Not a day goes by without another article in the newspaper and magazines directed toward the subject of understanding “Japan Incorporated.” Much of the material is excellent, but a word of caution is in order. Care must he exercised to avoid arriving at generalities from specific studies, or the converse, making assumptions about individual situations from the perspective of reported generalities.
My information on the flavor business in Japan is based on personal experience and impressions gained during my seven years of working in Japan. I was sent to Japan to set up the PFW operations and later was given the responsibility to run the Hercules Far East offices for Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and the People’s Republic of China.
It is not our purpose to study centuries of history, cultural development, nor the details of socio-economic Japan. If we wish to understand Japanese business, however, we must understand the context in which it operates.