TOMODACHI Alumni Regional Framework Theme Event in Tohoku-Hokkaido Region Team A: Learning How Scent Reaches Consumers and Feeling the Nature of Hokkaido Through Scented Soap
On November 22, 2020, the Tohoku-Hokkaido Region, Team A held an online TOMODACHI Alumni Regional Framework Theme Event. The event, “Learn How the Power of Scent Reaches You,” was organized by Hiromi Waragai, Regional Leader, and Nanako Saito, Regional Mentor and was joined by 20 TOMODACHI Alumni including general participants across Japan. The event aimed to help participants recognize the potential of scent through a lecture and exchanging opinions on the theme scent, which fills our lives as we spend more time at home, particularly in this time of COVID-19.
The event began with opening remarks by Public Affairs Officer Ryan Ingrassia, U.S. Consulate General in Sapporo. In the first half of the event, Ms. Yuko Yoneda, Director, Fragrance Marketing & CIMR Department, Takasago International Corporation gave a lecture titled “The Creation of Scent – How Fragrance is Produced from Images -.” She talked about COVID-19’s influence on the flavor and fragrance market and the process of producing a scented product from images.
The lecture was followed by the participants’ questions, such as, “Does the spread of COVID-19 change the need for scents? How?” “Do various kinds of scents in the same space impact each other?” “Can a particular person be a trend setter for scents?” and “Is there any development in using scents for seniors and medical treatment?” The lecturer answered all of the questions.
In the latter half of the event, participants split into groups to discuss the lecture and exchange their opinions on the links between scents and their lives and experiences. They also exchanged their opinions on the “scents that represent Hokkaido,” while smelling real scented soaps made by Hiromi Waragai, Regional Leader, and Nanako Saito, Regional Mentor, and sent to the participants prior to the event. The selection of these scented soaps was based on opinions shared at the Welcome Event in June. During the event, participants discussed and chose “gentle scents” and “powerful scents” as “scents that represent TOMODACHI.” Then they discussed the type of scent that represents the image of Hokkaido and finally voted for the best scent for the image of Hokkaido. Many of them voted for the “powerful scent.” They shared that the “gentle scent” represented flower fields and the “powerful scent” represented the vastness and trees in Hokkaido.
Several participants said, “I was interested in the analysis of scent representing personality. I want to make a fragrance that represents me,” “The uses for medical treatments were very interesting. For example, if there is a comfortable scent in school, I wonder if more students will want to go,” and “I have rediscovered the importance of scents we can’t recognize because our lives are full of scent. I want to imagine where a fragrance came from and enjoy it when I have a product.” Hiromi Waragai, Regional Leader, commented, “We learned what we need in the time of COVID-19 and the impression of Hokkaido by hearing the opinions of participants exploring the theme scent. I hope that scent’s potential will be fully realized in the near future.”
The event was held as a part of the TOMODACHI Alumni Regional Framework, the TOMODACHI Generation Alumni Leadership Program supported by Prudential.