Saturday, March 8, 2008

SAKUMA SHIKI DROPS

I collect pretty tins and have been eating these since small - Sakuma Shiki Drops. I believe Sakuma Confectionary releases a new design every now and then, so some people collect them. Aren't they eye-catching and retro! This design features Sakuma's 100th Anniversary (since 1908, that is: Meiji Year 41) with vintage fonts. They cost quite cheap, mine is between S$1.80-$2.00 which is about US$1.50; I always grab a pack when I see it (tho not often). Unfortunately someone always throws my stuff away!



I almost forgot to mention yes, this is the same candy drops featured in Studio Ghibli's movie 'Hotaru no Haka' 火垂るの墓 / 'Grave of the Fireflies' where 2 sibling orphans struggle to survive through WW2 in Japan. Little Setsuko's only luxury during that period was this candy. After she died her brother put her ashes into the tin. After he died, well the tin was thrown out by the trainstation cleaner. This is the most tragic animation I've ever seen, but one of my faves.


I remember having difficulty opening the lid too!


Characters read right to left.


Real life version, this is a modern reproduction, Sakuma also produced a commemorative design with Setsuko on it, picture from wikipedia.

There is another similar tin candy called Sakuma Drops but does not come with 'Shiki 式' in its title and is manufactured by 'サクマ製菓株式會社' instead of '佐久間製菓株式会社' both also read as Sakuma lol. Don't get confused now! See what I mean here.

8 comments:

ra said...

haha those rule i want one, and that movie was cool.. feel sorry for the little girl

Tizzalicious said...

Those tins are cute!

Julie said...

Oh yeah, I bought some in Paris' Japan expo a while ago, i kept the box, I wish i could find some more because it's very good.

I also thought of the movie when i bought it, so sad but very beautiful :)

Joey's Dream Garden said...

Hi again!
I'm really enjoying reading your blog! I haven't seen these sweets before so I might have to go to the Chinese supermarket in town to see if they have some. yes the tins are so cute! Do they get all sticky inside? If not, I would keep little bits and bobs inside. Are they gumdrops or boiled sweets?

I haven't seen Grave of the Fireflies but I do like Studio Ghibli films... here in the UK they only just released a load on DVD last year, before that you would have to buy them on import and have a region 1 DVD player... crazy world!

Cheers!
Joey :D

Lemon Shortbread said...

Joey- why thank you!
I think you can get these sweets at Japanese stores, don't think chinese ones carry them unless you are very fortunate! These are boiled sweets with some sugar icing powder so they don't stick but mine does anyway because it is humid and warm here; I give them a good shake to dislodge them. You probably have to wash the tin after eating but the candy smell remains. Regarding DVDs, I bought a region-free DVD player so I can watch movies around the world hehe!

Christopher Sobieniak said...

Hi again!
I'm really enjoying reading your blog! I haven't seen these sweets before so I might have to go to the Chinese supermarket in town to see if they have some. yes the tins are so cute! Do they get all sticky inside? If not, I would keep little bits and bobs inside. Are they gumdrops or boiled sweets?


Someone in a YouTube review compared them to Lemonheads, a type of candy we have here in the states. They have a powdered touch to them but I'm sure they're hard candies you suck on, like cough drops.

I haven't seen Grave of the Fireflies but I do like Studio Ghibli films... here in the UK they only just released a load on DVD last year, before that you would have to buy them on import and have a region 1 DVD player... crazy world!

Cheers!
Joey :D


And yet the US had it on home video since the 90's!

Oddly, Sakuma never thought to market this product to the west much at all, or it would be nice to have seen it in regular supermarkets like the one near me that sells Glico's Pocky and Meiji's Hello Panda these days.

Lemon Shortbread said...

Christopher- Yes they are hard candies! They are sometimes available at Daiso, since Daiso now exists in the US!

Christopher Sobieniak said...

I didn't know we have those here now. Checking the site, not surprising they're mostly in California, It'll be a long time til I see something nice like that here in Ohio.