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How do you take your air?

Unpolluted and crisp? You got it.

Canned? Mmm-kay.


The winds of change are about to sweep through the land of the rising sun with the crowning of a new emperor.

To commemorate, a company in Japan is selling the preserved air from the Heisei era, which signifies the 30-year reign of the abdicating Emperor Akihito.

The canned "Air of Heisei" hit store shelves on Monday in the Seki, Gifu Prefecture.

Each can is priced at 1,080 yen ($9.60), and producers are hoping to sell as many as 1,000 units, according to Inquirer.


The Japanese are notorious for capitalizing on special occasions at every opportunity with limited edition merchandise for demanding consumers always wanting a keepsake.

In Japan, if you don't have a tangible souvenir of an event, it may as well have never existed.



The canned air will exist as a reminder of a bygone era if you're lucky enough to snag one at a roadside shop or online.

The manufacturing company is located in Seki's "Henari" neighborhood, which is coincidentally written in the same Japanese character as "Heisei" (平成).



The company's president Minoru Inamoto told Agence France-Presse:

"Air is free of charge, but we hope people will enjoy breathing the fresh air of Heisei after the new era comes, or just keep it as a memento."

Okay, so you're really paying for the packaging.

At least it will look swell in your pantry whenever you're feeling nostalgic.




The commemorative can is Henari's way of ushering in a new dawn while expressing gratitude for the departing era with a five-yen coin, called "goen," inserted inside the can to resemble good luck.



Other companies are hoping to cash in by producing toys and other souvenirs as Emperor Akihito's eldest son Naruhito ascends to the throne on May 1, heralding in the "Reiwa" era.




Tokyo department stores can barely keep the popular gold oval coins engraved with Heisei stocked on their shelves. Confectionery stores are also getting in on the action by bringing back sweets made popular from the era.

The Reiwa era is being welcomed with exclusively labeled merchandise such as stickers, smartphone covers, T-shirts, pins and commemorative bottles of the Japanese tipple, sake.

Selling preserved air is not a new concept in Japan. Location-specific merchandise includes canned air in tourist spots like Mt. Fuji.


Some mocked the wacky souvenirs, but then admitted they would purchase the air from other eras, including the Showa period (December 25, 1926, to January 7, 1989) and the Taisho period (30 July 1912, to 25 December 1926).



While the gimmick may seem outrageous, you can't say the Japanese are not creative.

Their imagination cannot be contained; however, the air from the past can be.

Image by MOHAMMEd ALIM from Pixabay

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