Author Archives: The Japan Agricultural News

New Japanese cuisine goodwill ambassadors appointed, first from 18 countries

TOKYO, Jan. 26 – The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries newly appointed 36 people from 30 countries and regions as Japanese Cuisine Goodwill Ambassadors to help promote Japanese cuisine and food culture, as part of efforts to boost exports of Japan-grown farm produce. Eighteen countries including South Korea and Singapore were newly added to the list of countries and regions where the goodwill ambassadors, mainly chefs, were chosen from. Alon Than, the first ambassador to be appointed from Poland, is an owner of a Japanese restaurant and the 2015 champion of World Sushi Cup, a sushi competition for foreign chefs held by the ministry. Chosen from Spain is Andoni … Continue reading

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Eight Japanese entities ranked among top 300 cooperatives: World Cooperative Monitor

TOKYO, Jan. 27 – Eight organizations related to the Japan Agricultural Cooperatives (JA) group were ranked among the top 300 cooperatives and mutuals in the world based on turnover for 2018 in dollar terms, according to the 2020 issue of the World Cooperative Monitor report released by the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA). Newly included in the top 300 in the latest annual survey, the ninth of the kind, were JA Keizairen – prefectural economic federation of agricultural cooperatives – in three prefectures. Kagoshima came 133th, Aichi 154th and Miyazaki 193th. National Mutual Insurance Federation of Agricultural Cooperatives (JA Kyosairen) was placed fourth, followed by National Federation of Agricultural Cooperative Associations … Continue reading

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Buzz Maff YouTube channel gains 6.1 million views in first year with 364 out-of-box videos targeting younger audience

TOKYO, January 14 – A year has passed since the YouTubers from Japan’s farm ministry made their first official post on their official YouTube channel, Buzz Maff. Since its launch, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries of Japan posted one video each day about anything and everything about agriculture to gain attention. As a result, the channel garnered more than 6.1 million views in the first year to prompt many people, including the younger audience who usually have low interest in agriculture, to come and see what they have to say. One of the official YouTubers from the ministry talks only about the charms of sweet potatoes. Another sings … Continue reading

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Saga Prefecture collaborates with Hong Kong florist and confectioneries to promote Ichigosan brand strawberries

SAGA, Jan. 26 – Saga Product Promotion Public Corporation of Saga Prefecture has started to run a campaign to promote Saga’s relatively new strawberry brand “Ichigosan” to Hong Kong consumers in collaboration with a local flower shop and pastry shops. The prefectural body for promoting agricultural and livestock products produced in Saga works with the partners in Hong Kong to sell strawberry bouquets and limited-time-only strawberry desserts. Ichigosan, a strawberry brand of Saga, debuted in 2018. Hong Kong started to import it in 2019, especially for local Japanese food retailers to become the primary overseas market for Ichigosan. However, it still is a brand little-known to the local shoppers, according … Continue reading

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Support rate for Japan’s Cabinet plummets to 44 percent: The Japan Agricultural News survey

TOKYO, Jan. 12 – The approval rating for Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s Cabinet was 44 percent in The Japan Agricultural News’ monitor survey conducted in the end of last year, dropping 18 percentage points from the previous survey done in September immediately after Suga became prime minister. The disapproval rate rose 20 percentage points to 56 percent, making disapproval top approval for the first time. Only 26 percent gave high marks to the Suga Cabinet’s agricultural policies and 27 percent to the government’s COVID-19 response, resulting in a plunge in the overall support rate. Among those who support the Cabinet, 32 percent, the largest percentage and up 9 percentage points … Continue reading

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