Japan is almost out of butter


33 Responses to “Japan is almost out of butter”

  1. darrell says:

    I didn’t even notice.

    But then again, I eat vegan in the home, so you know…I wouldn’t have.

  2. Kyle Armbruster says:

    1) This butter shortage has been sucking for a few weeks now. My wife and I actually did stock up. It’s no fun, and a lot of people are upset. The Japanese diet incorporates a lot of Western food now (not just specialty baked goods–the butter on the shelves isn’t going to baking, I don’t think).

    2) A great summertime drink: Vodka, Calpis (sold as Calpico in the US–check your Asian grocer), soda water, ice. Mix to taste, but I like about 2oz of vodka, 1oz of Calpis, and about 9oz of soda. Refreshing and alcoholic.

  3. assumetehposition says:

    I butter my pancakes, and that’s about it. Thank goodness for non-stick pans.

  4. Stacyj says:

    Surely there’s some aspiring Dr. Seuss protege out there ready to take inspiration from this to write The Butter Battle Book, Part II …

    Quick, everyone load up their Kick-A-Poo Kids!

  5. charliekkendo says:

    LMAO @ Falcon Seven! hahaha!

    Um, carry on.

  6. noen says:

    Food Rationing Confronts Breadbasket of the World

    “Many parts of America, long considered the breadbasket of the world, are now confronting a once unthinkable phenomenon: food rationing. Major retailers in New York, in areas of New England, and on the West Coast are limiting purchases of flour, rice, and cooking oil as demand outstrips supply. There are also anecdotal reports that some consumers are hoarding grain stocks.”

    Call for global action to tackle food crisis

    “The head of the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) today called for global action to tackle the “silent tsunami” of the world food crisis.

    Josette Sheeran, executive director of the WFP, said international action is needed to respond in the same way nations reacted to the boxing day tsunami in 2004. If nothing is done, 100 million people face being plunged into hunger, Sheeran warned.”

  7. Falcon_Seven says:

    I suggest that they ask the late Marlon Brando.

  8. Jordan M says:

    Pfft. Lack of rice in California is due to people going crazy and buying up the stock. The idea that Costco somehow has unlimited amounts of rice or that when they run out it is an epidemic is silly.

    California unfortunately grows mostly short and medium grain rice… so sushi and risotto are plentiful, but people who want basmati are screwed.

    I don’t even think it is rice season. I mean, I don’t think they start harvesting rice for another few months.

  9. Cowicide says:

    I, for one, welcome our new butter shortage overlords.

  10. Porori says:

    Holy crap. I use butter a LOT (bread, cookies, etc) and thought this was only a problem at my local store. They stopped stocking anything other than single use butter packets…

    I had better go out and raid their dwindling stock before it`s all gone.

  11. noen says:

    It doesn’t necessarily matter if there is a fire in the theater. The important thing is to not get crushed at the exits. Unless of course there really is a fire, and there is, in that case you have a choice, get crushed or burn alive. Pick one.

    Knowledge is power. Is there enough food for everyone? What will the climate along the west coast eventually be? Will we be able to grow wheat? What are the chances that a category 4 hurricane will hit New York?

    Those questions seem esoteric today but not too long ago simpler questions like: Is there a housing bubble? Should I sell my Bear Sterns stock? also seemed “silly”. People who listened to the oh-so-reasonable advice of Cramer lost everything.

    There’s a storm coming. You can prepare or not, it’s your choice.

  12. Thebes says:

    Not only rice, but wheat and corn are also in short supply right now in the US. Bread prices are rising as bakeries face supply problems. Welcome to the New American Century…

  13. Enochrewt says:

    Is that sign proclaiming that there is no butter with boxes of sticks of butter sitting all around it? Or is that margarine? And if the shortage is so severe isn’t margarine acceptable?

  14. Bullpot says:

    I don’t think my Uncle Harry got much butter while he was building the Burma railroad back there in 1944, he was only about 94 pounds when he got home, he never complained much, I bet he thought we ate pretty well ha ha!

  15. Jordan M says:

    It was my understanding that upwards of 98% of Asians were lactose intolerant.

  16. Spoon says:

    @#3 posted by Porori

    Yesssssss, you do that, horde as much butter as you can! My purchase of butter futures and the, milky yellow, spreading of ‘butter shortage’ messages across the interbutts will ensure my little futures will triple in price before I sell them off in a week! oil was so last month, this month it’s all about butter futures!!! bwhahahahaahahah.

  17. Takuan says:

    they still use butter in Japan,mostly for specialty baked goods.

    Did you know there is a pejorative in Japanese vulgar speech for dairy eating foreigners. “Buttakussai”
    Literally “Butter- Stinkers”. It pertains to certain products of perspirations (nonenes?) which are acrid to the Japanese nose. You will never hear it among polite society.

  18. Sister Y says:

    #4 Yeah but that doesn’t stop them from eating dairy (ask someone who had to share a tiny, tiny, poorly-ventilated stateroom for an entire week with my lactose-intolerant sister who decided now was the time to drink chocolate milk and eat Brie straight out of the package, no crackers or ANYTHING).

  19. Agent 86 says:

    Good news, everyone! We’re due to run out of domestic rye this June, and our regular 3 month supply of wheat is down to 1 month.


    Good thing nothing is threatening the world’s practically-genetically-identical-wheat!


  20. Pipenta says:

    Lactose is milk sugar. Butter is mostly fat.

    It’s the lowfat stuff like skim milk that is total misery for the lactose intolerant.

  21. rancor01 says:

    err.. I just got back from the grocery store here in Kita-Senju (Northwest Tokyo), and there was no shortage of butter. I specifically went out to check this story… Maybe only the big stores? We still have a tub in our fridge, so I’m not worried yet…

  22. Jerril says:

    Margarine is high in trans fats, and tastes funny. It also has different cooking properties which can make it annoying to work with.

  23. Gainclone says:

    It’s butter ’cause Obama….

    Paula Dean had better not visit Japan.

  24. Irreal says:

    This would be a knock-on effect due to China’s increasing demand for it.
    Here in Australia we’ve had number of butter shortages (prices went right up), supposedly because the Chinese will buy whatever is available.
    Worryingly, it seems it’ll happen to us to. At least our dairy farmers are laughing all the way to the bank.

  25. Jordan M says:

    Huh. I thought lactose intolerance was well, painful.

    Seems like wanting butter, but not skim milk poses a pretty big problem though.

  26. flamingphonebook says:

    I’d gladly give up butter to live in a country with elephant-shaped urinal-cleaning robots.

  27. robofunk says:

    I’d just like to drop in and say that in general Japanese milk tastes bad. I did some research after returning from a year in Japan and a lot of people say it’s because it is pasteurized at a higher temperature to give the milk really long shelf life, or because I was buying milk that was reconstituted or both. *yuck*

  28. TharkLord says:


    Well, I guess this should make that “guns or butter” question much easier to resolve now.

  29. JazzBaby1922 says:

    Due to an increase in “ButterDog” Jap porno?

  30. Emily (daturazoku) says:

    @Enochrewt – those are all margarines.

    @robofunk – I agree, Japanese milk tastes nasty but it’s because I grew up on skim milk and Japanese milks are usually much higher in milkfat and the stuff that isn’t is processed in all sorts of absurd ways to be low calorie. They also sell a lot of wierd soy blends and whatnot.

    And yeah, WTF with Japanese milk shelf life??? I had a quart sitting in my fridge for a month I had forgotten about and when I went to clean it out it still had a regular milk consistency. x_x

  31. sailorrman says:

    look up dairy subsidies by gov. the u.s has milloins of #’s of butter in warehouses. i guess there is some law says they can’t sell it outside the u.s. go figure.

  32. Emily (daturazoku) says:

    Japan has been slowly pushing more and more products with dairy into the market since the 1960′s and most people here regularly eat things with some degree of dairy in them (milky caffe latte coffee drinks, cheesey macmeat burgers, and various types of chocolate being major ones) so I doubt the lactose problem is as bad as it used to be.

    Fun fact: that drink Calpis we all like to snicker at for it’s name is a lactose based soft drink introduced into the Japanese market by a dairy company to woo more people into drinking milk.

  33. Takuan says:

    Emily-chan; I would ask; your tribe name is most pussiant……

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