10 Facts You May Not Know About Japan

As the host of the 2020 Summer Olympics, Japan has set itself up for the spotlight. With billions of eyes on them, all of the beauty and natural treasures of this nation will be on television for the world to see.

That broadcast, though, is more than five months away. In the meantime, Jarvisen has 10 awesome and interesting facts you may not already know about Japan.



1. One interesting fact about Japan is its islands have one of the highest lifespans on the planet. This means that there are more people who qualify as ‘seniors’ than kids under 18 years of age. 

2. Literacy in Japan is one of the highest in the world, at 99%. This means that almost all of the people in Japan know how to read and write. In comparison, the United States literacy rate is only 52%.

3. As far as population goes, Tokyo is the largest city in the world, with 37.26 million people living there. With this large of a population, Tokyo is perfectly suited for one of the biggest global events of the year: the 2020 Summer Olympics.



4. Learning how to clean is often taught in schools in Japan. In addition to mathematics, science, reading, and writing, the Japanese believe that knowing how to keep your area clean not only creates a humble mind but a useful habit.

5. In the past--and today--fruit is one of the greatest gifts you can give in Japan. This stems from past and present fruit prices in the nation, where fruits are considered a luxury item and priced accordingly. Thus, giving fruit as a gift has a very positive connotation.

6. Slurping noodles is considered polite. That’s right; contrary to American and Western customs, slurping noodles in Japan is considered to be polite, as it shows the cook that you appreciate the food they’ve made and enhances the flavor at the same time!

7. Napping at work is not only done, but it is encouraged. In fact, most employers want to see their employees napping on the job--a practice known as Inemuri--as it gives a connotation of diligence. For example, it may seem that your employee has worked so hard that they’ve come to a point of exhaustion.


Economy and Consumerism

8. In Japan, seeing a vending machine on every street corner is typical. In fact, there are almost 5 million vending machines in Japan. That’s the most in the world!

9. About 7.5 billion tons of fish are eaten in Japan each year. That’s almost 10% of the world’s catch! 

10. Japan is home to the Square Watermelon, which can be sold for around $100 a melon and usually come with cute bows or intricate wrappings. These melons are bred to be square so they are also easier to store!

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