Category Archives: Cooperatives

New chief of Japan’s agricultural cooperatives group determined to carry out reform for the sake of farmers

TOKYO, Aug. 12 – Toru Nakaya, who became chairman of the Central Union of Agricultural Cooperatives in August, expressed determination to accomplish self-reform of the farm coops group. In an interview with The Japan Agricultural News, Nakaya said his organization, known as JA-ZENCHU, will have active discussion with the government and the ruling Liberal Democratic Party to carry out reform in a free and unbiased way, putting farmers first. Q. How do you feel about becoming chairman of JA-ZENCHU when it is facing an extremely difficult situation? A. I have been involved in agricultural cooperative movements for a long time, but there has never been a more challenging time than … Continue reading

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Gulf Japan Food Fund invests in new bakery chain in Dubai to expand food and agricultural exports from Japan

TOKYO, Aug. 2 – On August 1, 2017, the Gulf Japan Food Fund (GJFF), a private equity fund established by the Central Cooperative Bank for Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery (the Norinchukin Bank), Mizuho Bank, and other investors, said that it invested in Yamanote Atelier Restaurant, a firm developing a new bakery business in Dubai, the U.A.E, in July this year. Yamanote Atelier Restaurant is a new bakery chain created around the concept of “Japanese bakery.” It emphasizes high quality and food safety and imports ingredients such as wheat and beverage from Japan. This was the first investment made through the fund. The investors including the Norinchukin Bank anticipate that the … Continue reading

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Chairman of Japan’s Central Union of Agricultural Cooperatives says safeguard on frozen beef imports is necessary to protect livestock industry

TOKYO, Aug. 3 – Chairman of the Central Union of Agricultural Cooperatives, known as JA-ZENCHU, Choe Okuno, commented on Japan’s latest safeguard on frozen beef imports from the U.S. and other countries. “The safeguard was imposed automatically by the laws. It’s necessary in order to protect domestic farmers and promote the livestock industry in Japan,” he said. The emergency tariffs on beef imports are triggered when quarterly beef import volume exceeds 117% of that of the previous year. It’s the first time for the safeguard to be imposed on imported beef in 14 years. The Japanese government will raise its tariff on frozen beef from the U.S., Canada, and New … Continue reading

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“JA Yaeyama” young cattle vessel carrying calves from island to island (in Yaeyama Islands, Okinawa Prefecture)

OKINAWA, July 30 ― A boat owned by an agricultural cooperative in Okinawa (JA Okinawa) is playing an important role in Yaeyama islands, which are 400 km away from the main island of Okinawa and at the southwest end of Japan. The vessel is exclusively designed for moving young cattle from an island to an island to deliver the calves produced by farmers on small islands to Ishigakijima Island. The calves will be then transported to the mainland of Japan. The ship has been in service for more than 40 years since the first JA boat was introduced. A little past noon on July 13, 2017, the vessel “JA Yaeyama” … Continue reading

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‘Nishio Matcha’ granted first trademark in overseas tea market

NISHIO, July 30 — Nishio Matcha, finely ground Japanese green tea, has been granted a trademark for the brand name by Taiwan, its first overseas registration at a time when fake matcha has been on the rise in markets across Asia and in the United States. The trademark registration aims to help the traditional product from central Japan attract new markets seeking high-quality and healthy foods. With its health benefits, matcha has been popular and used in everything including lattes, cupcakes and ice cream. The brand logo illustrates a green deep tea bowl and a bamboo tea whisk, with English letters saying “Nishio Matcha.” The Nishio Tea Cooperative, a group … Continue reading

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