Convenience Stores

There are a lot of vegan and possibly vegan snacks in convenience stores, but it’s harder to find main dishes and savory foods. You probably shouldn’t waste your time staring at the bento, fried food, oden, and bread/pastry sections.

There is an offshoot of the Lawson chain of convenience stores called Natural Lawson. Although a few products from Natural Lawson can be found in regular Lawson stores, it’s worth it to go to Natural Lawson if there are any near you. Natural Lawson stores are currently located in the following areas: Chiba Prefecture, Saitama Prefecture, Kanagawa Prefecture, and Tokyo. They carry a wider selection of products for vegans than any other convenience store. Click here to see some of the  products you can find at Natural Lawson stores.

Below are some of the vegan foods we have found which you can use as a general guide. The products available at a particular store will vary according to location and season. If we are aware that a product at a certain store is not vegan, we have noted this.

Some foods contain flavouring and emulsifiers which may be animal-derived or sugar that may be bone-char processed. We have marked below wherever we have information on how these ingredients were made.

Each major chain of convenience stores also has a website where you can find information in Japanese about its products, including allergen information about the unpackaged food it sells (e.g. fried food). Some of the pictures below are from the convenience store websites.

Unfortunately, due to labeling laws in Japan, it’s possible for foods to contain small amounts of fish powder and other ingredients for flavoring without being written on the label if the amount is small enough. This can sometimes be marked as その他, “sono ta,” meaning “other.” Also, the convenience stores can change the ingredients of their own items like rice balls and steamed buns at any time without notice, and the new ingredients won’t necessarily be noted on the label if the amounts are small.

It seems that salt onigiri and ume (pickled plum) onigiri are the most likely to be vegan, whereas kombu (seaweed) is likely to contain fish powder to flavor the kombu. However, some ume onigiri do have katsuo (skipjack tuna fish stock) used to flavor the ume and it’s been reported that some salt onigiri also contain fish stock.

Some information about onigiri courtesy of Vegana No Japão (Portuguese).

RICE BALLS (ONIGIRI)

Current list of rice balls confirmed NOT to have animal ingredients:

7/11:
• Salt onigiri (銀しゃりむすび塩むすび)
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There is also another version of this product in some 7-11 stores that says on the front of the package it uses kombu dashi/昆布だし. 7-11 stated in an email that it uses kombu dashi and does not use animal ingredients and that this product in their stores does not contain animal ingredients. However the mail included the sentence なお、原材料について全てを遡っての確認は出来ておりません。さらに、使用原材料は断りなく変わります。From autotranslate: In addition, it is not possible to check retrospectively everything about raw materials. Furthermore, the raw materials used will change without notice.

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Family Mart:
• Ume/pickled plum (手巻 紀州南高梅)
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Lawson:
• Niigata Salted Koshihikari Rice Ball (新潟コシヒカリおにぎり 塩にぎり)
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• Ume/pickled plum (紀州南高梅)

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Current list of onigiri confirmed TO have animal ingredients:

7/11:
Their rice balls vary in ingredients by region. For the Aichi region:
• Pickled plum/ume (手巻 おにぎり熟成仕立て紀州南高梅たたき梅): contains katsuo dashi (skipjack tuna powdered stock). 

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• Kombu seaweed (手巻おにぎり二段階仕込み日高昆布): contains katsuo dashi (skipjack tuna powdered stock)

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Family Mart:
• Kombu seaweed (手巻 北海道産昆布): contains animal products

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Lawson:
• Kombu (日高昆布): Contains katsuo dashi (skipjack tuna powdered stock) and scallops.

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Unconfirmed:

Daily Yamazaki:
Their past item, pickled plum/ ume (九州産たたき梅), was confirmed NOT to have animal ingredients. It appears to have been replaced with another, similar item called the pickled plum/ume (紀州南高梅) (photo below). We have not checked with the manufacturer if this one has off-label animal ingredients or not.

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Daily Yamazaki:
Their previous item, seaweed/ kombu (日高昆布), was confirmed TO have contained animal ingredients, so it was not vegan.  The label says “新発売/shinhatsubai,” meaning “now on sale,” but the item name is the same as before. It’s likely that this new version still has animal ingredients, but we have not contacted the manufacturer to confirm.

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Mini Stop:

Their previous item, Ume/pickled plum (おにぎり (紀州梅)), was confirmed NOT to have contained animal ingredients. It appears to have been replaced with another item, the Kishu Nanko Plum onigiri (紀州南高梅) (photo below). We have not checked with the manufacturer if this one has off-label animal ingredients or not.

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Mini Stop:

Their previous item, kombu with shiso (おにぎり北海道産昆布 (しそ)), was confirmed NOT to have contained animal ingredients. It appears to have been replaced with another item, the Hidaka Kombu Kelp onigiri (日高昆布) (photo below). We have not checked with the manufacturer if this one has off-label animal ingredients or not.

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SUSHI

INARI ZUSHI

Inari zushi (rice in a tofu pocket) is often available in convenience stores. Unfortunately, people who contacted them to inquire found that all the major convenience stores use katsuo dashi (powdered skipjack fish dashi) to flavor the tofu wrap of their inari zushi. It’s not listed in the ingredients or is listed as an ingredient like その他 (“sono ta,” meaning “other”).

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FERMENTED SOY BEAN (NATTO) ROLL

Natto bacteria, which is used to ferment natto beans, is grown on plant matter, fish, or gelatin in Japan. So, animal parts can be used in the production, even though this won’t be written on the label.

 

natto-roll-contains-bonito-711

Noodles

You can buy ready to eat soba (buckwheat noodles – on the left hand side below) and udon (wheat noodles – on the right hand side below) in Japanese convenience stores. These noodles are usually vegan; just check for egg white (卵白).

The dipping sauce that comes with the noodles is made with fish sauce as standard. You can replace the sauce with soy sauce. Soy sauce may be available at the convenience store counter, but it can be useful to carry your own with you. You can buy very small bottles of soy sauce at supermarkets and some convenience stores.

buckwheat-noodles-family-mart  udon-711

Here are a few photos of some soy sauce in small 100ml bottles that can be found in convenience stores:

• Kikkoman Special Reduced Salt Soy Sauce/キッコーマン 特選丸大豆減塩しょうゆ. Ingredients: Soybeans (not genetically modified), wheat, salt/alcohol, acidulant, vitamin B1.

Product contains wheat and soybeans.

Under pressure from PETA, Kikkoman agreed to stop animal testing as of 2015.

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• Kikkoman Special Soy Sauce/キッコーマン 特選丸大豆しょうゆ. Ingredients: Soybeans (US) (not genetically modified), wheat, salt.

Product contains wheat and soybeans.

Under pressure from PETA, Kikkoman agreed to stop animal testing as of 2015.

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Family Mart has pre-packaged noodle-shaped tofu with sesame sauce. The amino acids in the product are confirmed vegan, however, the manufacturer could not confirm if the sugar used in the product was bone char processed or not.

Be careful to get the product in the red-orange package with sesame tsuyu included, and not one in the blue package with fish included or the green package with egg and fish included. 

Tofu Somen Style with Sesame Tsuyu Sauce/豆腐そうめん風 胡麻つゆ付き. Ingredients: 【Noodle-shaped tofu】 Soybean (USA, Canada), starch components, salt/paste materials (processed starch, sodium alginate, polysaccharide thickener), coagulant (calcium chloride, magnesium chloride) (Contains soybeans as part of ingredients.)【Attached Sauce Packet】  Sugar, soy sauce, salt, sesame seed paste, sesame oil, yeast extract / seasoning (amino acid etc), thickener (processed starch), coloring (caramel), flavouring. (Includes wheat, sesame and soybeans as part of ingredients.) Manufactured on equipment that also processes eggs.

Roasted sesame was used to create the sauce. The products are meant to be eaten cold, without cooking. Open the noodle container and throw out the water, then add the sauce to the noodles and eat. 

This product has recently been repackaged. A photo of the old package is shown on the left, and a photo of the new package is shown on the right. Photo on right from website.

20181121_233342 - copy    goma sauce tofu noodles new package

Tofu Somen Style with Mentsuyu Sauce/豆腐そうめん風 麺つゆ付き contains fish in the sauce, as is typical for mentsuyu not made in a vegan restaurant.

The package has been changed recently. The old packaging is shown on the left, and the new packaging is shown on the right. Photo on the right from website.

20181121_233327 - copy    katsuo tofu noodles new package

Tofu Somen Style with Egg/玉子とうふそうめん風 is not vegan as it contains fish and egg.

Photo from website.

egg tofu noodles new package

SALAD

Vegan salads are available at most convenience stores, however you should check the salad carefully before you buy it because there are often things like small fish, meat or egg included in the salad. You also need to be careful with the dressing. It’s difficult to find vegan dressing in convenience store salads/sachets and restaurants in Japan, but supermarkets do have a good selection of possibly vegan choices. It can be a good idea to carry your own salad dressing with you. Choose something that does not need refrigeration, such as balsamic vinegar.

salad-family-mart  salad-2-family-mart

Many convenience stores also sell bags of salad and whole tomatoes, if you would like to make the salad yourself.

Lawson:

This salad does not come with dressing (Dressing sold separately/ドレッシング別売り).

• Corn Salad/シャキッと コーンサラダ. Ingredients: Cabbage (domestically grown), corn (America), carrots (domestically grown), leaf lettuce (domestically grown), red cabbage (domestically grown).

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Family Mart’s Japanese-Style Dressing/和風ドレッシング and Japanese-Style Low-Salt Dressing/減塩和風ドレッシング appear to possibly be vegan. They are available in single-size serving packets near the salads. The other single-serving dressing packets at Family Mart are not vegan.

• Family Mart Japanese-Style Dressing/ファミリーマート 和風ドレッシング. Ingredients: Sugar, vegetable fats and oils, soy sauce, brewed vinegar, onion, amino acids etc., salt, roasted onion paste, dried red pepper/seasoning (amino acids etc.), polysaccharide thickener, spice extract, flavourings. (Product contains wheat and soy.)

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• Family Mart Japanese-Style Low-Salt Dressing/ファミリーマート 減塩和風ドレッシング. Ingredients: Vegetable fats and oils (contains soy), sugars (sugar, high-fructose corn syrup), brewed vinegar, soy sauce (contains wheat), processed soy sauce product (pure brew soy sauce), dried onion chips, rice fermented seasoning, processed olive product, salt, roasted onion, red bell pepper/seasoning, inorganic salt etc., thickener (xanthan), polyglutamic acid, iron gluconate. Product contains wheat and soy.

20190128_205538    20190128_205602

Lawson:

Although this single-serving size dressing is meant for chicken salad, and there is a picture of chicken on the package, it may be vegan according to the ingredient list.

• Sauce for Salad Chicken/サラダチキン(よだれ鶏用ソース). Ingredients: Vegetable oils and fats (domestically processed), soy sauce, brewed vinegar, high-fructose corn syrup, sesame, rice fermented seasoning, sugar, ginger, peanuts, salt, garlic paste, spices, yeast extract powder/seasoning (amino acids, etc.), thickener (xanthan gum), spice extract. (Product contains wheat, peanuts, sesame, and soybeans.)

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None of the individual dressing packets near the salads at 7-11 or Natural Lawson are currently vegan.

Some stores also have a cup with things like carrot, cucumber and dip. The dip is not vegan at any of the convenience stores.

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FRIED POTATO

Fried potatoes in the hot foods section of the convenience store, by the register, are a ‘maybe’. According to the allergy information on the 7-11 website theirs look ok, but as always the oil and seasoning used may be an issue.

The 7-11 fried potatoes have an allergy warning for wheat and soy.

The Family Mart fried potatoes come with your choice of seasoning, 明太マヨソース/Alaska pollack mayonnaise sauce, トマトケチャップ,/tomato ketchup, サラダエレガンスシーズニング/salad elegance seasoning, and リアルソルトシーズニング/real salt seasoning. The Alaska pollack mayonnaise sauce is not vegan, and it’s likely the salad elegance seasoning is not either. The tomato ketchup and real salt seasoning may be vegan, but the ingredients are not listed on the website.

Note that Family Mart fried potatoes are fried in palm oil.

fried-potato-family-mart

There are also frozen french fries that are meant to be microwaved as-is in the package. Some examples are shown below.

Family Mart:

• Mom’s Dining Room French Fries/お母さんの食堂フライドポテト. Ingredients: Potatoes, vegetable oil, salt, glucose/sodium pyrophosphate. (Product contains soy.)

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Lawson:

• Lawson Select French Fries/ローソンセレクトフライドポテトIngredients: Potatoes, vegetable oil, dextrin, salt, rice flour, starch, glucose/modified starch, leavening agent, thickener (xanthan gum), carotenoid pigment. 

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• 7-11 Shoestring French Fries/ 細切りフライドポテト. Ingredients: Potatoes, vegetable oil, glucose/sodium pyrophosphate. (Product contains wheat.)

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EDAMAME

These salted young soy beans in the pod are available in most convenience stores, but the best bets are 7-11 and Family Mart.

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FOOD TO MAKE A MEAL

If you are able to cook for yourself while you are in Japan it is handy to know that you can buy the ingredients to make a basic vegan meal – vegetables, tofu and cooked rice – at a convenience store! There are often bags of cut vegetables as well as whole vegetables like potatoes, carrots and eggplants. You can also find packaged cooked vegetables like sweet potato and pumpkin. Note the packaged pumpkin at 7-11 contains dashi and egg, so is not vegan.

Family Mart:

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NewDays:

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FRUIT

Many convenience stores sell a good range of fruit, including bananas, frozen blueberries, frozen mango, kiwifruit and pineapple. Some is cut and packaged, some is dried, while some is whole.

Family Mart:

Frozen pineapple, frozen apple mango, frozen mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries and raspberries), frozen whole mandarin, frozen blueberries.

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The same frozen mandarins in the photo above are also available in boxes in various convenience stores, especially in summer.

• Hatchando Peeled Mandarin/八ちゃん堂 むかんみかん. Ingredients: Mandarins (domestically grown).

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7/11:

Frozen mixed fruits, pineapple stick, oranges, grapes, apple mango, strawberries, blueberries, grapefruit, and golden pineapple.

The mixed fruit on the top left contain banana, mango, pineapple/antioxidant (Vitamin C). The strawberries, 果実そのままいちご, contain just strawberries.

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• Just Melon/果実そのままメロン. Ingredient: Melon.

melon    melon back

Lawson:

Kracie Frozen Mandarins/Kracie クラシエ 冷凍みかんむいちゃいました. Ingredients: Mandarin flesh, sugar, acidity regulator, stabilizing agent (polysaccharide thickener), flavouring.

Only available in convenience stores. This low-calorie frozen confection using whole fruits has 30-36 calories per bag.

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Some convenience stores also carry sliced apples. One widely available product is called:

• Apple Sweets/アップルスイーツ. Ingredients: Apples (grown in Japan), trehalose, antioxidant (Vitamin C), calcium carbonate.

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Mini Stop:

 Topvalu Delicious As-Is Sliced Apples/トップバリュ おいしさそのままカっとりんご. Ingredients: Apples/trehalose, antioxidant (vitamin C), calcium carbonate.

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Family Mart:

• Tsugaru Apples/津軽りんご. Ingredients: Apples (Aomori-grown), salt/antioxidant (vitamin C), pH stabilizer.

Uses Tsugaru Apples from Aomori Prefecture.

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7/11:

• 7-11 Peeled apple/皮むきりんご Ingredients: Apple, maltose, salt/antioxidant (vitamin C)

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7-11 also carry a line of cut fruits, including kiwi, pineapple, white peach and mikan. The white peach and mikan include flavourings.

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7 Premium Peeled Apple/セブンプレミアム 皮むきりんご. Ingredients: Apple, maltose, salt, antioxidant (vitamin C). Product contains apples. 

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•  7 Premium Pineapple/セブンプレミアム パイナップル. Ingredient: Pineapple.

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Newdays:

These tasty dried apples with sweetener are a light snack.

• Apple Chips from Aomori/青森のりんごちっぷす. Ingredients: Apples (grown in Aomori), vegetable oil, maltotriose syrup.

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There are sweetened fruits in a cup available in many convenience stores like Mini Stop and Family Mart:

• Vita Aloe & Nata de Coco/Vita アロエ&ナタデココ. Ingredients: Aloe vera, concentrated pineapple syrup, nata de coco/citric acid, antioxidant (vitamin C), flavouring.

Product from Thailand. Long shelf life.

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• Vita Red Grapefruit/Vita レッドグレープフルーツ. Ingredients: Grapefruit, sugar, antioxidant (vitamin C), preservatives (potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate).

Product of Mexico. Uses red grapefruit grown in an area commonly called the Citrus Belt, spanning the north and south of Mexico.

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Most convenience stores in Japan should have fresh bananas.

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NUTS

Most convenience stores have a good selection of nuts, for example peanuts, cashews, almonds, pistachios, walnuts and chestnuts. Check the package to make sure you are just buying nuts, as sometimes nuts are sold mixed with small dried fish and other non-vegan ingredients.

In Japan, “butter peanuts” can sometimes mean that butter made from cow’s milk was added as an ingredient, and sometimes just seems to be referring to a type of peanut, with vegetable oil used in place of dairy. Check the label carefully before buying.

Peanuts will generally be the cheapest type of nut available.

7-11:

• Ton’s Brand Almonds & Cashew Nuts/アーモンド&カシューナッツ. Ingredients: Almonds (from U.S.A.), cashew nuts (from India), vegetable fats and oils, salt.

Manufactured in the same facility as items containing wheat, shrimp, peanuts, and other ingredients.

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• 7/11 Butter Peanuts/7-11こだわりのバタピー are not vegan as they have butter oil/バターオイル.

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• 7/11 Unglazed Mixed Nuts/素焼きミックスナッツ. Ingredients: Almonds (U.S.A.), cashew nuts (India), walnuts (U.S.A.), macadamia nuts (Australia).

Manufactured in the same facility as items containing dairy, wheat and peanuts.

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Lawson:

These Raw Sugar Taste Mixed Nuts have Natural Lawson branding on the package.

• Raw Sugar Taste Mixed Nuts/黒糖ナッツ&ナッツ アーモンド・くるみ. Ingredients: Brown sugar almonds (almonds from Australia, processed brown sugar, Japanese brown sugar syrup, salt), brown sugar walnuts  (walnuts from America, processed brown sugar, Japanese brown sugar syrup, salt). Product contains walnuts.

Uses kuromitsu and kokuto. Contains 8.9 grams of carbohydrates and  2.9 g of dietary fiber in one bag.

Processed in the same facilities as products containing peanuts, wheat, dairy, and shrimp.

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Lawson also sells soy-sauce flavored crackers mixed with peanuts.

• Cubic Rice Crackers and Peanut mix/粒もちピーナッツ uses amino acids from plants, according to Lawson. It is confirmed to use sugar that has not been whitened using the bone char method.

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CHIPS

Daily Yamazaki:

• Ryomi 100 Sen Potato Chips, Lightly Salted/良味100選 ポテトチップスうすしお味. Ingredients: Potatoes (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt, protein hydrolyzate (contains soybeans)/seasoning (amino acids, etc.)

Processed on shared equipment with items containing egg, dairy, and wheat.

These are potentially vegan. Since protein hydrolyzate can be made from animal or plant sources, it’s unclear whether only soy/vegetable protein hydrolyzate was used to make these chips.

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Family Mart:

• Lightly Salted Potato Chips with Two Kinds of Salt/ ファミリーマート ポテトチップス2種のうすしお味. Ingredients: Potatoes (non-genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt (60% rock salt from France, 40% Setouchi sea salt), dextrin, sugar, corn starch, seasoning (amino acids, etc.).

100% domestically grown potatoes used.

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• Family Mart Potato Sticks, Lightly Salted/ファミリーマート じゃかスティックあっさりうま塩味.Ingredients: Potato powder (not genetically modified), starch, vegetable oil, wheat flour, salt, kombu seaweed extract powder, dextrin, sugar/processed starch, seasoning (amino acids, etc.), calcium carbonate.

Manufactured on common equipment with products containing egg, dairy, crab, and shrimp.

Made in collaboration with Calbee.

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• Family Mart Strong Laver & Salt Potato Chips/ファミリーマート ポテトチップス濃いめのり塩. Ingredients: Potatoes (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt, nori, sea lettuce, red pepper, seasoning (amino acids, etc.).

Both kinds of seaweed and the salt are domestically produced.

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•  Family Mart Wave-Shaped Thick-Cut Potato Chips with Sea Salt from Australia/波型厚切りポテトチップ 天日塩100%. Ingredients: Potatoes (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt (100% sea salt from Australia), yeast extract powder, dextrin/seasoning (amino acids, etc.), flavouring.

Made on the same equipment as products containing shrimp, crab, wheat, egg, and dairy.

Made in collaboration with Calbee.

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Lawson:

The following product may be vegan, depending on what the hydrolyzed protein is made out of.

• Calbee Sapporo Light Texture Vegetable Sticks/カルビー サッポロポテトつぶつぶベジタブル. Ingredients: Wheat, vegetable oil, Irish Cobbler potatoes (not genetically modified), potato starch, dehydrated potatoes, corn starch, sugar, spinach, salt, top-grade rice flour made from non-glutinous rice, carrot, bell pepper, kabocha squash powder, tomato paste, onion powder, red bell pepper paste, red beet powder, hydrolyzed protein/ seasoning (amino acid etc.), trehalose, pH adjusting agent, sweetener (licorice). (Product contains wheat.)

Manufactured in the same factory as items containing egg, dairy, shrimp, and crab.

Stick-shaped snacks. Includes 7 kinds of vegetables.

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Fukagawa Oil &Fat Company, Ltd. Hokkaido Potato Chips, Salt Taste/深川油脂工業 北海道ポテトチップス うす塩味. Ingredients: Domestically produced non-gmo potatoes, vegetable fats & oils, salt.

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• Lawson Potato Chips Lightly Salted Flavor/ローソン 厚切りザクッとポテトうすしお味. Ingredients: Potatoes (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt, yeast extract powder, dextrin/seasoning (amino acids, etc.), flavouring.

Made in the same factory as items containing eggs, dairy, wheat, shrimp, and crab.

Made in collaboration with Calbee. Made with four kinds of salt: Australian sun-dried salt, American rock salt, Sicilian rock salt, and sea salt from Oshima island in Japan.

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Mini Stop:

The following product may be vegan, depending on what the hydrolyzed protein is made out of.

• Mini Stop Calbee Sapporo Potato Speckled Vegetables/Mini Stop カルビー サッポロポテトつぶつぶベジタブル. Ingredients: Wheat, vegetable oil, Irish Cobbler potatoes (not genetically modified), potato starch, dehydrated potatoes, corn starch, sugar, spinach, salt, top-grade rice flour made from non-glutinous rice, carrot, bell pepper, kabocha squash powder, tomato paste, onion powder, red bell pepper paste, red beet powder, hydrolyzed protein/ seasoning (amino acid etc.), trehalose, pH adjusting agent, sweetener (licorice). (Product contains wheat.)

Manufactured in the same production process as items containing egg, dairy, shrimp, and crab.

Stick-shaped snacks. Includes 7 kinds of vegetables.

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• Mini Stop Lightly Salted Potato Chips/Mini Stop ポテトチップスうすしお味. Ingredients: Potatoes (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt, dextrin, sugar, seasoning (amino acids, etc.)

This product is made in a plant that also processes items including egg, dairy, wheat, shrimp, and crab (of the top 7 allergens).

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Mini Stop Salt Only Tortilla Chips/Mini Stop 塩のみで味付けしたトルティアチップス. Ingredients: Corn (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt.

This product is made in a plant that also processes items including egg, milk, wheat, shrimp, and crab (of the top 7 allergens).

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• Mini Stop Strong Laver & Salt Potato Chips/Mini Stop 濃いめのり塩. Ingredients: Potatoes (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt, nori, sea lettuce, red pepper, seasoning (amino acids, etc.).

Out of the top 7 allergens, this product was made in the same factory as items containing five of them: egg, milk, wheat, shrimp, and crab.

There is also a sentence saying the nori and sea lettuce are harvested using a fishing method where shrimp and crab are mixed together with the nori and sea lettuce.

Both kinds of seaweeds and the salt are domestically produced. Product appears to be made in collaboration with Koikeya.

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Mini Stop convenience store also sells this product with its own branding on it.

• Mini Stop Tohato Poteco, Lightly Salted/東ハト ポテコ・うすしお味. Ingredients: Dehydrated potato (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt/processed starch, seasoning (amino acids, etc.), antioxidant (vitamin E).

Manufactured on common equipment with items containing: egg, dairy, wheat, peanuts, shrimp, and crab.

Ring-shaped potato snacks. 15 percent of the salt used is from Okinawa Prefecture.

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Natural Lawson (and Lawson):

The following chips with Natural Lawson branding on the package are available in both Natural Lawson and Lawson convenience stores. They don’t use sugar or salt and let you taste the natural sweetness of the vegetables.

Natural Lawson Calbee Vegips Fried Yam, Lotus Root and Sweet Potato/ベジップス3種の根菜 長いも・れんこん・さつまいもIngredients: lotus root, yam, sweet potato, vegetable oil.

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• Natural Lawson Calbee Vegips Onion, Squash and Potato/ベジップス たまねぎ かぼちゃ じゃがいも. Ingredients: Potato (not genetically modified), pumpkin, onion, vegetable oil/antioxidant (vitamin C).

These chips don’t use sugar or salt and let you taste the natural sweetness of the vegetables.

Made in a factory that also handles items containing wheat, egg, dairy, shrimp, and crab.

Limited-edition flavor.

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Natural Lawson Calbee Vegips Sweet Potato Carrot Pumpkin/ベジップスさつまいもにんじんかぼちゃ. Ingredients: Sweet potatoes, carrot, pumpkin, vegetable oil.

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• Natural Lawson Potato Chips fried in Olive Oil/オリーブオイルで揚げたポテトチップス. Ingredients: Potato (not genetically modified), olive oil, salt (100% Italian sun-dried salt used).

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Natural Lawson Sweet Potato Chips/種子島産安納芋チップス. Ingredients: Sweet potato (100% annou imo from Tanegashima), vegetable oil.

These sweet potato chips use “annou imo,” a special type of potato with a high sugar content and orange-hued flesh,  which is grown on Tanegashima, an island located to the south of Kyushu.

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7-11:

• 7-11 Salt potato chips (with salt from Ishigaki island)/7-11石垣の塩で味付け厚切りポテト  Ingredients: potatoes (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt (100% salt from Ishigaki island used), corn starch, yeast extract powder, kombu powder.

7-11’s customer service has stated that they don’t know if their fresh products like anman and rice balls have small amounts of animal products since they are made in different locations across the country (with the exception of the salt onigiri, which is animal-ingredient free). It isn’t clear if their packaged items like chips are the same.

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• 7-11 Lightly Salted Potato Chips/7-11 うま味広がるうましお味ポテトチップス. Ingredients: Potatoes (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt, kombu seaweed extract powder, yeast extract powder/seasoning (amino acids, etc.)

Manufactured in the same factory as items containing egg, dairy, wheat, shrimp, and crab.

Salt is 100% sea salt from Naruto, Shikoku.

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 YBC Chip Star Lightly Salted/YBC チップスターうすしお味. Ingredients: Potato flakes, vegetable fats and oils, salt/emulsifier, seasoning (amino acids etc).

Manufactured on common equipment with items containing egg, milk, wheat, shrimp, and crab.

As of 2017, a blog reader reported that the company confirmed this product contains no animal ingredients, meaning the emulsifier and amino acids are not animal-based.

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• YBC Chip Star Salted Laver/YBC チップスターのりしお味. Ingredients: Potato flakes, vegetable fats and oils, nori, salt/emulsifier, seasoning (amino acids, etc.)

Manufactured on common equipment with products containing egg, milk, wheat, shrimp, and crab.

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POPCORN

Family Mart:

• Crispy Fluffy Popcorn with Two Kinds of Salt/ふんわりポープコーン2種のあっさりしお味. Ingredients: Corn (non-genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt.

Two kinds of salt are used, Shimamasu from Okinawa and Setouchi sea salt.

Not available in some parts of the Tokai region.

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Mini Stop:

• Mini Stop Everyday Treats Salted Popcorn/Mini Stop ポップコーンしお味. Ingredients: Corn (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt.

Products containing shrimp, crab, wheat, egg, and milk are also processed in the same factory.

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SWEET POTATO 

Lawson:

Bite-size Roasted Sweet Potato/ひとくち焼きいも. Ingredients: Sweet potatoes, sugar.

Preservatives and colorings are not used.

Uses red Azuma sweet potatoes from Ibaraki Prefecture, an older variety of sweet potato that’s cultivated for its sweetness and aroma, which is said to be chestnut-like.

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Calbee Osatsubee/カルビー おさつビー. Ingredients: Sweet potatoes, vegetable oil, antioxidant (vitamin C).

Manufactured on the same equipment as items containing egg, dairy, wheat, shrimp, and crab.

Sweet and crispy sweet potato sticks.

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Also at Lawson, these sweet potato sticks with Natural Lawson branding on the package are very filling.

• Organically cultivated dried potato stick/有機栽培の干し芋スティック. Ingredients: Organically cultivated sweet potato (satsumaimo).

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PICKLED PLUM SNACKS

Lawson:

• Sheet Shaped Pickled Plum/梅干しシート. Ingredients: Plum, sugars (sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, glucose), salt/seasonings (amino acids, etc.), sweeteners (aspartame, phenylalanine, stevia), coloring (anthocyanin), acidity regulator.

Manufactured in a factory along with products containing wheat, milk, soybeans, squid, sesame, apple, and peach.

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COOKIES

Morinaga, the largest confectionary company in Japan with over a 100-year history, has a line of macrobiotic biscuits called Macrobiha. They are currently available in two flavors, Cocoa & Nuts and Fruit & Granola. They are carried in many of the major convenience store chains as well as some drugstores and grocery stores. These biscuits use no animal ingredients or white sugar.

Per an article in LiveKindly in November 2018, Morinaga has agreed to cease all animal testing not required by law.

The portion of the website showing the Macrobiha biscuits is here.

• Morinaga Macrobiha Cocoa and Nuts/Morinaga マクロビ派カカオナッツ. Ingredients: Sugar (made from sugar beets), flour, oat flakes, edible rapeseed oil, almonds, brown rice flakes, cocoa powder, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, pumpkin seeds, salt/vanilla flavour.

Product contains wheat.

Processed on the same equipment as items containing egg and milk.

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• Morinaga Macrobiha Fruit & Granola/Morinaga マクロビ派 フルーツグラノーラ. Ingredients: Oat flakes, edible rapeseed oil, sugar (made from sugar beets), wheat flour, whole grain wheat flour, dried cranberry with juice added (cranberry, concentrated apple juice, edible sunflower oil), brown rice flakes, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, salt/vanilla flavour.

Product contains wheat and apples.

Processed on the same equipment as items containing egg and milk.

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Nuts & Salt is the hardest of the three flavours to find. It seems to occasionally turn up at Family Mart convenience stores. It has been confirmed to contain no animal ingredients, although it is processed on the same equipment as products containing eggs and milk so may contain particles from cross-contamination.

• Morinaga Macrobiha Nuts & Salt/Morinaga マクロビ派ナッツと塩. Ingredients: Wheat flour, edible rapeseed oil, sugar (sugar beet sugar), oat flakes, almonds, whole wheat flour, sunflower seeds, cashew nuts, macadamia nuts, salt, soy sauce (contains soy), powdered miso.

Product contains wheat, cashew nuts, and soy.

Processed on the same equipment as items containing egg and milk.

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Lawson has some vegan cookies available, with branding on them from their more vegan-friendly line of convenience stores, Natural Lawson.

• Natural Lawson Pumpkin Macrobiotic Cookies/かぼちゃのマクロビオティッククッキー. Ingredients: wheat, beet sugar syrup, rapeseed oil, pumpkin powder, beet sugar, salt. All ingredients except the rapeseed oil are domestically produced.

Manufactured in the same facility as products containing egg, milk, peanuts, walnuts, sesame, soybeans, banana, peach, and apple.

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Lawson:

Oreo Crispy Mint Ice Cream/オレオ クリスピー ミントアイス. Ingredients: Wheat flour, sugar, vegetable oil, corn starch, cocoa powder, salt/leavening agent, emulsifier, flavouring, antioxidant (vitamin E, vitamin C), coloring (gardenia, carotene, turmeric). Product contains wheat and soy.

Products containing dairy and eggs are processed in the same factory.

These may be vegan, but the ingredient list doesn’t state the source of the vitamin E, flavouring, or emulsifier. Since it contains soy, the emulsifier could be soy emulsifer.

oreo crispy mint ice cream    oreo crispy thin mint ingredient panel

BARS

SOYJOY crispy, according to the manufacturer’s website, Otsuka Pharmaceuticals, are “nutritional foods made with whole soybean flour, fruits and nuts, containing no wheat. They offer a smart and delicious way to enjoy the nutritional goodness of soy, including vegetable protein, soy isoflavones, and dietary fiber.”

SOYJOY crispy contain sugar that is confirmed to have been whitened using the bone char processing method.

As Otsuka Pharmaceuticals is a pharmaceutical company, they surely do animal testing, but we don’t have information on if this specific product was developed using animal testing.

SOYJOY crispy comes in five regular flavours, banana, mixed berry, peach, plain, and white macadamia (contains non-dairy white chocolate made of soy). There is also a seasonal, limited edition sakura/cherry blossom flavour.

Regular SOYJOY (not SOYJOY crispy) contain egg and butter. Be sure to check that the package says “crispy” in English, as otherwise the packaging is virtually identical.

SOYJOY crispy is manufactured on the same equipment as items containing egg, milk and peanuts.

More information can be found on the English-language Otsuka Pharmaceuticals website

• Otsuka Pharmaceuticals SOYJOY Crispy, Banana/大塚製薬 ソイジョイ クリスピー バナナ. Ingredients: Soy flour (non genetically modified), margarine, puffed soy (soy protein, tapioca starch), processed banana, banana puree, processed pineapple, non-digestible dextrin, sugar, agave syrup, salt/sorbitol, flavouring.

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• Otsuka Pharmaceuticals SOYJOY Crispy, Mixed Berry/大塚製薬 ソイジョイ クリスピー ミックスベリー. Soy flour (Japan-processed, non genetically modified), margarine, puffed soy (soy protein, tapioca starch), sugar, processed cranberry, processed raspberry, non-digestible dextrin, processed strawberry, salt/flavouring.

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• Otsuka Pharmaceuticals SOYJOY Crispy, Peach/大塚製薬 ソイジョイ クリスピー ピーチ. Ingredients: Soy flour (non genetically modified), margarine, puffed soy (soy protein, tapioca starch), processed peach, sugar, non-digestible dextrin, processed papaya, processed orange peel/flavouring, sorbitol.

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• Otsuka Pharmaceuticals SOYJOY Crispy, Plain/大塚製薬 ソイジョイ クリスピー プレーン. Soy flour (Japan-processed, non genetically modified), margarine, puffed soy (soy protein, tapioca starch), sugar, processed papaya, processed pineapple, non-digestible dextrin, salt/flavouring.

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• Otsuka Pharmaceuticals SOYJOY Crispy, White Macadamia/大塚製薬 ソイジョイ クリスピー ホワイトマカデミア. Ingredients: Soy flour (Japan-processed, non genetically modified), margarine, puffed soy (soy protein, tapioca starch), soymilk chocolate (sugar, cocoa butter, soy powder, other), sugar, non-digestible dextrin, macadamia nut, soy protein, salt/flavouring.

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• Otsuka Pharmaceuticals SOYJOY Sakura/大塚製薬 ソイジョイ クリスピー サクラ. Ingredients: Soy flour (Japan-processed, non genetically modified), margarine, sweet white bean paste, puffed soy (soy protein, tapioca starch), sugar, processed cranberry, non-digestible dextrin, salt/sorbitol, flavouring.

More information about this product can be found here on the English-language Otsuka Pharmaceuticals website.

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STEAMED BUN FILLED WITH SWEET BEAN PASTE (あんまん – ANMAN)

Near the convenience store counter you can find a warming oven containing anman and nikuman (steamed buns filled with meat).

Family Mart’s 2 anman (simple and with sesame) don’t include any animal-derived ingredients. Lawson uses pork based shortening and lard in the batter, dehydrated eggs and also dairy in rice fermentation. 7/11 cannot confirm for sure if their products contain animal ingredients, as if it’s a small quantity it doesn’t appear on the ingredients or allergen list. It is possible 7-11 anman has some pork or other animal-derived ingredients.

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CHOCOLATES

Asahi’s Ippon Manzoku Bar Cereal Black 80% Less Sugar/一本満足バー シリアルブラック 糖質80%オフ. Ingredients: Maltitol, cocoa mass, corn flakes, vegetable oil, macadamia nuts, dextrin, wheat puffs (wheat, starch, other ingredients) raisins, cocoa powder, cocoa butter,  glucomannan/cellulose, emulsifier, flavouring, vitamin E, sweetener (sucralose), vitamin B6, vitamin B2, vitamin B1, vitamin B12. (Contains wheat, dairy and soybeans.) 

This is a chocolate bar that has been fortified with some vitamins, including 1.1 mcg of B12. 

The company has stated that it contains no animal ingredients. However, it may have cross-contamination from milk being processed in the same factory or on the same line, so in this case, the warning on the package that makes it look as if dairy is an ingredient only means that particles may be present from cross-contamination. Be sure to get the one in the black packaging as the others have animal ingredients such as milk. It can be found in many convenience stores (as well as some drugstores).

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The following Meiji chocolates do not contain any dairy as an ingredient. However, they may have cross-contamination from milk being processed in the same factory or on the same line, so in this case, the warning on the package that makes it look as if dairy is an ingredient only means that particles may be present from cross-contamination.

The company has also stated that they do use bone-char processed sugar in the making of these chocolates and they are not a product that is guaranteed to not use any animal products in the manufacturing process. It is not clear how the flavourings in the “Chocolate Effects” series are made.

Some of the following choices are available in convenience stores, and the rest in supermarkets or online.

Other chocolates in the same “The Chocolate” and “Chocolate Effects” series do contain dairy as an ingredient, not just as traces from manufacturing, including The Chocolate Framboise (Raspberry).

Meiji The Chocolate Comfort Bitter/Meiji ザ・チョコレート   力強い深みコンフォートビタ. Ingredients: Cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter/emulsifier. Marked “contains dairy and soy.” The dairy warning, in this case, refers to small particles that may be present due to this product being processed alongside products containing dairy.

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Meiji The Chocolate Elegant Bitter/Meiji ザ・チョコレート   華やかな果実味エレガントビタ. Ingredients: Cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter/emulsifier. Marked “contains dairy and soy.” The dairy warning, in this case, refers to small particles that may be present due to this product being processed alongside products containing dairy.

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Meiji The Chocolate Blossom Bitter/ Meiji ザ・チョコレート 凛と香り立つブロッサムビタ. Ingredients: Cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter/emulsifier. Marked “contains dairy and soy.” The dairy warning, in this case, refers to small particles that may be present due to this product being processed alongside products containing dairy.

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Meiji The Chocolate Fragrant Yuzu/Meiji  ザ・チョコレート 弾ける香りゆず. Ingredients: Cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter, yuzu powder, yuzu peel, vegetable oil/emulsifier. Marked “contains dairy and soy.” The dairy warning, in this case, refers to small particles that may be present due to this product being processed alongside products containing dairy.

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There is also a three-pack available in some stores that contains small portions of Comfort Bitter, Elegant Bitter, and Blossom Bitter. 

• Meiji The Chocolate 3 Cocoa Flavor Set/Meiji  ザ・チョコレート 3つのカカオ香味セット.

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• Meiji Chocolate Effects 72% Cacao Blocks/Meiji チョコレート効果カカオ72%.  Comes in two sizes, one large blocks and the other small. The ingredients for both sizes are the same. Ingredients: Cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa powder, cocoa butter/emulsifier, flavouring. Marked “contains dairy and soy.” The dairy warning, in this case, refers to small particles that may be present due to this product being processed alongside products containing dairy.

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• Meiji Chocolate Effects 86% Cacao Blocks/Meiji チョコレート効果カカオ86%. Comes in two sizes, one large blocks (not pictured here) and the other small. The ingredients for both sizes are the same. Ingredients: Cocoa mass, cocoa powder, sugar, cocoa butter/emulsifier, flavouring. Marked “contains dairy and soy.” The dairy warning, in this case, refers to small particles that may be present due to this product being processed alongside products containing dairy.

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Meiji Chocolate Effects 95% Cacao Blocks/Meiji チョコレート効果カカオ95%Ingredients: Cocoa mass, cacao powder, sugar, cocoa butter/emulsifier, flavouring. Marked “contains dairy and soy.” The dairy warning, in this case, refers to small particles that may be present due to this product being processed alongside products containing dairy.

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•  Meiji Chocolate Effects 72% Cacao Blocks with Roasted Crushed Almonds/ Meiji チョコレート効果72%素焼きクラッシュアーモンド

• Meiji Chocolate Effects 72% Cacao Blocks with Coarsely Ground Cacao/チョコレート効果72%素チョコレート効果72% 粗くだきカカオ豆 This product is not viewable on the website, although it may still be sold in some places. It may be in the process of being replaced with the following product:

Meiji Chocolate Effects 72% Cacao Blocks with Cacao Nibs/Meiji チョコレート効果 カカオ72% カカオニブ. Ingredients: Cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa powder, fried cacao nibs, vegetable oil, cocoa butter/emulsifier, flavouring. Marked “contains dairy and soy.” The dairy warning, in this case, refers to small particles that may be present due to this product being processed alongside products containing dairy.

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The ball type in the Chocolate Effects series contains shellac, produced from insects, so they are not vegan. It’s listed as 光沢剤 kōtaku-zai, (food) polisher/brightener.

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FRUIT JELLY

Most jelly in Japan is made with agar (seaweed) rather than gelatine, although you should still check the list of ingredients. Look for:

gelatine ゼラチン zerachin
agar agar 天草 / 寒天 てんぐさ / かんてん tengusa / kanten
gelling/setting agent ゲル化剤 gerukazai (can be either an animal-based or plant-based ingredient)

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JAPANESE-STYLE SWEETS

You can usually find traditional style Japanese sweets in convenience stores. For example, daifuku, anmitsu (on left side below – check for honey) and zenzai (on right side below):

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SOYMILK

Here are some of the products you might see in convenience stores. As with the other products in this list, some products may contain ingredients that are not confirmed vegan such as flavorings and emulsifiers. Check our Dairy Alternatives page for more detailed information.

 

Marusan Co-Trip Black Sesame and Sweet Potato Soymilk Beverage/Marusan ことりっぷ 豆乳飲料 黒ごまさつまIngredients: Soybean (Canada) (not genetically modified), saccharides (sugar, millet jelly, fructose), vegetable oil, salt, sesame paste, Anno roasted potato paste/flavouring, emulsifier, stabilizer (gellan). Contains soy and sesame.

This collaboration product with travel book co-Trip uses black sesame and “annou imo,” a special type of potato with a high sugar content and orange-hued flesh.

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• Marusan Co-Trip Brown Sugar Syrup Soymilk Beverage/Marusan ことりっぷ 豆乳飲料 黒蜜きなこIngredients: Soybean (Canadian) (not genetically modified), saccharides (high-fructose corn syrup, fructose, sugar, brown sugar syrup), soy powder, salt, mirin, yeast extract powder/flavouring, stabilizer (thickening polysaccharide). Product contains soy.

This collaboration product with travel book co-Trip is made with Japanese brown sugar syrup called kuromitsu and kinako soy powder and is meant to taste like a traditional dessert.

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• Marusan Co-Trip Chestnut and Wasanbon Soymilk Beverage/Marusan ことりっぷ 豆乳飲料 栗と和三盆. Ingredients: Soybean (Canadian) (not genetically modified), saccharides [high-fructose corn syrup, fructose, sugar (wasanbon sugar, brown sugar, brown sugar), fructose], salt, mirin, chestnut powder/flavouring, stabilizer (gellan).

This collaboration product with travel book co-Trip uses chestnuts and traditional wasanbon sugar from Tokushima Prefecture.

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• Pokka Sapporo Euglena Brown Sugar Soymilk Beverage/黒糖豆乳飲料ユーグレナ. Ingredients: Soybean (non-genetically modified), brown sugar, vegetable oils and fats, salt, Euglena gracilis, lactic acid bacteria (sterilized), calcium lactate, pH adjuster, flavouring, emulsifier, stabilizers (thickening polysaccharides)

This brown sugar soymilk beverage contains vegetable lactic acid (from barley) and euglena. Note that euglena is considered to be neither a plant nor an animal, but a single-celled protist.

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NewDays:

• Sujahta Meiraku Banana Soymilk Drink with Organic Soybeans/スジャータ めいらく有機大豆使用 バナナ 豆乳飲料. Ingredients: Organic soybeans (not genetically modified), sugar, banana puree/ stabilizer (thickening polysaccharide), coloring agent (safflower, carotene), flavour, potassium chloride, acidulant.

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NewDays:

Sujahta Meiraku Kinako Roasted Soybean Flour Soymilk Drink with Organic Soybeans/スジャータ めいらく有機大豆使用 きなこ 豆乳飲料. Ingredients: Organic soybeans (not genetically modified), sugar (brown sugar, brown sugar), vegetable fats and oils, powdered starch syrup, organic roasted soybean powder, sun-dried salt/cellulose, emulsifier, flavouring, thickening polysaccharides.

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This product seems to be sold in two different packages, but the ingredient list is the same.

Sujahta Roasted Soybean Powder Soymilk/スジャータ 豆乳きなこ.

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• Sujahta Soymilk with Hazelnuts and Banana/スジャータ 豆乳 ヘーゼルナッツ&バナナ. Ingredients: Organic soybeans (not genetically modified), sugar, dietary fiber, rice oil, hazelnut paste, banana puree, sun-dried salt/emulsifier, calcium chloride, thickening polysaccharides, flavouring, vitamin E derivative, carotenoid pigment.

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ALMOND MILK 

The first two varieties of Glico Almond Effects shown below (Original Almond Milk and Caffe Almond Latte) are older product versions, and the second two varieties of Glico Almond Effects (Caffe Almond Latte in the lighter-colored package and Almond & Walnut) are newer product versions.

• Glico Almond Effects TASTY Original Almond Milk/グリコ アーモンド効果テイスティ Original Almond Milk. Ingredients: Almond paste, sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, dietary fiber (inulin), table salt, processed almond oil, thickener (processed starch), cellulose, calcium citrate, flavouring, pH adjusting agent, emulsifier, antioxidant (vitamin C), vitamin E.

Free of all 27 allergenic ingredients. Available at all Family Mart convenience stores nationwide.

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• Glico Almond Effects TASTY Caffe Almond Latte/グリコ アーモンド効果テイスティ Caffe Almond Latte. Ingredients: Sugar, almond paste, coffee extract, dietary fiber (inulin), high-fructose corn syrup, table salt, processed almond oil, thickener (processed starch), cellulose, calcium citrate,  pH adjusting agent, flavouring, emulsifier, antioxidant (vitamin C), vitamin E.

Espresso coffee with almond milk. Free of all 27 allergenic ingredients. Available at all Family Mart convenience stores nationwide.

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This product has also been reissued as of March 2019 with very slightly different packaging and the same ingredients in a different order.

Glico Almond Effects TASTY Caffe Almond Latte/グリコ アーモンド効果テイスティ Caffe Almond Latte. Ingredients: Sugar, almond paste, coffee extract, dietary fiber (inulin), high-fructose corn syrup, salt, processed almond oil/thickener (processed starch), cellulose, pH adjusting agent, calcium citrate, flavouring, emulsifier, antioxidant (vitamin C), vitamin E). Contains none of the top 27 allergens.

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• Glico Almond Effects TASTY Almond & Walnut/グリコ アーモンド効果テイスティAlmond & Walnut is not vegan as it has honey, ハチミツ/hachimitsu.

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SMOOTHIES 

Lawson:

• Kagome Vegetable Life 100 Almond Milk, Strawberry and Maqui Berry Mix/Kagome 野菜生活100 スムージーアーモンドミルク&いちごマキベリーMix. Ingredients: Vegetables (carrot (USA), kale, spinach, asparagus, watercress, parsley, pumpkin, lettuce, cabbage, beets, daikon, Chinese cabbage, onion, celery), fruits (apples, mango, banana, strawberry, maqui berry, lemon), soybeans, dietary fiber, almond paste, agar/flavour , pH adjuster, emulsifier, vitamin E.

Uses no sugar, sweeteners, or thickeners.

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• Kagome Vegetable Life 100 Banana and Soymilk Mixed Smoothie/Kagome 野菜生活100 スムージー豆乳バナナMix. Ingredients: Vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes, kale, spinach, asparagus, watercress, parsley, pumpkins, lettuce, cabbage, beets, daikon, Chinese cabbage, onion, celery), fruits (apples, bananas, lemon), soybeans, dietary fiber, agar-agar, soymilk/pH adjusting agent, flavour, emulsifier, vitamin C.

Uses no sugar, sweeteners, or thickeners.

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• Kagome Vegetable Life 100 Green Smoothie Mix/Kagome 野菜生活100 Smoothie グリーンスムージーMix. Ingredients: Vegetables (carrots, peppers, Japanese mustard spinach, kale, spinach, asparagus, watercress, parsley, pumpkin, lettuce, cabbage, beets, daikon, Napa cabbage, onion, celery), fruits (apples, grapes, kiwi fruits, bananas, lemons), dietary fiber/flavour, citric acid, safflower yellow pigment, gardenia blue pigment. (Product includes orange, kiwi fruit, banana, apple.)

Uses no sugar, sweeteners, or thickeners.

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• Sujahta Meiraku Kiwi Chia Seed/スジャータ めいらく キウイチアシード. Ingredients: Apple juice concentrate, kiwifruit, grape juice concentrate, chia seed, lemon juice concentrate, pineapple juice concentrate/flavour, vitamin C, stabilizer (polysaccharide thickener), gardenia pigment.

It contains 1.2 g of n-3 fatty acid (omega 3 fatty acid) and 100 mg of vitamin C. (Product is not intended to cure diseases or improve health by high intake. Please follow the recommended daily intake.)

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COFFEE

There will generally be a coffee machine by the register, and black coffee is available in bottles/cans. Some of the black coffee in bottles/cans have flavourings and emulsifiers, while others do not.

• Boss The Espresso Black/ボス ザ・エスプレッソ ブラック. Ingredients: Coffee, flavouring.

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• UCC BLACK COLD BREW PET 500ml. Ingredient: Coffee.

No sugar, no flavourings.

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•  UCC Black No Sugar Wholly Brewed Roasted Coffee, Cold/UCC BLACK無糖 缶香料無添加 ROASTED COFFEE 100%.

No added flavoring, unsweetened.

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•  UCC Black No Sugar Coffee, Hot.

No added sugar, no flavourings.

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Lawson/Natural Lawson has an item called the Soy Protein Latte that looks like it might be vegan from the ingredient list, but customer service stated that that the emulsifier in the Soy Protein Latte contains glycerin fatty esters from pig fat, 乳化剤に含まれる動物由来の原料は「グリセリン脂肪酸エステル」で豚脂を使って作られております. They stated that due to the manufacturing process, it isn’t required to label it as an allergen, as the allergenic substances are removed in the process. In addition, the sugar in the process is whitened with animal bone char (although it does not remain in the finished product). There are no other animal products in this product.

• Soy Protein Latte/ソイプロテインラテ. Ingredients: Soymilk, defatted soybeans, coffee, sugar, vegetable oil, salt/flavouring, cellulose, emulsifier, stabilizer (thickening polysaccharide), sweetener (stevia, monk fruit). Product contains soybeans.

This soy protein latte coffee beverage with Natural Lawson branding is advertised as high in protein and low in fat. The front of the package states it contains 10 grams of soy protein. It also contains 8.2 grams of sugar.

Quantities are limited.

Picture4.jpg    lawson soy protein latte back of package

Natural Lawson and NewDays:

Almond Breeze Cafe Style/アーモンド・ブリーズ カフェスタイル. Ingredients: Sugar, coffee, almond paste, dextrin, vegetable oil, salt /potassium citrate, stabilizer (polysaccharide thickener), pH adjuster, emulsifier, vitamin E, flavour.

An almond milk and coffee blended drink. Their website states it’s sold countrywide except for Hokkaido and Okinawa.

almond breeze cafe style front of package (2)  almond breeze cafe style back of package

FROZEN CONFECTIONERY

Akagi Gari Gari Kun Kyushu Mikan Ice Block/赤城 ガリガリ君九州みかん. Ingredients: High-fructose corn syrup, mandarin juice, sugar, apple juice, salt/flavouring, stabilizing agent (pectin), acidulant, paprika pigment, sweetener (stevia).

Contains 7% mandarin juice.

Manufactured on common equipment with products containing milk and egg.

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Akagi Gari Gari Kun Muscat Grape Ice Block/赤城 ガリガリ君ムスカっと. Ingredients: Grape juice, sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, starch syrup, apple juice, grape extract, salt/stabilizer (thickening polysaccharides), acidulant, flavouring, coloring (safflower yellow, spirulina blue, gardenia), sweetener (stevia).

Manufactured on common equipment with products containing milk and egg.

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Akagi Gari Gari Kun Soda Ice Block/赤城 ガリガリ君 ソーダ. Ingredients: High-fructose corn syrup, sugar, apple juice, glucose, lime juice, starch syrup, liqueur, salt/flavouring, stabilising agent (pectin), acidity regulator, colouring (spirulina blue, gardenia pigment, safflower yellow).

Manufactured on common equipment with products containing milk and egg.

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Family Mart Fruit Bars with Fruit Juice/ 果汁入りフルーツバーContains three flavours, orange, grape, and apple.

(Orange bars): Orange juice, sugar, starch syrup, acidulant, stabilising agent (polysaccharide thickener), flavouring, paprika pigment, carotene pigment.

(Grape bars): Grape juice, sugar, starch syrup, stabilising agent (polysaccharide thickener), acidulant, flavouring, grape pigment.

(Apple bars): apple juice, sugar, starch syrup, acidulant, stabilising agent (polysaccharide thickener), flavouring, gardenia pigment.

Does not contain any of the seven most common allergens. The three flavours are manufactured on the same equipment.

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Family Mart:

• Glico Papico White Peach/Glico パピコ 白桃. Ingredients: Peach juice・ peach flesh, high-fructose corn syrup, sugar, starch syrup, vegetable oil/stabilising agent (thickening polysaccharide), flavouring, emulsifier, acidity regulator, coloring (yellow safflower, vegetable dye).

Product contains peach.

Limited-edition product. Contains none of the top 27 allergens except for peach.

Products containing dairy are processed on the same line.

Photo from website.

glico papico white peach

Red bean ‘ice cream’ can easily be found in convenience stores, and many types do not contain dairy.

Imuraya Adzuki Bar/井村屋 あずきバー. Ingredients: Sugar, adzuki beans, starch syrup, cornstarch (non-genetically modified), salt.

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Lawson:

• Lotte Fresh Grape Ice Cream/Lotte 爽 巨峰. Ingredients: Grape juice (Kyoho 100%), sugar, starch syrup, vegetable oil/trehalose, stabilizer (polysaccharide thickener, cellulose), acidulant, coloring agent (vegetable pigment, gardenia), flavour, emulsifier.

Photo from website.

Lotte Fresh Grape Ice Cream.jpg

Lawson Fruits Ice Bar/4種の甘熟フルーツバーContains four flavours, green kiwi, Concord grape, Aomori Prefecture apple, and white peach.

(Green kiwi bars): Kiwi fruit juice (100% Hayward variety), sugar, starch syrup, powdered starch syrup, vegetable fats and oils, table salt/stabilizing agent (cellulose, polysaccharide thickener), colorants (gardenia, safflower color), emulsifier, flavourings.

(Concord grape bars): Grape juice, sugar, starch syrup, powdered starch syrup, lemon juice, fermented grape juice/stabilizing agent (cellulose, polysaccharide thickener), flavourings.

(Aomori Prefecture apple bars): Apples (100% grown in Aomori Prefecture), sugar, starch syrup, powdered starch syrup, table salt/stabilizing agent (polysaccharide thickener, cellulose), acidity regulator, flavouring, carotene pigment.

(White peach bars): White peach juice (100% white peaches, grown in Japan), sugar, starch syrup, fructose/stabilizing agent (polysaccharide thickener, cellulose), acidity regulator, flavourings.

20190404_150051 (2).jpg    20190404_150102 (2)

7-11 4 Assorted Flavour Fruit Bars/セブンプレミアム4種の果実食感フルーツバーマルチContains four flavours, kyoho grape, satsuma mandarin, Asian pear, and muscat grape.

(Kyoho grape bars): Fruit juice, high-fructose corn syrup, starch syrup, sugar/acidulant, stabilizer (polysaccharide thickener), flavouring.

(Satsuma mandarin bars): Mandarin juice, sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, starch syrup/acidulant, stabilizer (polysaccharide thickener), flavouring, carotenoid pigment.

(Asian pear bars): Japanese (Asian) pear juice, high-fructose corn syrup, starch syrup, sugar/acidulant, stabilizer (polysaccharide thickener), flavouring, flavonoid pigment.

(Muscat grape bars): Grape juice, high-fructose corn syrup, sugar, starch syrup/acidulant, stabilizer (polysaccharide thickener), flavouring, coloring (safflower colour, gardenia).

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24 thoughts on “Convenience Stores

  1. buzzinjapan

    Thank you for this comprehensive list! A lot of stuff I wouldn’t haven even thought to check.

    I have not been able to find any packaged onigiri or sushi in supermarkets, convenience stores, or department stores that doesn’t list amino/アミノas an ingredient, though, which may or may not be vegan. I’ve found packaged daifuku to often suffer from the same problem, though I finally found some ichigo daifuku in Daimaru that was 100% vegan without a doubt.

    Reply
  2. Leïla

    This list is very useful, thanks !
    It may be useful to add the japanese writing of anman あんまん (according to wikipedia) to have a 2nd verification at the combini.

    Reply
  3. Korellia

    The new Soy Joy Crispy bars would be worth adding. The original ones contain egg, but the crispy kind is vegan!

    Reply
  4. Chan Huat Low

    Thank you so much for the list and updated information. It really helps for vegetarians. May you be well and happy always!

    Reply
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  7. A.S

    Hi this is a great list! Thank you so much 🙂 How old is this information? It might be a nice idea to add a ‘last updated’ date 🙂 (I am sorry if I missed it)

    Reply
      1. isitveganjapan Post author

        No problem! We don’t have a specific restaurants section because there are already websites that cover that info very well, like Happy Cow and Vegewel. There are a few restaurants in the Airports and Fast Food sections though, both under the “Food to Go” sections

  8. Pingback: Vegan Guide to Tokyo - The Tasty K

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  11. Alex

    Thank you so much! So informative! Makes it super easy to find vegan food in Japanese convinience stores. Only thing I would love to see would be sekihan onigiri and wakame onigiri added to the list. (Which i’m pretty sure is vegan and can be found at 7/11. They are the ones without the nori wrap on the outside)

    Reply
    1. isitveganjapan Post author

      Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, it’s very difficult to confirm if any onigiri from 7/11 is animal-ingredient free. The reason is that 7-11 has reported its onigiri differ in ingredients depending on what part of the country they are made at, as they are made at different manufacturing facilities. Therefore even if we inquire about sekihan or wakame onigiri, the answer would only be applicable to our area and not the whole country. They could only confirm their salt onigiri (銀しゃりむすび塩むすび) to be animal-ingredient free. We don’t have information about wakame onigiri, but 4 out of 5 convenience stores asked said their kombu seaweed onigiri does contain animal ingredients. It’s possible wakame onigiri contains animal ingredients to flavour the seaweed off-label in small amounts.

      Reply
      1. Joaha

        Thanks a lot for all the effort. Do you have new informations regarding the kombu onigiri at Mini stop?

      2. isitveganjapan Post author

        You’re very welcome! Unfortunately we don’t have new information about Mini Stop onigiri-whenever we do we’ll add it as quickly as possible. Due to time constraints it’s been very difficult to keep the onigiri list updated as companies change their onigiri names and ingredient lists so quickly, but we’ll keep it in mind that it’s a category a lot of people depend on when eating out (me included).

  12. Viet

    I’ve been wanting to work through this list, but after I checked the fifth Family Mart (I live in Sendai, which I believe has less variety compared to bigger cities) and finally found the tofu somen style noodles (https://www.kibun.co.jp/products/all_152330a?fbclid=IwAR1RbRU41MGsDw8KxyA0ULUJopruda8nqgWe1C3B1sszW-CVYBddP3rrZvk <- ingredient list is not up to date!!!!!!!!!!!), I saw that in both packages, which are pictured on this page, KATSUO (skipjack bonito fish) is in their sauces! Unfortunately Japanese food companies change their recipes all the time, which is such a drag. 😦

    Reply
    1. isitveganjapan Post author

      Thanks so much for your comment! The ingredient list on the kibun.co.jp website still shows the 胡麻つゆ sesame sauce one as not containing fish. Do you have a picture of the ingredient list on the package? If so can you send it to: isitveganjapan@hotmail.com? The one with mentsuyu sauce has fish and is only on our page as an example of what not to buy. If we can confirm the sesame sauce one has fish too we’ll change the listing.

      Edit: The kibun.co.jp website has been updated to show the new packaging. The sesame sauce version in orange packaging still is listed as not containing fish or other animal ingredients and the listed ingredients have not changed, but the packaging looks slightly different. The mentsuyu version has fish still but is now in blue packaging instead of purple. And there is now a third a version containing egg and fish in green packaging. We have added updated photos and information. Thanks for letting us know these items had changed.

      Reply

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