Which Company Makes the BEST Pepero??

Category : Food/Nightlife / Korean Cultures / Surviving in Korea
Nov 26, 2014
 
The holiday madness outside of 7/11

Introduction

In honour of Pepero Day on Sunday, I decided to do a short survey.  The original maker of Pepero is Pocky a Japanese company but in Korea, Lotte first produced the cookies.  Now other companies have reproduced this treat and on Pepero Day (Nov 11) Peperos will be shared among children, friends and couples across the country.  As a cultural writer, I strive to dig deep on hard hitting issues and today I was curious.

I wanted to find out for once and for all:  Which company makes the best Pepero?

Hypothesis

Considering that Lotte is the original maker of cookie in Korea, I hypothesize that Pepero by Lotte will be the most delicious.  I will compare the original variety of Pepero with a plain cookie stick and a plain chocolate coating.

The Original Pepero By Lotte

Materials

-printouts of the survey (designed by me)

-a pen

-4 boxes Peperos from 4 different companies, 1 stick from each brand for each person

-Undestroyed boxes from each brand

 
The contestants waiting to be sampled.

Procedure

First I purchased 4 boxes of Peperos made by different companies, Lotte, Meiji, Crown and HaeTae.  I chose the original variety.  Each box cost 990won and I got a great deal too.  It was buy 3 get 1 free at Homeplus Express!  Then I developed the survey and made copies.

The survey had 5 questions:

A    B    C    D    They all look the same.

A    B    C    D    They all have the same amount of chocolate.

A    B    C    D    They all have a good cookie part.

A    B    C    D    They all taste exactly the same. I have no preference.

HaeTae    Meiji     Lotte    Crown

I assigned an alphabet letter to each brand:

A= Crown

B= Haetae

C= Lotte

D= Meiji

In order to have a larger survey sample, I also participated.  I had my coworker give me the blind test.  The letters for my test were (which he told me after):

A= Meiji

B= Lotte

C= Haetae

D= Crown

Next I placed each Pepero stick on a napkin in the order of A, B, C, D.  My coworker did the same for me.  I gave out the printed survey and the Peperos to my coworkers and they filled out the questionnaire and sampled each Pepero stick.  They returned the forms to me and I tallied the results.

 


You can analyze the design of each box with these pictures. Lotte was the all around winner!


Results

The following is the information from the survey.

Me (Lindsey)

Anna

Hyebin

Easan

Gavin

Overall Rank

Overall Rank

Overall Rank

Overall Rank

Overall Rank

1. HaeTae

1. Lotte

1. Lotte

1. HaeTae

1. Lotte

2. Lotte

2. Meiji

2. HaeTae

2. Meiji

2. Crown

3. Crown

3. HaeTae

3. Crown

3. Lotte

3. HaeTae

4. Meiji

4. Crown

4. Meiji

4. Crown

4. Meiji

Cookie Look: HaeTae

Cookie Look: Lotte

Cookie Look: HaeTae

Cookie Look: Same

Cookie Look: Lotte

Design: Lotte

Design: Lotte

Design: Lotte

Design: Meiji

Design: Crown

 

The Sticks! Here there are 2 of each stick (Lotte, HaeTae, Meiji, Crown in that order).
 

Analysis

The results indicate the Lotte is indeed the winner.  Three people ranked Lotte first.  Meiji is the clear looser as three people ranked it last.  I am going to claim that HaeTae comes second because it received 2 first place rankings and 1 second place ranking.  That means Crown is third.

As for the look of the cookie, there is a tie between Lotte and HaeTae.  The best box design goes to Lotte with an overall majority of 3 votes.

I decided not to tally the other 2 questions in the survey because they don’t matter and I got lazy.  It’s a good think my major wasn’t science in university.

Conclusion

This blind test concludes that my hypothesis was indeed correct.  WOOT!  I love being right!  Lotte makes the most delicious Peperos.  Lotte Pepero has been around for decades, since 1983 so it is no surprise that it has perfected the recipe.  I noticed that my coworker Anna was consistent across the board.  She chose Lotte for every answer so I asked her about her choices.  She replied, “When I was young I got used to the taste of Lotte, so of course I picked it now.”  I guess traditions die hard and childhood memories last a lifetime.

In terms of taste, Lotte was chosen first or second by everyone except for Easan.  Gavin said he “felt the combination of chocolate and cookie tasted the best”.  Hyebin mentioned the “chocolaty taste” of Lotte.  I thought it would have been number one except that the chocolate coating looked a bit dusty and that threw me for a loop.

Overall the design of the Lotte box was favored. However, I noticed that the females chose Lotte across the board while the males chose another box.  Easan addressed this in his answer; he wrote “I like the package (of Meiji) which has simple but strong fonts with contrast color background.  Lovely images might be preferred by girls; however, it just doesn’t work the same on me.”  Easan was honest and there might be something to his theory.  The design of the Lotte box has clean lines and smooth features.  It is not childish or bright.  Hyebin commented that the Lotte box is “simple” and Anna said it is “original”.  I like the Lotte box because it looks “classy”.  I also like the HaeTae box because it has Rilakkuma on the front and appeals to my inner 5 year old.

This holiday season when you are trying to decide which gift basket to get your loved one or which box of Peperos to send to your Pepero Day Secret friend, go with the original Lotte brand.  Your special someone won’t be disappointed and you can be pleased that you chose only the best for the people you care about!  Whatever you do, don’t buy them Meiji Peperos.  They might break up with you.  Happy Holidays!

 

Image Source

Tags : Snacks.

Lindsey lived and worked in Seoul, South Korea for over 5 years. While there, she dabbled in different areas of work and explored the culture. She spent time teaching elementary students, business English to adults and high school students about college preparation. She also studied Korean, wrote blogs and tasted as many foods as she possibly could including fermented skate fish. Over the years, Lindsey developed a love for Korea and the culture. She is keen to share her knowledge of Korea with others and she will always consider Korea a second home.

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