Meiji The Chocolate - Success Case Study

Meiji The Chocolate - Success Case Study


Meiji, an established food manufacturer based in Japan, launched a gourmet chocolate bar named Meiji The Chocolate in 2014. However, the product failed to strike a chord with consumers as it lacked a distinct flavor. Subsequently, armed with research, the company revisited its strategy and introduced Meiji The Chocolate in 2016. Meiji offered the product in eight flavors - Brilliant Milk, Comfort Bitter, Elegant Bitter, Framboise, Matcha, Sunny Milk, Velvet Milk, and Vivid Milk - which are segregated into bitter and milk chocolate. The company adopted a Bean to Bar concept, procuring cacao beans from select plantations across the globe to create a dark chocolate with a distinct taste. Additionally, each bar of chocolate is fashioned as an assortment of differently shaped and patterned pieces to provide a varied consumption experience.

In September 2016, Meiji, a leading Japanese manufacturer of dairy and food products including confectionaries, introduced Meiji The Chocolate.

The new high-end dark chocolate bars were made available in eight flavors, targeted towards adults.

Within a year of its launch, 30 million Meiji The Chocolate bars were sold.


  • Meiji took the bold step of formulating Meiji The Chocolate as a dark chocolate, even though the majority of Japanese consumers prefer milk chocolate.
  • Japan is a major consumer of chocolates within Asia and consumption is growing.
  • Sourcing good quality cacao beans that offer a distinct taste has been a key factor for the product's success.
  • The packaging offers the tactile sensation of craft paper, and a foil stamp in the center of the front label is shaped as a cacao pod etched with abstract patterns to reflect different flavors.
  • Meiji used mass production to keep product prices competitive.
Reasons to Buy
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  • Success Case Study: Meiji The Chocolate
    • Meiji's "Bean to Bar" concept sees overwhelming response from Japanese consumers
    • Meiji adopted unconventional product packaging and a competitive pricing strategy
    • In Japan, the perception of chocolate as a healthy food drives consumption
    • The chocolate bars provided an indulgent consumption experience
    • Distinctive packaging with infographics developed around the main ingredient
    • Targeting department and specialist stores with a product made for convenience stores
    • Meiji capitalized on the tradition of gifting chocolates on Valentine's Day
    • Meiji The Chocolate brand has a potential to grow outside of Japan
    • Firms can tap into the growing market for premium and healthy chocolates in Japan
    • Authentic provenance can be used to elevate the perceived benefits of a product
    • GlobalData's TrendSights framework helps contextualize reasons for success or failure
  • Appendix
    • References

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