While the advert is definitely funny, the decision wasn’t made lighly. Akagi Nyugyo, the manufacturers of the popsicle in question, Gari Gari Kun, was hit hard during the “oil shocks” in the 1970s and raised prices for many of their products, including their top seller at the time, Akagi Shigure–a cup of shaved ice.
But other larger competitors were able to weather the increase in production costs, and maintained their prices. As a result Akagi’s sales plummeted, pushing the company to the brink of collapsing.
To turn things around, they came up with Gari Gari Kun, a popsicle made out of shaved soda flavored ice coated in a thin layer of soda flavored ice cream. Given their experiences, Akagi has been very hesitant to raise prices.
They did increase the price of Gari Gari Kun once prior to this advert in 1991, but that was still a year after Akagi’s competitors did the same.
The song in the background is a song released in 1971 by Wataru Takada, a famous Japanese folk singer.
We have not considered raising prices at all
We will not consider raising prices within this year
A price increase is impossible for the time being
We would like to maintain prices if at all possible
We would like to delay raising prices for now
We will not approve an immediate price increase
Even if we were to raise prices, now is not the time
We want to avoid raising prices if possible
While some are saying that a price increase is inevitable,
we are still considering whether or not we will actually do so
While raising prices might be unavoidable,
it is still much too early to be doing so
We would like to consider when we might raise prices,
but we have yet to approve a price increase
We do not want to increase prices immediately
While we are hesitant to raise prices,
an increase within the year might be inevitable
A price increase might soon be inevitable
A price increase is inevitable
‥.We will be raising prices