I'm not sure if its to say thank you to someone in particular who prepared the meal or, if it's saying thank you to nature? God? ..Supermarket?
Or maybe its to thank everyones hard work that earns them the food they feed to the family? This one sounds about right I think.
I once went out for a meal with my Japanese friend called Aki and she mentioned how confused she was when she first came to england and no-one over here said anything like .. Thank you for the food or anything. She thought it was quite impolite at first.
I just love how polite the Japanese are!
Here are some table manners that you should follow if you are in Japan:
(I learnt this in my Japanese lesson and found it interesting)
- It's alright to slurp noodles/ramen in Japan because it shows that you are enjoying their noodles!
- In Japan, people share several dishes together. So when you grab some food from the shared dishes, you must use the opposite end of your chopsticks. Unless they already have a spare pair for everyone to use.
- Like other countries, it is very rude to burp during a meal.
- Never stab your chopsticks into your rice! This will remind them of death and funerals. So keep your chopsticks on the side.
- Blowing your nose at a table is considered bad mannered
- When you eat rice from a bowl, you hold the bowl towards your mouth whilst scooping it in with your other hand using the chopsticks.
And once they finished their meal they would say "Gochisoosama" (Thank you for the food)