Friday, July 1, 2011

Japan's fake food industry

In Japan displaying hand crafted replica food to entice restaurant goers is a traditional art.

If you think the noodles in the video beneath look tasty - think again. Everything is fake, even the beer. At a Tokyo factory, plastic sample food is the only thing on the menu. All the tasty treats are precisely crafted by the artists to entice people into a restaurant.

Etsuji Isozaki, Manager the company Maiduru explained: "Our catch phrase is: express the taste by colours. For our employees, the most important quality is to understand this. But if they like cooking and eating, that's even better."

The company has around 40 employees - most of them women. They spend hour after hour patiently reproducing the tiniest detail. Some take weeks to make and can sell for up to 4,000 dollars. An expensive, if not so nutritious meal.

Displaying fake dishes to illustrate a menu is a tradition in Japan's restaurants. "When I see a really colourful, mouthwatering dish. It makes me want to go in and eat it." stated Yasuyuki Sasada a driving instructior.

Megumi, a Japanese student stated "Sometimes, the fake food is not the same as the real one you've ordered. So it's good to have a sample."

Some shops are even selling fake food to the public as souvenirs. You can keep it forever, as a reminder of a good meal. Plus, it'll never go off.