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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Cool Japanese Packaging - 2

Above is what looks like a simple box containing some sort of product. And it is. But it's not a simple box on the outside, not a simple product on the inside, and certainly not a simple box on the inside.

This is a box designed by the Japanese firm T-Square Design Associates for their client Nanatsukahara Farms in Shobara-shi, Hiroshima-ken, Japan for their butter cake.

Apparently the whole area is famous for these butter cakes... according to the client: "It looks like normal butter cake, but once you eat it, you can really taste the original buttery taste."

I have no idea what a normal butter cake really looks or tastes like, but it has a couple of my favorite ingredients, namely butter and whatever the hell cake is made out of, so it must be good.
Look at the outside top lid... see that big old number '7'? The first thing you need to know is that the Japanese word for seven is nana... which is also the first part of the farm's name. Okay... that's pretty good, but so what? Unless Ultraman 7 eats these butter cakes, I'm not that impressed.

Okay... but then if you actually take a closer look at the '7' logo... it has a blob of golden yellow at the bottom part of the actual number.... making it look like a drop of butter. Okay... that is nice, though I really am confused as to why the number seven is used at all... yes, it mimics the first half of the farm name... but so what? Is the number 7 actually a part of the farm's name? If so... nice choice. If not, meh. But... I don't have the Japanese kanji symbol to compare it against.

Okay... exterior aside... inside there's that butter cake. I can feel my arteries hardening just from looking at it. Ugh... dying... must... keep.. typing... ... blog... even.......... in ... death throes.

Here's what T-Square had to say: "We approached the project with the concept of 'Surprise and Sensational' butter... and wanted to communicate where the cake is coming from when purchased at different prefectures in Japan.

"There fore, it looks like a 'simple' confectionery box, but once you open it, there is a hint of surprise where the cake is made and coming from."

T-Square wasn't kidding... inside is scenery from the Nanatsukahara Farm... so after you snarf down (eat) the whole butter cake in a few minutes and are wondering just how the heck you are ever going to afford the Lipitor cholesterol drug, you can stare at the empty box and dream of the wonderous land where the butter cake came from and wonder just why they didn't include any cows in the photographic image.

It's still pretty cool packaging, though.

Now... while I can't quite tell what type of trees those are in the photograph - I'm good, but not that good - I can tell you that the Nanatsukahara Farm was well known for the cherry trees and poplar trees planted there, as well as the pastoral scenery... which I suppose is what is represented in the photo just above. From what I understand, the poplar trees - 130 of them - were planted along the 150 meter roadway leading to the farm, and have come to symbolize the Nanatsukahara farm. So there. I guess those are poplar trees in the pastoral scene in the box.

Andrew Joseph

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