The number of dairy cows imported from Australia and other countries are very likely to hit the highest level in the past ten years.
Japan Dairy Association or J-milk based at Chuo ward, Tokyo decided to import 960 heads of dairy cattle at most this year, while the Japanese dairy industry is facing a serious shortage of milk cows on dairy farms.
Some of prefectural dairy farmers’ organizations and large-sized dairy farms are also planning to import cows from Australia.
According to the Animal Quarantine Service of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries, imports of dairy cattle per year fluctuated in number from 300 to 1,000 heads over the past ten years.
In 2017, dairy cattle imports are expected to considerably exceed 348 heads in the previous year, because many dairy associations will import lots of dairy cows.
For instance, Kumamoto Prefectural Federation of Dairy Farmers Cooperatives has decided to import 180 heads of heifers for the first time in 18 year.
In Kumamoto prefecture, dairy cattle have been decreasing to a serious level because of retirement of aged dairy farmers as well as an influence of heavy earthquakes striking the prefecture in April 2016.