Category Archives: Farm Policy

Japan’s workforce set to halve in farm sector in 2040: report

TOKYO, Jan. 16 ― The Japanese government’s new labor projection suggests that the workforce in the farm sector may shrink by more than half in 2040, if there were no growth in the country’s economy and no action to increase of working women and older workers. Low birth rates have left Japan with one of the world’s oldest and fastest ageing populations. A report released on Jan. 15 by the labor ministry’s commission on workforce said that the number of workers in the agriculture sector would drop from 2.2 million in 2017 to 1 million in 2040. The entire Japanese workforce would fall 22 percent to 52.5 million in 2040, … Continue reading

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Japan’s 2018 food exports will likely hit record 90 billion yen

TOKYO, Jan. 20 ― Japan’s food exports rose for the ninth consecutive month in November 2018, thanks to largely to appetite for wagyu beef and fruits in neighboring Asian countries, official data has showed. Total shipments of agriculture products, processed foods and seafood soared 9% to 85.2 billion yen in November from a year earlier, according to the agriculture ministry. The primary agricultural products, which constitute half of total agricultural exports, increased 12% to 52.2 billion yen. Among those products, wagyu beef jumped 39% to 2.7 billion yen, as Cambodia solidified its position as the largest destination for Japanese wagyu beef, with value doubling to 800 million yen. Wagyu beef … Continue reading

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Chinese shiitake spawn import to Japan to hit a record in 2018

TOKYO, Jan. 13 ― Japan’s imports of shiitake spawn, which are essentially mushroom seeds, will likely hit a record volume in 2018, exceeding the 2017 record, official data have shown. Shiitake are among the most popular of many varieties of mushrooms eaten by the fungi-mad Japanese. Each year, families and restaurants stew, fry and grill hundreds of tons of these brown umbrella-shaped vegetables. Shiitake spawn imports to Japan in the first eleven months through November 2018 totaled 18,650 metric tons, already exceeding the 2017 full-year import record of 15,649 metric tons, according to the finance ministry. If the December figure remains the same level a year earlier, then the imports … Continue reading

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Japan’s meat imports in 2018 likely surge to record levels

TOKYO, Dec. 30 ― Japanese farmers have faced an influx of cheap meat imports, as the country’s imports of red meat and poultry were set another new record volume in 2018, government data has showed. And that was even before the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) without the U.S., known as TPP-11, entered into force on Dec. 3o, 2018, suggesting the landmark trade pact would have knock-on effects for Japanese farming business, industry officials pointed out. Japanese meat imports totaled 1.92 million metric tons in the first 11 months through November 2018, which was 1 percent more than the same period a year ago, according to the finance ministry. The 2017 full-year … Continue reading

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Japan’s PM Abe seeks removing barriers to boost farm exports

TOKYO, Dec. 20 ― Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has stressed that his administration is pushing countries to ease up on restrictions and open their market access for Japanese agricultural products. Pointing out that China and Hong Kong have recently relaxed some import restrictions on Japanese food, Abe said: “We are cracking the door open a little wider.” The prime minister spoke at the Dec. 19 general assembly of the national council for export promotion of agricultural products, a key public-private joint initiative to boost Japanese agricultural exports. Japan has set a target of 1 trillion yen in agricultural exports in 2019. Last year, the country’s agriculture exports totaled a record … Continue reading

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