Category Archives: Cooperatives

Norinchukin Bank to establish an investment subsidiary

TOKYO, Aug. 11 – Norinchukin Bank announced on Aug. 10 that it will set up a subsidiary specializing in investment in an effort to invest more in unlisted companies. It plans to launch a 39-billion-yen fund in October to help improve its own profitability, as well as supporting growth of firms in the food and agriculture sectors and contributing to digitalization of agricultural cooperatives in Japan, known as the JA group. The new company, Norinchukin Capital, will be capitalized at 100 million yen and will be wholly owned by Norinchukin Bank. Norinchukin Capital will operate two different funds to increase the value of companies it invests in and then obtain … Continue reading

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Wakayama farm coop worker wins contest for men promoting snacks

WAKAYAMA, May 1 – Aki Okazaki, 25, who works at an agricultural cooperative in Wakayama Prefecture, won an online contest participated by male employees from 30 confectionery makers nationwide promoting snacks of their companies. At the contest, Okazaki, a worker at JA Kinan, promoted dried Japanese plums, the farm coop’s new product. “I am honored,” Okazaki said. “I would like to make use of this achievement to promote sales of local specialties.” The contest, organized by confectionery firm Yamaboshiya Co., Ltd., solicited votes online between late March and mid-April and announced the results on April 23. It received 15,325 votes. “To be honest, I was quite surprised by the result … Continue reading

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Farm coop in Kagoshima promotes eco-friendly prewashed rice

TOKYO, March 29 – In an effort to preserve the beautiful sea of Amami in Kagoshima Prefecture, a local agricultural cooperative and a rice producer have been conducting a campaign since last December to promote purchases of prewashed rice. The initiative by JA Amami and Kagoshima Pearl Rice Co., Ltd., has proved successful, with the sales of prewashed rice at their stores between December and February totaling 51,140 tons, up 36.6 percent from the same period a year before. The ratio of prewashed rice reached 35.7 percent of the total sales, up 7.6 percentage points. “As people understand the benefits of prewashed rice, we are seeing more repeat purchases,” said … Continue reading

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Japan’s agricultural cooperative organizations sign deal on business tie-up with convenience store chain FamilyMart

TOKYO, March 17 – The National Federation of Agriculture Cooperative Associations (JA ZEN-NOH), the marketing arm of Japan’s agricultural cooperative (JA) group, and Norinchukin Bank, the group’s financial arm, announced on March 16 that they have signed a business tie-up deal with Itochu Corporation and FamilyMart Co., Ltd. on sales and product development of farm produce. They will cooperate on boosting sales of homegrown agricultural products at FamilyMart convenience stores. They are also planning to make FamilyMart’s cashless payment app FamiPay usable at the JA group’s facilities including farmer’s stores. JA ZEN-NOH and Norinchukin Bank acquired FamilyMart’s stocks worth 57 billion yen — 10 billion yen by JA ZEN-NOH and … Continue reading

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NohTube channel welcomes new members and winning popularity by showing real farmers’ lives

TOKYO, Feb. 16 – A YouTube channel of the Youth Group of the Japan Agricultural Cooperatives (JA Group) welcomed six new members. The NohTube channel, it’s called, is now run by 12 “NohTubers” and posts four videos per month instead of two in 2020. (Noh means farming in Japanese.) As of February 15, 2021, it has 33 movies, some receiving more than 40,000 views. “The more efforts we make, the more we gain. That’s a good part of being a farmer, a cattle grower, and a domestic animal inseminator,” a 45-year-old NohTuber, Iki Fujiyama, said in one of his videos. Fujiyama is a domestic animal inseminator and cattle grower in … Continue reading

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