Say that word out loud: konkatsu. It may remind of you a delicious Japanese dish made of pork (tonkatsu!), but it cannot be farther from that. In fact, konkatsu is the Japanese term for marriage hunting. Yes, while the western world is suffering from astronomical divorce rates, singles in Japan – young and old – are actively looking for marriage.
In the past years, statistics have consistently shown that marriage rates have been experiencing a downward spiral. Ever since the equal employment opportunity act was established in 1986, more and more Japanese women entered the corporate world. As a result, the marrying age became higher and fewer women were getting married.
Today, for some reason, people are looking for ways to find love – the kind that will end up in holy matrimony. With their busy schedules, however, singles have to engage in activities that are more aggressive in a sense. Hence the practice of konkatsu.
What happens is that those who are looking for marriage go to special hotspots throughout the country, wherein they can meet likeminded people. In konkatsu classes, singles partner up to engage in cooking lessons and food sampling, among other things. The idea is to get to know potential spouses in an intimate setting.
The term konkatsu is actually a spin off from the Japanese term meaning “job hunting.”¯ In this new trend, it is marriage that is being sought after. Japanese businesses are quick to respond to the trend, with more konkatsu bars being established to cater to those who are looking for a lifelong relationship.