Japan is known to be a country with various unusual traditions and one of these is to eat cake and a bucket of fried chicken from KFC with the whole family during Christmas.

Despite the fact that many Japanese did not know that cake and chicken are not necessarily Christmas meals in other countries, they still choose to celebrate the yuletide season with the 2 foods. After all, they have grown accustomed that Christmas is a season of happiness for the whole family rather than a religious celebration of the birth of a savior.

Kentucky Fried Chicken, a fast food chain that serves mostly chicken-based meals, is never as busy during the Christmas season as compared to other months of the year. In fact, Japanese order their chicken in advance as early as the end of October or else they will have to line up 6 hours during the Christmas Eve just to avail of the much coveted chicken meal.

The KFC tradition originated back in the early 1970s. This was the time when the chicken fast food chain was not yet very popular with the Japanese. They got the idea of associating fried chicken with Christmas when a non-Japanese foreigner went to the store to buy chicken as substitute for turkey. The marketing campaign became an instant hit and a tradition that would last almost half a century later.

This is incredibly surprising since most of the population in Japan are non-Christians. Japanese usually practice Buddhism, Shintoism or both as seen in their usual traditions where burials practice Buddhist ceremonies while weddings follow Shinto practices.

Despite Japan not really a Christian country, they still join the world in celebrating the yuletide season. Commercial establishments get decorated in Christmas fashion and 90% of Japanese kids believe in the legendary figure Santa Claus. There is also a sudden rise in demand for Christmas cakes with white frosting and strawberry toppings during December.