Comparison: Potato Farm Jaga Pokkuru vs. Calbee Jagabee
When it comes to fried potato sticks available in the snack and candy section of supermarkets in Japan, Calbee Jagariko and Calbee Jagabee are especially popular.
As their names indicate, both are manufactured and sold by the leading Japanese snack food company, Calbee, but they are different in texture.
Calbee Jagariko Salad Flavor
These Jagariko fries have a hard crispy texture, while the Jagabee stick is soft and crunchy.
Compared to the former, the latter snack is close to Jaga Pokkuru, a product also by Calbee but carried under the brand of Potato Farm.
Potato Farm Jaga Pokkuru vs. Calbee Jagabee
Today, I prepared those Potato Farm Jaga Pokkuru and Calbee Jagabee for comparison.
Both the potato fries are lightly salted. And at first glance, they look like the same thing.
So first, I checked the ingredients. Based on the lists and Japanese Wikipedia,
Jaga Pokkuru uses 100 percent Hokkaido-grown Non-GMO potatoes, while Jagabee is North American Non-GMO potatoes.
The former comes with natural salt from the Sea of Okhotsk, while the maker seasons Jagabee with common salt, as there is no note on that.
Nonetheless, Calbee Jagabee is so good with the right amount of salt. These sticks look fresh and are pleasant, like french fries.
On the other hand, the maker deep-fries Jaga Pokkuru with the skin intact to retain its flavor, and these sticks look homemade.
The two have almost the same crunchiness, but the former tastes slightly better thanks to its salt.
Regarding costs, the suggested retail price of Jaga Pokkuru (180 g) is 885 yen, while Calbee Jagabee (80 g) is 227 yen.
Even per gram, the former (4.92 yen) is higher than the latter (2.84 yen).
Where to Buy
Nowadays, both are available on Amazon.com. However, Potato Farm Jaga Pokkuru is originally a Hokkaido-limited product known as a souvenir or gift.
In contrast, Calbee Jagabee is a more casual, everyday snack bought at most supermarkets around the country.
Even though Potato Farm Jaga Pokkuru is pricey compared to Calbee Jagabee, they are similar in taste and texture.
But if I had to choose, my recommendation would be Jaga Pokkuru.