A plentiful supply of locally-grown chicory is ready in Japan

SAITAMA, Feb. 18 ― Japanese growers are harvesting chicory leaves in Saitama, one of the country’s main suppliers of the western vegetable for more than three decades. The chicory heads have fully grown out of the root and are now ready to be packaged. All this is done in early mornings or evenings to avoid daylight in order to maintain the white color of delicate leaves.

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“Sun” on wall watching over children’s smile at park created by quake-hit farmer

IWATE, Mar. 11 – The large mural measures 8 meters in height and 43 meters in width and under the colorful trees and flowers, children are holding hands with each other-the picture on the wall was painted by Saeko Fujii, a 74-year-old persimmon farmer in Kamaishi city, Iwate Prefecture, and the locals. She turned part of her farmland into the park and painted the wall of the adjacent plant with the colorful picture for the children who lost their playgrounds because of the tsunami after the Great East Japan Earthquake, The idea of painting the wall came from a word murmured by a girl. In 2012, Fujii created the park … Continue reading

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[Our Noh no Ikebana] “We express early spring through colors,” says Etsuko Wada, 56, from Tsuwano Town, Shimane Prefecture

“The good thing about Noh no Ikebana is that we can enjoy it with free ideas. It’s not just fun. It gives me new insights as I work together with friends. We show vegetables and flowers and ask each other questions, like when I should plant them or how we can cook them. I learn from others about vegetables I don’t grow or cook at home. The theme of this arrangement is “Look; I found the spring!” The materials are vegetables and flowers in early spring. Field mustard, Chinese citrons, and mimosa in spring colors are doing a great job. We used the roots of vegetables and branches of flowers … Continue reading

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Women in agriculture hand down experiences of March 2011 earthquake and tsunami

FUKUSHIMA/MIYAGI, March 9 – Eight years have passed since the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, and women engaging in agriculture in the disaster-hit Tohoku region are trying to hand down their experiences to future generations to raise awareness toward disaster prevention. Storytelling with picture boards Yoko Oka, 58, who evacuated to the city of Fukushima from Namie, Fukushima Prefecture, following the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant accident, tells her stories as a disaster victim using kamishibai paper picture boards. Her storytelling spread through word of mouth and now she travels nationwide half the month. She even performed in France in March 2017. “It is my role to convey the grief … Continue reading

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TPP-11 gives beef exporters trade deal boosts in Japan

TOKYO, Feb. 28 ― Japan’s total beef imports jumped 42 percent in January, one month after the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) without the U.S., also known as TPP-11, began, illustrating meat exporters enjoy the landmark trade deal in the Japanese market. According to the finance ministry, beef imports amounted to 50,574 metric tons in January, compared with 35,631 metric tons in the same month a year earlier. The January figure was the highest month in the past 10 years. “It is unusual to break the 50,000 ton of barrier in January, a month that is not particularly the period for strong demand of beef in Japan,” said an official from a … Continue reading

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