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Are Japanese peanuts known as Mexican peanuts in Japan? This is the love story behind this snack

1 26 117
04.08.2021

There is no soccer game, meeting with friends or bar in Mexico that does not have a plate of Japanese peanuts, as this snack is a basic ingredient of any social gathering. However, these nuts layered with flour and sautéed with spices were actually created in this country. So why do we call them Japanese peanuts ?

The reason hides a beautiful story of hard work and entrepreneurship.

#HispanicHeritageMonth Shoutout to Japanese immigrant Yoshigei Nakatani inventing Japanese peanuts * in Mexico * in the 1950s pic.twitter.com/uJjO8QC5IG

It all started when in 1932 the Gueiyamaru ship arrived at the port of Manzanillo, Colima. In it, several Japanese citizens traveled in search of new opportunities that could eventually take them to the United States. Among all the immigrants was Yoshigei Nakatani , a man who would find love and a new "life fueled by peanuts" in Mexico.

In that pre-World War II era, only Japanese who had been invited by a Mexican resident were allowed to enter Mexico; Nakatani came up with a button company called El Nuevo Japan .

Yoshihei Nakatani Moriguchi's entry certificate to Mexico / Photo: Museum of Japanese Americans of the City of Los Angeles via Unknown Mexico

In his autobiography "That Tree Still Standing," Nakatani recalls the exact moment when he got off the ship on the Mexican coast.

In a world much less globalized than today, the cultural shock that the Japanese experienced when they reached the West was very strong. Several migrants married a Mexican woman........

© Entrepreneur


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