【News】 Diet members of Japan’s ruling party to launch “Rice Production Project” this spring (March 8, 2017)

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) will start a “Rice Production Project” early summer and a group of LDP Diet members learn how to carry out farm works from transplanting of rice seedlings to harvesting, Toshihiro Nikai, LDP’s Secretary-General, said at the press conference held on March 7.

Secretary-General Toshihiro Nikai took the leadership in initiating the Project, in which he has confidence, saying “It is no use talking about agricultural policies without knowing how to transplant rice seedlings.”

In this Project, young Diet members and other members elected at constituencies mostly in the Tokyo metropolitan area will join hard works at a 10-are paddy field in Ome city, Tokyo.

LDP Leader Toshihiro Nikai, remembering his childhood experience of rice transplanting at a village to which he was evacuated during wartime, told the reporters, saying “Our LDP members plan to deepen their studies on what agriculture should be. For both within and outside of Japan, LDP will reconfirm its attitude to earnestly cope with challenges facing Japanese farmers.”

The Project will be put into practice with the cooperation of Nishi-Tokyo Agricultural Cooperative (JA), Tokyo Prefectural Union of Agricultural Cooperatives, JA ZENCHU (Central Union of Agricultural Cooperatives), and National Chamber of Agriculture.

Transplanting by LDP Diet members is scheduled in June and harvesting will be done around October. A rice tasting party will also be held at the headquarters of LDP after the harvest.

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