History of Japanese Baseball Cards

Japanese Baseball Cards 1973-90

1976 Calbee

Baseball cards proliferated from the mid-1970s to the late 1980s.  Numerous companies produced sets ranging from 8 to 1,436 cards.  Menko were still produced in small quantities.  Many menko from the 1970s were produced on heavy stock and are thus known as “thick menko.”  None, however, dominated the market like Calbee Potato Chip cards.  In 1973, Calbee produced its first set of 91 cards.  A single card was included in each package of Calbee snack food.  Since 1973, Calbee has produced at least one baseball set each year. Oth

1977 Calbee Hank Aaron & Sadaharu Oh

Other 1970s and 1980s Issues

Beside Calbee, other major manufacturers of baseball cards during this period include Yamakatsu, NST, Nippon Ham, Takara, Pino, and IST.  You can learn more about these sets in my ebook - An Illustrated Introduction to Japanese Baseball Cards.


 1970s Cards

 1980s Cards


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