[Joy of Noh no Ikebana] Let’s show our “Omotenashi” to guests to Tokyo 2020 with Noh no Ikebana arrangements

The year of the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics Games has come. “Let’s welcome the athletes and guests from abroad with our Noh no Ikebana!” A Tokyo-based Noh no Ikebana Group is trying to create the nationwide movement to celebrate the 2020 Games with Noh no Ikebana arrangements. Here, we share some of their initiatives and attractions. -Noh no Ikebana Group in Tokyo: we want to show that Japan is a nation with people with warmth. “Tokyo is going to welcome a great number of international guests for the Olympics and Paralympics games. With our Noh no Ikebana arrangements featuring our lovely agricultural products and old farm instruments, we want to … Continue reading

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Farm ministry’s official YouTube channel opens to show more about Japan’s agriculture

TOKYO, Jan. 8 – The farm ministry of Japan launched a new YouTube channel called Buzz Maff on January 7, 2020. The contents of Buzz Maff are created by ministry officials, who voluntarily gathered to plan, design, and create one streaming video a day for the online video sharing website. Its stories feature agricultural products and life in farming towns and villages. Its targets are not limited to young Japanese, and it aims to create a buzz among viewers including foreign nationals living in Japan. There are 14 teams of in-house creators, and some stories are already available on YouTube. “An ordinary sweet potato may look different after you’ve seen … Continue reading

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Japan’s fiscal budget exceeds 100 trillion yen two years in a row Agriculture and fishery related spending in fiscal 2020 to reach 2.3 trillion yen

TOKYO, Dec. 21 – Japan’s cabinet has approved a draft budget for fiscal 2020 on December 20, 2019. The general account budget for the next fiscal year starting in April topped 100 trillion for the second straight year and hit a record high of 102.66 trillion yen. Social security costs swelled due to the rise in medical expenses, while the medical cost is growing because of the aging population and the introduction of free preschool education program after the consumption tax hike. The budget also includes agricultural spending of 2.31 trillion yen, which is up 10 billion yen compared to fiscal 2019. It exceeded previous year’s expenditure for the second … Continue reading

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One year after TPP: Japan sees big surge in meat and fruits import, wariness prevailing ahead of US-Japan trade deal

TOKYO, Dec. 31 – One year has passed since the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) took effect on December 30, 2018. Under the 11-country trade pact, duties on certain products were reduced or eliminated. Its signatories, primarily meat and fruits producing countries, have aggressively expanded their access to Japan, and Japanese farmers were thrown into a market that is freer than ever before. Japan has also signed the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union (EU) and will sign the US-Japan trade deal on January 1, 2020. Marked wariness is prevailing among Japanese. -Canadian pork and beef: exports to Japan expanding “Japan has become the largest importer of Canadian products, … Continue reading

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US-Japan trade deal takes effect on Jan 1

TOKYO, Jan. 1 – The US-Japan trade agreement entered into effect on January 1, 2020. Immediately, Japan lowered tariffs on US products, including beef and pork, to the level equivalent to the rates under the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP). For Japan, the bilateral pact is the third significant trade agreement that follows the TPP and the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union (EU). In the fiscal year 2018, the total value of agricultural imports from the member countries of the three trade agreements to Japan exceeded 99% of the total. With the new pact, however, the country is granting its competitors greater access to its agricultural market than … Continue reading

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