Shopping Seasonal Japan - Limited Edition Products

期間限定 "Kikan Gentei" - Limited time offer

“Spring passes and one remembers one's innocence.
Summer passes and one remembers one's exuberance.
Autumn passes and one remembers one's reverence.
Winter passes and one remembers one's perseverance.”
― Yoko Ono

One of the many things I love about Japan is its distinctive four seasons. You really haven't experienced the beauty of the country until you've witnessed it spring to spring. And it's not just nature that changes. The Japanese are proud of their deep attachment and appreciation of the cyclic seasons - great emphasis is placed on recognizing and exhibiting seasonal fashions, seasonal foods, and seasonal goods.

In this post, I'd like to introduce you to a set of kanji that will help you participate in the Japanese appreciation of seasons:


Pronounced "kikan gentei", the phrase means "limited goods", and are usually found on special season-only goods. Nothing is overlooked; everything from alcohol, snacks, beauty products, soft drinks, and more can be found with the 期間限定 mark on it screaming, "Buy me before it's too late!"

In the case of food and drinks, products are most likely to be infused with a seasonal ingredient or flavour. With other goods, 期間限定 means an item will only be available during the season. In either case, it's a fun way to try something that was intended to be enjoyed because of the time of year.

"Hunting" for 期間限定 items can also be fun, something to do while browsing the shelves at your local conbini or supermarket. I highly encourage you give it a go , hurry - before it's too late!

by Former Deep Japan Writer

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