Just a day before Valentine's Day, women in Japan thronged to stores on February 13, 2013, to buy chocolates for their special partners, friends and loved ones. On the other hand, the men in Japan did not seem to have the same enthusiasm for the day.


In Japan the affection only seemed to flow one way, as most women spent time searching for gifts for their special ones, while the men sat back and waited for the box of goodies. Japan will soon be celebrating White Day, when the men have to reciprocate with a white gift. Chocolates have been available in Japan since the year 1797.

In the earlier days, chocolates were given to prostitutes by the Dutch traders as a sign of affection. Today, Japan has a booming $11 billion chocolate business, which registers high sales on special days. Fumiko, a shopper said, “I’ll buy some for my colleagues, but we all agreed not to buy fancy chocolates, or it would cost me a fortune”. The shopper added that they all decided to buy regular chocolates which were inexpensive. However, the shopper also said that she expects to spend around 10,000 yen on chocolates for the day.