【News】1,000 farmers on tractors gather in Seoul to call for President Park’s resignation (Nov. 26, 2016)

[Anseong, South Korea/ By Zhezhu Jin, The Japan Agricultural News Staff Writer] More than a thousand farming tractors gathered in Anseong city, Gyeonggi-do, in the suburb of Seoul on Nov. 25, as farmers from Gyeongsangnam-do and Jeollanam-do, the two southernmost provinces of South Korea, traveled north, heading towards the Blue House where the presidential office and residence are located. On their way to Seoul, they protested against President Park Geun-hye and her administration’s failure in farm policy, claiming that their business conditions are getting severer than ever because of plunging rice prices and market liberalization under free trade agreements signed with other countries. The farmers left Jeollanam-do on Nov. 15 … Continue reading

Posted in Food and Agriculture, Photo News | Comments Off on 【News】1,000 farmers on tractors gather in Seoul to call for President Park’s resignation (Nov. 26, 2016)

【News】 Avian flu outbreaks confirmed in poultry houses in Aomori and Niigata prefectures (Nov. 30, 2016)

The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) announced that highly contagious avian flu outbreaks were confirmed at a poultry farm in Sekikawa village, Niigata prefecture, as well as at a duck farm in Aomori city, Aomori prefecture, on November 29. The avian influenza outbreaks were confirmed in Japan for the first time in a year and ten months. Experts have given a warning to poultry farmers and others in the country that an overall epidemic prevention must be strengthened at every poultry farm, saying, “Judging from latest outbreaks in Japan and neighboring countries, it is clear that virus concentrations in our natural environment are getting higher. We have a … Continue reading

Posted in Others | Comments Off on 【News】 Avian flu outbreaks confirmed in poultry houses in Aomori and Niigata prefectures (Nov. 30, 2016)

【Opinion】The Regulatory Reform Promotion Council proposal – argument which ignores the cooperative principles (Nov. 22, 2016)

[By Tetsuro Shimizu, Director of Norinchukin Research Institute’s Basic Research Division] The recent proposals by a working group under the government’s Regulatory Reform Promotion Council are completely irrational, something that lacks understanding for the principles of joint sales and procurement which have been built up over the years by cooperatives. The proposals indicate the bargaining power could be taken away from farmers and primary agricultural coops which have organized a federation in order to gain an advantage in price negotiations. Following the conclusion of the North American Free Trade Agreement, Mexico dismantled the National Company of Popular Substistence (CONASUPO), its state trader of agricultural products, and allowed major grain marketers … Continue reading

Posted in Cooperatives | Comments Off on 【Opinion】The Regulatory Reform Promotion Council proposal – argument which ignores the cooperative principles (Nov. 22, 2016)

【News】 Prime Minister Abe ask advisory panel to monitor reform progresses to be made by ZEN-NOH (Nov. 29, 2016)

The Council for Promotion of Regulatory Reform, Government’s advisory panel, chaired by Hiroko Ota, a professor at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies, made an announcement on its final recommendation on Japanese agricultural reform on November 28. At the meeting of the Council, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pointed out that a number of challenges should be tackled by ZEN-NOH and other agricultural cooperative organizations in the country. With regard to ZEN-NOH (National Federation of Agricultural Cooperative Associations) or a national business organization of agricultural cooperatives (JAs), Prime Minister Abe reiterated that it should promote self-reforms of its business system with determination of being reborn as a new organization, saying, … Continue reading

Posted in Cooperatives | Comments Off on 【News】 Prime Minister Abe ask advisory panel to monitor reform progresses to be made by ZEN-NOH (Nov. 29, 2016)

【News】 Rice output target fixed at 7.35 million tons for 2017, 80 thousand tons less than this year (Nov. 29, 2016)

Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) set a rice output target, on November 28, for the year 2017 at 7.35 million tons (brown rice), 80 thousand tons less than that for 2016. The production target was fixed on the basis of a current trend showing an annual decrease in consumption of some 80 thousand tons. MAFF also announced a voluntary supply reduction target of 7.33 million tons, which is to be achieved by some farmers voluntarily increasing their set-aside areas of paddy fields more than expected. The 2017 target of rice production is the last one that will be fixed by the Government. MAFF will cease to make … Continue reading

Posted in Food and Agriculture | Comments Off on 【News】 Rice output target fixed at 7.35 million tons for 2017, 80 thousand tons less than this year (Nov. 29, 2016)