Spam considered a luxury gift in South Korea
In the United States, if someone looked you deep in the eyes and said "I love you," and then handed you a gift box of Spam, you would most likely start laughing or crying, but that's not the case in South Korea. The pinkish ham and pork shoulder gelatin-like meat is considered a luxury and something you would get someone you really care about. A high end retail store in Seoul even proudly features the blue and yellow tins wrapped in fancy boxes.
Gift boxes are a major reason that the sales of Spam in South Korea are skyrocketing, and they have sold almost 20,000 tons, at an estimated $235 million last year. In fact, one local producer says that South Korea is now the second largest consumer of Spam just behind the United States.
One of the reasons for the food's popularity in the country is that Americans brought it over with them during the Korean War. There is even a popular dish in the country that incorporates Spam called, "Johnson's Stew" named after U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson's visit to the country in 1966. One scholar believes that the reason that Spam is cherished so much in South Korea is that it's associated with a time of great prosperity for the country.
The good old pink stuff.