All About Japan

Pandemic Drives Vending Machines Boom in Japan

| Tokyo , Gunma

Anyone hungry for cake can buy some from this store in Tokyo 24 hours a day, thanks to the vending machines introduced for safety in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The formula is so successful, the machines now generate 90% of sales. The cake shop is just one example of businesses that are turning to automated dispensers to cope with the lingering effects of the pandemic.

A pizzeria in Gunma Prefecture, north of Tokyo, sells more than 200 bottles of homemade salad dressing per day. The operator says sales are increasing because a growing number of customers prefer eating at home. The eatery has invested in a factory where it plans to produce 40,000 bottles a month.

Nother vending machine in Tochigi Prefecture, north of Tokyo, sells handmade products such as earrings and masks. The machine is operated by a local non-profit organization. It was set up to help designers and creators affected by the cancellation of handicraft markets and other events.

As businesses continue to cope with our new normal, it will be interesting to see what new sales trends develop.