Open to Imports

OTA estimates total organic market consumer sales of Japan at about $1.2 billion USD per year.

  • The total market size for organic packaged food and beverages in Japan in 2015 is US$645.2mn, making it the 11th largest market in the world by value.
  • Per capita spending on organic packaged food and beverages in Japan is US$5.1, which ranks as the 20th largest spending per capita in the world.
  • The largest company by sales in organic packaged food and beverages is Artisanal, which maintains 20.6% of total sales; it is followed by Maruanai and Meiraku.
  • Organic packaged food and beverages in Japan will see slow year-on-year growth of close to 0% in 2015. This is much slower than the rest of the Asia Pacific region, which will experience more than 13% year-on-year growth in 2015.
  • Japan maintains a market size for organic packaged food and beverages of US$645.2 million in 2015, which is 1.9% of global category sales
  • Within the Asia Pacific region, only China surpasses Japan in total value sales of organic packaged food and beverages.
  • Despite the large market size, Japan will experience slow forecast growth of sales of organic packaged foods and beverages, at 0.8% from 2015–2020.

QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS

Quick Facts

  • The total market size for organic packaged food and beverages in Japan in 2015 is US$645.2mn, making it the 11th largest market in the world by value.
  • Lackluster economic growth in Japan will hinder growth of premium-priced organic packaged food and beverages.
  • Domestic brand Topvalu’s product line expansion plans will create further category competition while also increasing the visibility of organic products amongst Japanese consumers.
     

Market Trends

Competitive Landscape

  • The organic foods landscape remains very competitive and fragmented due to the fact that major manufactures tend to target mass consumers with standard products, while smaller players offering organic products target a niche market of health-conscious, higher-earning Japanese consumers.
  • In 2014 AEON Group announced plans to double its organic product line under the Topvalu brand. With this expanded product line, the company is able to reduce costs in comparison with other organic brands.
  • Though the competitive landscape is fragmented, top manufacturers that have carved out share of the market include Marusanai Co, Nagoya Seiraku Co, and Nichifutsu.

Prospects and Growth Opportunity

  • Organic packaged food and beverages are expected to see slow growth over the forecast period, and unit prices are expected to rise due to both the devaluation of the yen and the fact that most brand offerings are imported. 
  • Expansion of the Topvalu brand is expected to put pressure on expensive imported varieties over the forecast period, though it will also increase the overall visibility of organic products to Japanese consumers, creating a positive effect on the category overall.
     

General Health & Wellness Trends

General Economic & Demographic Landscape

Economy

  • Japan’s economic growth has been recovering since the destructive earthquakes and tsunamis of 2011 brought it to a halt. The economy has shown positive but slow growth, as real GDP in 2015 rose by 0.7%.  
  • Unemployment remains relatively low and stable, with the labor force expanding in recent years to include more women than ever. Minimum wage has also seen subtle increases. 
  • Despite slow growth, Japan is experiencing improving labor market conditions, continued quantitative easing, a pick-up in exports and inflation, low real interest rates, and corporate tax cuts in recent years, which will help support future economic growth. 

Population demographics: 

  • Japan’s population began consistently decreasing in 2005, with birth rates significantly lower in the last decade. 
  • Japan has the oldest population in the world. In 2014, 26% of the population was 65 or older. 
  • In 2015 Japan had one of the highest life expectancies in the Asia Pacific region: 80.5 years for males and 86.9 for females. 

Income & expenditure: 

  • Japan has one of the highest disposable incomes in the Asia Pacific region, as unemployment continues to fall and more people are bringing home consistent paychecks. 
  • Despite more people having access to wages, income inequality is severe due to the fact that many higher salaried workers are leaving the workforce and being replaced, and outnumbered, by workers who earn less pay.

QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS

Organic packaged food & beverage data

Data type

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

CAGR
(12-15)

CAGR
(15-18)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Health & wellness products consumption

42,480.8

43,276.0

43,438.7

43,879.9

44,232.9

44,697.0

44,982.1

1.1%

0.8%

Organic packaged food and beverages consumption

620.6

625.8

635.3

645.2

651.1

658.8

664.5

1.3%

1.0%

Organic packaged food consumption

424.4

431.6

438.6

446.4

451.3

457.2

461.8

1.7%

1.1%

Organic beverages consumption

196.1

194.2

196.8

198.8

199.8

201.7

202.7

0.5%

0.6%

Organic packaged food and beverages consumption as a % of total health & wellness products consumption

1.5%

1.4%

1.5%

1.5%

1.5%

1.5%

1.5%

-

-

Economic & demographic data

 

Data type

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total population

127.5

127.3

127.1

126.8

126.5

126.0

125.6

% Middle and upper class of total population

41.2%

41.3%

41.1%

41.1%

41.0%

41.0%

41.0%

% Population aged 65+

24.1%

25.1%

26.0%

26.7%

27.4%

27.9%

28.3%

% Population aged 0-14

13.0%

12.9%

12.8%

12.6%

12.5%

12.4%

12.2%

% Population with higher education degrees

32.4%

32.6%

32.9%

33.1%

33.3%

33.5%

33.7%

Average number of children per household

0.4

0.4

0.4

0.4

0.4

0.4

0.4

GDP per capita

30,795.8

31,091.8

31,653.4

32,441.5

32,809.6

33,158.9

33,582.5

Consumer expenditure per capita (US$)

18,147.7

18,458.4

18,679.9

18,648.6

18,800.4

18,828.7

18,990.6

Consumer expenditure per capita on food and non-alcoholic beverages (US$)

2,559.1

2,610.5

2,651.3

2,645.2

2,662.3

2,659.7

2,673.5

 

 

Retailer & urban area data

 

Data category

Rank

Urban Area/retailer

Population 
(mns)

 

 

 

 

Top urban areas by population (2015)

1

Tokyo

37.1

Top urban areas by population (2015)

2

Osaka

19.3

Top urban areas by population (2015)

3

Nagoya

9.1

Top urban areas by population (2015)

4

Fukuoka

5.5

Top urban areas by population (2015)

5

Shizuoka

2.7

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

1

7-Eleven

-

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

2

Lawson

-

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

3

Family Mart

-

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

4

MaxValu

-

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

5

Circle K

-

USDA GATS data

Rank

2015

2014

2013

2012

1

Cauliflower

Cauliflower

Cauliflower

Cauliflower

2

Berries

Grapes

Grapes

Brocolli

3

Grapes

Brocolli

Brocolli

Grapes

4

Tomato Sauce

Celery

Strawberries

Coffee Roast

5

Blueberries

Grapefruit

Tomato Sauce

Strawberries

Policy Information

Government Agency(s)/Competent Authority

Authorized Government Agency(s): 

Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF)

Agency(s) Contact Information: 

1-2-1, Kasumigaseki
Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8950, Japan
Website

Organic Regulations and/or Standards

Name(s) of Regulation and/or Standard: 

Date of Implementation: 

2000

Regulation and/or Standard Scope: 

The standards cover plants, processed foods, livestock feed, and livestock products, as well as transportation, selection, processing, cleaning, storage, packaging, and other post-harvest processes for domestic and imported products.

Imported Products Requirements

Imported Products: 

Importers must be certified. Technical criteria for importers cover facilities, methods for acceptance and storage of imported product, qualifications and number of persons in charge of acceptance and storage of imports and for those in charge of grading labeling, and for attaching grading labels. Japan has approved rules and standards of some countries as equivalent with the Organic JAS system. The equivalent grading system of another country does not mean that it is identical to the Organic JAS system. The integrity of the Organic JAS system is maintained through setting the terms of exports to Japan for crucial differences between both grading systems.

The United States has an Equivalency Agreement with Japan.

 

Certification and Accreditation

Accreditation Method: 

Government

Accreditation: 

MAFF accredits certifiers.
The United States has an Equivalency Agreement with Japan.

Additional Information

Reference Standards: 

Based on Codex Guidelines for the Production, Processing, Labelling and Marketing of Organically Produced Foods

Additional Information: 

Japan is on the EU's third country list.

USDA’s GAIN Report The Japanese Processed Fruit Market-Opportunities and Challenges (2017)
USDA’s GAIN Report An Overview of the Food Labeling Standard (2017)
USDA’s GAIN Report Japan Revises Organic Law Allowing Imported Organic Feed (2017)
USDA’s GAIN Report Japan Change to Country of Origin Labeling Requirements Notified (2017)
Agricultural Trade Office talk: Food, Agriculture, and U.S. Market Prospects: Agriculture in Japan (March 6, 2017)
USDA's GAIN Report Japan Exporter Guide (2016)
USDA's GAIN Report Japan Food Processing Ingredients Food Processing Sector (2016)
USDA's GAIN Report Japan Retail Foods Retail Sector (2016)
USDA's GAIN Report Organic Seminars in Japan (2015)
USDA's GAIN Report Japan Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards - Certification (2016)
USDA's GAIN Report Japan Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards - Narrative (2015) 
USDA's GAIN Report Japanese Organic Market (2013) 

Definitions

Review definitions of terminology included in this website.