In 1954, an American food company named Swanson found its executives staring at a large problem with no easy solution ... how to sell or dispose of 260 tons of leftover Thanksgiving turkey. Borrowing an idea from airplane meals, they took compartmentalized aluminum trays and created the first “TV dinner” consisting of turkey and other various Thanksgiving sides.
With the help of a successful television marketing campaign, Swanson sold over 25 million TV dinners that next year and eventually expanded this idea by developing meals of all varieties. This idea of a quick, convenient meal in a compartmentalized tray had spread like wildfire throughout the United States!
While the TV dinner seemed revolutionary for Americans, the Japanese were well ahead of the game; compartmentalized meals called bento boxes had already existed for centuries in Japan. Bento boxes are very popular in Japanese culture, as they were established as a convenient way to eat a healthy portion-controlled meal. Read below to learn more about the importance of bento boxes in Japanese culture, then order your own from Bokksu today! We have countless snack options allowing for endless customization in our bento boxes!