A history of powdered formula in Japan

It may come as a surprise to some of our readers that liquid ready-made baby formula has not been commercially available in Japan. Unlike the United States and Europe where liquid formula is a common sight on store shelves, Japan lacked a set of rules to regulate the production of a liquid form and manufacturers have been limited to selling the powdered type which users must mix with water.

However, thanks in part to Japan's experience with natural disasters such as the 2016 Kumamoto Earthquake, when victims were grateful to receive liquid formula from abroad, voices lobbying for change became louder. Japan's health ministry finally approved liquid formula in August 2018, giving the green light to food makers to develop products.

First liquid formula in Japan: Ezaki Glico's ICREO

The first out of the gate is Ezaki Glico's ICREO Akachan Miruku アイクレオ赤ちゃんミルク (ICREO Baby Formula), which just went on sale on their online store on March 5th, and will be available in stores from March 11th, on the 8th anniversary of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.

Ever since 2016, Ezaki Glico had been doing research into a liquid type of baby formula which could be stored at room temperature, so it was prepared when the ban was lifted and was the first company to complete development and tests, finally bringing their product to the market.

According to their press release, ICREO Baby Formula is not only a helpful solution in times of natural disaster, when stress can prevent mothers from lactating and there is sometimes no access to clean cold or hot water, but also in every day life for parents on the go or parents not used to preparing formula from powder.

Since this will be the first time for many parents to try a ready-made baby formula product, Ezaki Glico has provided a helpful diagram explaining how to use it:

Product Information

You can buy ICREO Baby Formula at Ezaki Glico's online store or in brick-and-mortar stores from March 11th.

  • Price: 200 JPY (excl. tax)
  • Quantity: 125 ml
  • Expiration: 6 months
  • Storage: At a temperature not exceeding room temperature
  • Packaging: Paper pack
  • Ingredients: edible processed fats and oils (separated lard, oleo oil, soybean oil, palm oil, palm olein), whey powder, lactose, powdered skim milk, concentrated protein whey, galactooligosaccharide, perilla oil/V.C., lecithin, carbonate K, chloride K, hydroxide Ca, V.E., inositol, taurine, 5'-CMP, zinc sulfate, uridylate Na, iron sulfate, niacin, 5'-AMP, pantothenic acid Ca, copper sulphate, V.A., insoine acid Na, guanylate acid Na, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6, carotene, folic acid, biotin, V.D., Vitamin B12 (also contains some milk and soy components)
  • Nutritional information (per 100 g): Calories: 68 kcal, Carbohydrates: 7.1 g, Vitamin B1: 0.10 mg, Vitamin B12: 0.1-0.4 μg, Vitamin E: 2.6 mg, Folic Acid: 26 μg, Calcium: 41 mg, Potassium: 92 mg, Zinc: 0.4 mg, Inositol: 6 mg, Chlorine: 39 mg, Taurine: 3.1 mg, Protein: 1.4 g, salt equivalent: 0.04 g, Vitamin B2: 0.14 mg, Vitamin C: 39 mg, Vitamin K: 4 μg, Pantothenic Acid: 0.63 mg, Phosphorous: 32 mg, Magnesium: 5 mg, Selenium: 1.6 μg, Linoleic Acid: 0.5 g, Choline: 10 mg, Galactooligosaccharide: 0.05 g, Fat: 3.8 g, Vitamin A: 70 μg, Vitamin B6: 0.05 mg, Vitamin D: 1.3 μg, Niacin: 0.8 mg, Biotin: 3 μg, Iron: 0.4 mg, Copper: 0.04 mg, Beta-Carotene: 25 μg, Alpha-Linolenic Acid: 0.09 g, Phospholipids: 34 mg, ash content: 0.3 g

For more details, you can visit ICREO Baby Formula's page on Ezaki Glico's website. For questions, call customer service toll free at 0120-964-369 (within Japan) between 9:00 and 18:30 JST

By - Ben K.

© Ezaki Glico Co., Ltd.
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