World of Pepsi

by Kensatsukan Gaijin

Japan is at the forefront of technological innovations all the time, and perhaps no moreso than in global Pepsi technology.  If you rush to Japan soon, you’ll be able to get the newest creation, Strawberry Milk Pepsi.  Suntory calls it "Pink Cola.” It joins the ranks of other limited-time only Pepsi flavors released in Japan, like Ice Cucumber Pepsi, Salty Watermelon Pepsi, and Red Bean Pepsi, among others.  Set to be released on December 9, this is the second time that Japan has seen pink Pepsi, it having been released once before in 2011.  


The reason why there are so many flavors is that food and drink makers in Japan continually roll out a variety of new tastes, some of which are offbeat, in hopes of grabbing consumers’ attention.  Some of these variations include “Red Pepsi,” so-called because of its spicy flavor, “Gold Pepsi” which was ginger-flavored, “Pepsi Ice Cucumber,” “Pepsi Blue Hawaii,” which tasted like pineapple and lemon (and was blue, for some reason), “Pepsi White,” a yogurt flavored drink, “Pepsi Azuki” (like Azuki beans), “Pepsi Shiso” (like the herb shiso), “Pepsi Baobab” (which comes from the Baobab tree, sort of like ginger ale), “Pepsi Strong Shot,” which had extra caffeine (and whose highly carbonated container even had a warning label that recommended waiting 15 seconds after opening the can to take a sip), “Pepsi Salty Watermelon,” “Pepsi Caribbean Gold,” which featured a white sapote flavor, even “Pepsi Mont Blanc,” with a creamy chestnut flavor.  Pepsi’s zero-calorie version in Japan was called Pepsi Nex, and its unsweetened version was called “Pepsi Dry.”  Pepsi Dry with lemon was called “Pepsi Black.”  Pepsi’s energy drink was just called “Pepsi Energy Cola.”  


All of these Pepsi flavors are certainly special, but none so special as “Pepsi Special.”  Pepsi Special was a drink so special that the drink was actually designated as a "food for specified health uses". This means the product is regulated by the Japanese government and has its seal of approval. Pepsi Special actually contained an indigestible form of dextrin, which is used as a dietary fiber supplement and makes it difficult for the body to absorb fat while eating. 


Of course, if you are a fan of the regular, everyday taste of Pepsi, you could also track down a pack of Pepsi Shuwa Shuwa, a special flavor of cheetos in Japan that are pepsi flavored.  They even “fizz” a little when you eat them!