comments
Food vending machine in Japan (Credit - Bagu)

Food vending machine in Japan (Credit - Bagu)

Japan may be facing a declining birth rate, but not in the number of vending machines available in the country. In just no more than 4 years, there has been an additional of 100,000 more vending machines of all kinds available nationwide in Japan. In 2006, the number of vending machines was roughly 5.4 millions and in the year 2009, the figure has reached 5.5 million. Ratio is about one vending machine for every 20 people living in Japan.

Vending machines are called as ‘Jidou-hanbaiki‘ in Japan. These intelligent machines are providing the Japanese society with a variety of things, which sometimes seems a little too weird for people elsewhere. Nearly all basic necessities and many other non-essentials as well as collectibles and toys vending machines are available in Japan. You can find the normal stuffs like both hot and cold drinks, snacks and candies. But you can also find other stuffs like pot noodles, films, disposable cameras, batteries, phone cards and even eggs available in many city and residential streets. If you go to tech and entertainment districts like Akihabara, you’ll probably see a lot of figurines, comics, and other small gadget vending machines everywhere, especially outside shop lots. Vending machines outside post offices sell stamps and postcards, while those in business hotels sell razors, cup instant noodles, beer, and even underwear. That’s pretty much how things are like.

Vending machine in Japan come in various shape - (Credit:Bo)

Vending machine in Japan come in various shape - (Credit:Bo)

Vending machines are by all means very convenient indeed but the extensive used of vending machines too has risen certain controversy and moral issues, such in the sale of sex orientation items, pornography as well as cigarettes and alcoholic beverages. The 21st century has seen an increasing rate of under age drinking (Well, for your point of information, the Japanese law prohibits sale of alcohol to anyone under 20 years of age), and this was actually a major concern of the Japanese government, as well as leading to a voluntary restriction by alcohol vendors. 70% of vending machines that sells alcoholic beverages has been taken out and restocked with soft drinks and non-alcoholic beverages.

Seeing vending machines selling condoms and other sex aids, porn magazines and comics will be an extraordinarily shocking sight for me, and this kind of stuff might have received an instant protest elsewhere I’m sure. It’s more or less the same with vending machines that sells cigarettes, although that may not be as shocking; wouldn’t it be easy even for kids to obtain these stuffs? It was easy but not anymore lately. There’s a new control system being adopted now to counter this problem – that is the used of certification card for those 20 years old above like Taspo, which will be scanned at certain vending machines that sell the kind of stuffs described previously.

Learn more about Taspo.

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One comment

  1. Commercial refrigerators

    they have been doing great in this field. i read in an article that they are serving fresh hot pizza on vending machines by which i was totally amazed …. Must say they are doing great in this field….


    admin Reply:

    Fresh hot pizza?! Wow…I’ve read somewhere too about vending machines that even sell hot bowl noodles. I was totally amazed too. You’re right, they’re sure going way above creative in this vending machine business thingy. Thanks for visiting!^0^

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