TOKYO, Sept. 6 ― Younger farmers are in the front lines when it comes to work-related injuries on farm in Japan, according to a new report by researchers.
The National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NARO) examined 390 farm injury cases, complied by the agriculture ministry from last year till this May.
According to the report, the injury rate of less than aged 50 was 15.5 per 100,000 farmers. That was 1.7 times higher than that of aged 70 and over (9.2 per 100,000 farmers).
The study pointed out that younger farmers tend to have much higher risks of injury due to lack of experience.
The NARO warned there is a gross under reporting of farm accidents and injuries.
The agriculture ministry has released fatality rates on farm, but not injury cases. Statistics on fatalities don’t provide the full picture and they generally only represent the tip of the iceberg when serious non-fatal incidents are considered.
The NARO now estimates non-fatal incidents could be between 200 and 300 times of fatalities. That means there would be more than 60,000 injuries such as serious amputations and incidents causing long-term disability.
And that could put young farmers out of farming business for good, it said.