Home > Korean Business, Korean Society, Quick Hits > Happy 빼빼로 Day!

Happy 빼빼로 Day!

Ah so it has come again, that most sacred and ancient of the traditional Korean holidays, Pepero Day. It is the day when the young and young at heart share thin, chocolate covered breadstick snacks with those they love, or like, or are casually acquainted with. The story goes that on some long past November 11th, some middle school girls in Busan exchanged boxes of 빼빼로 in the hopes that they could all be long and thin like pepero sticks (hopefully not as prone to snapping). They chose this day, because it was 11-11 and that looks like four snack sticks. That makes today especially special, or perhaps a sign of some sort of 빼빼로 Apocalypse, as it’s 11-11-11, a full third more stick-shaped numbers.

Anyways, to turn off the sarcasm, Pepero is made by the Lotte Company and may be better known to those in the States (at least those who go to World Market) by the Japanese product it copied, Pocky. I somewhat doubt the origin story of the “holiday”, as I heard similar references in Japan to Osaka middle school girls giving each other Pocky to be tall and thin, I will say the Lotte Company has done an amazing job marketing it strongly into the cultural consciousness of people. Rather than deny that they contrived the holiday, they should be proud of their gimmick turning into a full-fledged national event. I’m happy enough for it as it means that I have eaten several boxes of the snack over my life here in Korea without actually having to ever purchase any (they go relatively well with coffee).

In fact, the holiday has worked so well, that there’s even a social campaign not to eliminate it, but share it with a (supposedly) healthier alternative 가래떡 (Garaetteok) Day. Personally I am all for that as roasted 가래떡 is incredibly delicious for something that really has no flavor of its own and I am a well known lover of 떡볶이 (tteokbokki). So feel free to pick your poison, just honor the day somehow with some long, cylindrical food.

 

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  1. November 15, 2011 at 4:27 am

    I am glad that you enjoyed the 빼빼로 day. Yes, Lotte did a good job here in South Korea marketing the 빼빼로 day, thereby resulting in the great commercial success.
    At first, my reaction to the idea of celebrating Pepero day was negative. I have changed my mind since giving Pepero to others make them happy with spending little cost 🙂

  2. May 15, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    Honestly, the skin isn’t designed to have other blocks on the left. Yo871u2#&;ll probably have to go into style.css and make another div. You could try to repeat the navigation div, but I’m not positive that will work and I’m not anywhere I can test it.

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