Make a run for the border, Okinawan style
Although tako (タコ) or octopus is a special ingredient in Japanese food culture, since the 1980s Taco Rice originating in Okinawa has become an equally important anchor at the opposite end of the Japanese culinary spectrum.
Taco rice is a popular Japanese dish consisting of taco-flavored ground beef served on a bed of rice, frequently served with shredded cheese, shredded lettuce, tomato and salsa. The dish was created in 1984 by Matsuzo Gibo in Okinawa and introduced at two of his cafes, Parlor Senri and King Tacos, located just minutes from the Marine base.
MUJI's Taco Rice is simple to make with only a frying pan and rice. With beef, vegetables, jalapeño and olives, an authentic Mexican-Okinawa experience is only minutes away.
MUJI Taco Rice is available online as well as in all stores in Japan and China.
In today's bifurcating food sector highlighted by the growing importance of food tech such as Amazon Go and the continued expansion of value typified by the likes of Trader Joe's, MUJI stands in a niche all of its own.
Started in 1980 by SEIYU as an entry-level private label called MUJIRUSHI RYOHIN, or "NO-NAME QUALITY GOODS", it has grown into an independent $2B corporation with over 700 stores and business in food, apparel and home goods.
Over the years, many terms have been used to describe MUJI, from minimalistic to basic, from Zen to rational, but the reality is that the spirit of MUJI cannot be understood through any single word or concept.
• MUJI products are functional, designed with precision to meet the ultimate consumer utilitarian need, with no frills or extras.
• MUJI products are unobtrusive beautiful, they are ready to fit into any lifestyle without pushing any style or aesthetic agenda of their own.
• MUJI products are natural and delicious, made without artificial flavorings and ingredients, but made 'good' through avoiding the puffery of wholesomeness and instead maximizing value by using imperfect sized dried fruits, cookies, pretzels or pasta, that provide equal nutritional value and flavor.
What's truly unique about MUJI is that it defies the traditional boundaries of value vs. luxury and sets a new global standard for consumerism and branding. The assertion that the individual's identity trumps brand identity and personality, and that the ultimate goal of the brand is to provide a foundation of quality, utilitarian design and natural materials on which the consumer is to build a life directed solely by their own style and aesthetic.