Saturday, April 9, 2011

One Piece and Pepsi

Toriko and One Piece were both turned into 3-D anime movie shorts and paired together, under the name "Jump Heroes Film", with a March 19 release. As part of the promotion back several months ago, Pepsi came out with a limited edition set of Pepsi NEX - One Piece 1.5 liter bottles. I noticed these one night at the Summit grocery store, but they only had the labels with the minor guys on them. I wanted either Luffy, or the girls. So, I came back to the store the next day, and ALL of the One Piece bottles were gone. That's when I discovered an interesting fact.

(There's only 5 designs this time.)

Turns out that you can't get 1.5 liter bottles of Pepsi from most of the convenience stores in Japan. They've got 1.5 liter bottles of Coke, and smaller 500 ml bottles of both Coke and Pepsi. But if you want the big bottles of Pepsi, you have to hit certain grocery chains, like Summit. And, recently, there was a newspaper article saying that Pepsi's been steadily losing market share globally. Maybe this explains Pepsi's willingness to come out with weird flavors occasionally - they're either desperate to gain sales any way they can, or they figure they have nothing to lose.

(The photo on the right is in focus, but the one of the left has the better positioning.)

Anyway, after scouring the stores around me in Tokyo, I failed to find the One Piece bottles again, and they didn't even make it to the Jason's discount store, so I'm guessing that they were all snapped up really fast. However, after going down to Kyushu, I found them in a little grocery store near the airport. The store only puts out 4 bottles at a time, and I've seen the Luffy label twice. I'm betting that they have more of the Luffy labels in back, too. Moral of the story? - if you want something that's really popular, trying visiting some of the backwater towns where there's virtually no market.

I would argue that at 228 yen (almost $2.75 USD) per bottle, that they're more than I want to pay just to take pictures for this blog (especially since I normally don't drink soda anymore). On the other hand, Coke is 255 yen for the same size bottle, and it sells better. So, I guess if I was still a cola drinker, I'd really be feeling the pain for buying Coca Cola in Kyushu.

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