Only a few days have passed since April 1st, when Japan announced that the new era beginning next month would be called the Reiwa Era.

As we reported earlier, Barcelona-based candy maker Papabubble had advertised that it would stake its claim on being the first to sell candy with the Reiwa 令和 kanji a mere 90 minutes after the announcement was made. As you can see from the following video tweeted by PR Times, they not only kept their promise but delivered in 75 minutes. (The candy is available through April 7th in Tokyo at their Daimaru Department Store and Aoyama locations):

But that was only the beginning. All manner of businesses throughout Japan have been busy trying to capitalize on this historic transition to the Reiwa Era. We will surely see many more in the months to come, but here is a small sample of what has already transpired in the first few days since the announcement:


If you want to celebrate the Reiwa Era over dinner, you can head over to Gyoza no Antei 餃子の安亭 in the famous restaurant alley Shinjuku Omoide Yokocho and order a giant plate with gyozas shaped in the form of the kanji characters for Reiwa 令和

Called ドリームジャンボ令和餃子 Dream Jumbo Reiwa Gyoza, the dish comes as a set with a Dream Jumbo lottery ticket and is available until April 26th for 3,150 JPY or 1,575 JPY (incl. tax) if you show a Dream Jumbo lottery ticket. If you order it, either have a huge appetite or come with four friends since it's the equivalent of five standard gyoza plates. Also, there's a limit of three orders per day, so you may want to go early!


We've already seen individual artists get into the act such as Asami Kamioka's beautiful icing Reiwa cookie creation. Naturally, Japanese shops are also racing to be the first to sell everything from cookies, cakes and chocolates commemorating the Reiwa Era.


From April 1st, cupcake shop フェアリーケーキフェア Fairycake Fair was selling a special box of cupcakes called ベイクド令和 Baked Reiwa, featuring this cute pink icing cupcake with gold leaf and the Reiwa kanji written on top:

You can buy the box of ten cupcakes, which also includes a Heisei Era cupcake and a Hinomaru Japanese flag cupcake mixed in with other standard varieties, for 3,000 JPY between now and May 7th at their Tokyo Station Gransta shop (limited to 31 per day).

Baumkuchen Cake

Baumkuchen cake specialists ねんりん屋 Nenrinya are also selling a commemorative Reiwa Era version, simply called "Reiwa." For the first time in the brand's history, they have made a double layered cake, following the traditional Japanese celebratory color scheme of red and white (actually pink and yellow, but close enough). The pink layer is flavored with sakura syrup, to convey a sense of Spring.

You can buy one for 1,188 JPY (tax incl.) until mid May at any of their following stores: Ginza, Tokyo Daimaru Department Store, Seibu Ikebukuro, Sogo Yokohama, JR Tokyo Station, Haneda Airport Terminal 1 and 2, Chiisana Palm Tree in JR Shinagawa Station and Hankyu Umeda in Osaka.


Not all shops are selling their commemorative goods now. As expected, many businesses plan to wait until the official start of the Reiwa Era on May 1st. For example, the Yokohama Grand Intercontinental Hotel has already announced it will sell an elegant commemorative box of chocolates featuring the Reiwa kanji.

Called 新元号「令和」メモリアルショコラ New Era "Reiwa" Memorial Chocolat, the box of three premium chocolates features the celebratory white (sake flavor) and red (yuzu flavor) with the center chocolate (hojicha flavor) printed with the Reiwa kanji. The set will cost 1,134 JPY (inc. tax) and will be available at the hotel's 2nd floor gourmet and souvenir shop Ai Marina until the stock of 50 boxes is sold out.


The earliest Reiwa Era commemoration items were not limited to food. For example, as reported by the Japan Times, precision parts manufacturer Castem Co. in Hiroshima Prefecture began taking orders for commemorative sake cups laser-engraved with the new era's kanji characters merely minutes after the era's name was announced. Everything from commemorative pins and cushions to knives and even software makers are getting into the Reiwa celebratory mood.


In an obvious choice for a commemorative product, Osaka-based Heso Productions immediately came out with metal pins emblazoned with the Reiwa kanji:

The pins are on sale for 300 JPY (excl. tax), along with other Reiwa commemorative goods such as acrylic key chains and chocolates, at the following Kansai area locations: Entree Marche Shin-Osaka Chuoguchi, Entree Marche Shin Kobe, Yoshimoto Omiyagemon Yokocho Namba Grand Kagetsu, Kuidaore, Kokomoyotteya Shinsekai.


Celebrating the end of the Heisei Era and the beginning of the Reiwa Era, FuRyu Corporation is selling this commemorative cushion with the two era's names printed on each side.

The cushion, called 「平成&新元号」Heisei & Shin-Gengo (Heisei and New Era) will be available from the fourth week of April at amusement centers throughout Japan. Pricing details are currently unavailable.

Kitchen knife

If you'd like to carve out a new path for yourself in the Reiwa Era, you may be interested in a commemorative kitchen knife with the Reiwa kanji printed on it.

Offered by the Kai Corporation, famous for razor blades and cutter knives, this special limited edition version of their flagship "Seki Sonroku" series of santoku bōchō (general purpose) kitchen knives is subtly engraved with Reiwa in Japanese and English. Available for reservations now online while supplies last (lot of 100), the commemorative edition knife costs 12,000 JPY (excl. tax).


In addition to companies selling products that commemorate the new era, there are also very practically motivated products responding to Japanese business needs. For example, DynaComware's popular DynaFont series is getting an update to include the Reiwa Era two-kanji combination glyph for use in printing and displaying dates in official documents.

Details on the update available for the DynaFont series can be found here (in Japanese).

We can be certain that more goods and services will be announced in the days and weeks to come as the Heisei Era winds down and the Reiwa Era begins. It will be interesting to see what new and unusual items will emerge!

By - Ben K.