Country and Gender Differences in the Color Association with Energy Drinks: A Survey in Taiwanese and Japanese Students

Shigeharu Tanei, Wen Tseng Chu, Toshimitsu Okamura, Fu Shih Chen, Yukinori Nagakura*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study investigated differences in the color association with energy drinks between two populations in different cultures, i.e., Taiwanese and Japanese. An anonymous, self-administered paper questionnaire was administered to first-and second-year students at National Taiwan Normal University (Taiwan) and Naragakuen University (Japan). In our inter-country, gender-stratified comparison, the color selected most often in response to the question, “What color comes to your mind for energy drink label?” was red for the Taiwanese and blue for the Japanese. The color associations with energy drinks selected by 20% or more participants in at least one population and showing statistical difference were extracted as noticeable difference. The present study demonstrates that the color and energy drink functions are closely associated. Specifically, yellow and nourishment, black and stimulant, yellow and vitamin supplement, green and dietary fiber supplement, and red and iron supplement are tightly associated regardless of the country. The strong tie between cosmetic and white is specific to the Taiwanese consumers. This suggests that careful color selection based on consumers’ environmental and cultural backgrounds is important in communicating information regarding energy drink functions. It would be worth for energy drink manufacturers to consider those associations in designing labels for products.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1670
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Nov


  • Color association
  • Energy drinks
  • Inter-country difference
  • Inter-gender difference
  • Japan
  • Taiwan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Microbiology
  • Health(social science)
  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Plant Science


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