CONTRIBUTED BY STACI HAWLEY
If you’re like me – you never think twice about it. Any kind of meat product in a can freaks me out. I’ve never been a fan of hot dogs or bologna, mostly due to the thought of the ingredients, but also because of that tacky residue that it leaves on the roof of your mouth. Then you move to Okinawa, and behold SPAM. It’s everywhere. It’s strategically placed among other fine delicacies at your local Japanese grocer. It’s in all forms. It’s in all varieties. Does this really have to be the piece of American culture that we’ve left here? Yikes.
How did Spam make its way to Okinawa?
Apparently, Spam was brought to Okinawa from the Americans as emergency aid after the war. It’s been popular here in Okinawa ever since.
What is SPAM?
Indulge in all things Spam. The experts at Hormel have done a fine job at entertaining as well as educating HERE.
How is it used?
Here in Okinawa, you can easily purchase “onigiri” stuffed with SPAM & EGG.
Behold GOYA AND SPAM.
And best of all, you can wash it down with a SPAMTINI.
So as an American, I feel guilty. Okinawa is famously known as having some of the highest percentages of centenarians, and yet we’ve introduced SPAM, Taco Rice and other fast food chains that encompass the island and clog arteries. Okinawa health officials claim that the Western diet is partly responsible for making Okinawans heavier, and of course making them more prone to all the obesity related diseases. So, America is definitely a land of contrasts. And I suppose we can’t predict what parts of our culture have an impact. So SPAM it is.
My guilt has subsided upon researching that Hormel has infested other corners of Asia as well (no offense Hormel friends). Behold this restaurant SPAMJAM, a franchise in the Philippines entirely devoted to Spam.