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TokyoTreat Japanese Snacks BlogInternational Women’s Day: A Talk with the Founder, Ayumi Chikamoto!

International Women’s Day: A Talk with the Founder, Ayumi Chikamoto!

Thalia HarrisThalia Harris
Published Time
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February 23, 2024

International Women’s Day is just around the corner, and we chatted with the founder, Ayumi Chikamoto! She was able to give some insight into her career, her thoughts on Japanese food and culture, and TokyoTreat itself!

Ayumi originally founded TokyoTreat in 2015 after her friends from overseas requested care packages full of unique Japanese snacks. Noticing people’s growing interest in Japanese food and culture, she made it her mission “to connect people who want to enjoy a little piece of Japan with cool and crazy snacks that…truly represent modern Japan.”

The TokyoTreat subscription box service features limited-edition snacks that change with the seasons, and especially holidays! These snacks range from chocolate to gummies, and even ramen! Thanks to this approach, people worldwide have been able to enjoy Japanese snacks!

A bunch of people gather in the streets of Tokyo with snacks from TokyoTreat.
“I would tell my 25-year-old self to approach her work while thinking about what’s expected of her.”

Ayumi Reflects on Her Career During International Women’s Day:

What advice would you give aspiring female leaders aiming to build their career positions?

I’d tell them to decide what career they want to pursue first, then develop the necessary skills and experience to achieve that goal. That’s the most straightforward way to become a leader who plays an active role in society.

What women figure(s) do you admire in your life?

I have a senior female entrepreneur who I respect. I want to be just like her because she’s positively taking an active role in building a fantastic career.

What advice would you give your 25-year-old self?

When I was 25 years old, I was a typical office worker, dreaming of starting my own business someday, but I mainly worked to care for myself. So, I started learning more about the structure of company management, from managers to employees. With that in mind, I would tell my 25-year-old self to approach her work while thinking about what’s expected of her.

Ayumi Chikamoto holds up a TokyoTreat snack box.
“Most people overseas think Japanese fast food is only sushi and nothing else. But in reality, there’s a wide variety of fast food to enjoy!”

On Japanese food and culture:

What aspect of popular Japanese culture interests you the most?

I like manga (Japanese comic books) the most! I’ve read them since childhood and still read them today, even as an adult. More specifically, I read e-comics on my days off as a way to relax!

From your personal experience, what is the most common misconception people have of Japanese food?

Most people overseas think Japanese fast food is only sushi and nothing else. But in reality, there’s a wide variety of fast food to enjoy, with ramen, rice bowls, curry, and fried chicken being the most popular. My hope is that the international community experiences all kinds of Japanese food!

An assortment of Halloween TokyoTreat snacks.
“Halloween is my favorite box theme because Japanese snacks are at their most popular…with cute packages and seasonal themes!”

On TokyoTreat

What is your business vision for TokyoTreat and its sister companies for the next five years?

Because I believe that Japanese product trends will continue to change over time, I would like to offer exciting products and make sure they’re quickly delivered to people worldwide.

Which TokyoTreat box theme from the past year is your personal favorite?

Halloween is my favorite box theme because Japanese snacks are at their most popular; local manufacturers are developing delicious products with cute packages and seasonal themes! I love planning for this event because it’s so much fun!

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Thalia Harris

Writer living in Tokyo who likes stories, music and video games. <3

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