A method for targeting white-backed plant-hoppers—insects that are particularly harmful to rice—is also under development. This mechanical rice planter is called a rice transplanter. An efficient farm man-agement system for appropriate farm work plans that enable the manage-ment of many separated small farms is also needed to reduce rice production costs. Among the benefits: lower production costs, higher income and a workaround for the country's chronic manpower shortage. In 1971, a Japan Organic Agriculture Associationwas established. Japan's farmers adopt smart technology to streamline rice growing. “We feel that introducing a new skill set such as this could provide some benefit to the shrinking labor pool within agriculture. This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau. According to the Statistics Bureau of the Ministry of International Affairs and Communications, forestland and fields account for the largest portion of the nation’s surface area—about 250,000 square kilometers or 67 percent. One major concern that Katsumata is trying to address is the size of the rice production market. Because drone technology changes so rapidly, the company uses various types of tech and won’t commit to one product. “If I can engage with high-conscious customers and partners worldwide, Japanese farmers will be motivated to grow rice organically.”, Attracting younger generations of farmers is a continuous problem. Toyota brings the cloud to rice farming it technology modernizes one of Japan's oldest traditions Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) will this month begin large-scale testing of a new cloud-based agricultural IT management tool ("Housaku Keikaku") through the Rice Growers Improvement Network* in the Aichi and Ishikawa prefectures of Japan. With the new technology, "we will be able to reduce working hours by about an hour per day and it will help us expand further," said the company's president, Satoshi Tanaka. “The farmer can go straight to the problem detected, requiring fewer staff overall.”. That’s a lot of land to manage with a dwindling labor force. "Although the [cost] reduction progressed, thanks to expanded [farm] scale, that seems to have reached its limit recently as it has become difficult to find people due to the labor shortage," said an official with the ministry's grain division. The technique travelled from southern China, crossing the Korean Strait via the south of the Korean Peninsula, and was first established in northern Kyushu. "It's only a matter of time before the price for 60 kg of rice falls below 10,000 yen ($93)," said Fukuhara Farm Chairman Shoichi Fukuhara. Grow organic and we will buy. Cookie Policy Japanese consumers need to make up their minds, GMOs or pesticides. “Not all organic rice can be harvested each year. Japan have created so many incredible things in that good way and even help the society better. By continuing to browse this website, you accept cookies which are used for several reasons such as personalizing content/ads and analyzing how this website is used. Particularly for Japanese rice, this technology can help make the sector more competitive. Another feature that James highlighted is the chemical-free bug zapper attachment, which hangs from the drone as it flies low over crops. Carbon capture a tool in climate fight, but at what cost? Another 50,000 square kilometers—or 12 percent—is used for agriculture. Nikkei Inc. No reproduction without permission. Also it is a highly labor intensive occupation. Very intelligent use of drones for farming. Exacerbating the matter, in 2016, the child population (0–14 years) was 15.78 million (12.4 percent of the total population), the lowest level on record. Currently the maximum for 1 person operations in N.A. For example, a rice mill manufacturer has developed a technology that mills rice which doesn’t need washing to cook. Not surprisingly, much of the new technology is targeting rice, Japan’s largest crop by value. Please review our A huge productivity problem. Rice-paddy farming came to Japan approximately 3,000 years ago. JapanToday Restaurants and food chains using this type of rice save water remarkably. Remove Ads Advertisement. The company expanded its operation by leasing adjacent farmland, but its growth slowed as the farm became too big for the available workforce. The productive-age population (15–64 years) has been in decline since 1993, now totaling 76.56 million, or 60.3 percent. States respond to Texas bid to overturn U.S. election at Supreme Court, Supreme Court rejects Texas lawsuit and Trump bid to overturn election loss, Japan to begin COVID-19 vaccinations on reservation basis, 2,796 new cases of coronavirus reported in Japan; 572 in Tokyo, China slaps more taxes on Australian wine amid tension. Modern Rice Cultivation from Japan. Email: editor@japantoday.com Fukuhara Farm, in central Japan's Shiga Prefecture, introduced an automated rice transplanter last spring, aiming to reduce labor costs and increase production of the low-priced rice varieties that many restaurant operators prefer. In fiscal 2019, the ministry launched the first smart farming demonstration project for rice cultivation. The number of households with commercial farmers * has fallen drastically from 2.3 million in 2000 to 1.3 million in 2015, and is projected to decrease by half of that figure in the next ten years. OPTiM Corporation’s Agri Drone is another product making headway in this space. Future drones may be able to record the height of a crop from above, or view root structures.”. This technology will be especially useful in Japan, where rice is so critical to the market. “We hope that this agriculture technology can increase the appeal of farming for young people.”, But there are challenges to using new technology in farming, and Anderson sees three audiences for which education is critical. Sponsored content. It was originally created as part of a three-way collaborative agreement with Saga Prefecture and Saga University. Those aged 65 years and over have outnumbered the child population since 1997. This technology, he explained, is particularly helpful for what he calls “difficult” farming—namely, organic. Smart farming may help, but so far high-tech has had biggest impact in vegetable cultivation; progress has been slower with rice growing. Rice is highly differentiated across Japan, with each prefecture cultivating its own subvariety. Katsumata also said one of his core focuses is education. In Japan, an aging population means that the number of farmers is dwindling. And production costs have been creeping higher since the 2014 season, with consumers increasingly preferring premium brands that are more expensive to grow. From rooftop gardens for urban residents to engage in agriculture, to green curtains using edible species for insulation of public buildings, to computer-based indoor plant growing, new forms of urban farming are emerging. The future of farming: Japan goes vertical and moves indoors. How smart can agriculture be. “The overall goal of the agreement is to modernize the agricultural industry in Saga, and drones were seen as a way to reduce labor and improve crop care,” Leslie James, a member of the promotion team of the Platform Department at OPTiM Corporation Tokyo Head Office, told The ACCJ Journal. IT Technology Modernizes One of Japan’s Oldest Traditions Toyota City, Japan, April 4, 2014―Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) will this month begin large-scale testing of a new cloud-based agricultural IT management tool (“ Housaku Keikaku ”) through the Rice Growers Improvement Network* in the Aichi and Ishikawa prefectures of Japan. Custom Media publishes The ACCJ Journal for the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan. Rice occupies an emotional place in Japanese … “Aigamo method” which allows for the production of organic rice while relying on less manual labor. Sign up to our newsletters to get our best stories delivered straight to your inbox. Rice prices hit 6-year high as Thailand and Vietnam face drought, Japan sake makers to adopt blockchain to fight Asian counterfeits, Japanese organic products maker turns cow urine into gold, Rice cooker maker Zojirushi fights overseas fund's board pick. Fax: +81 3 5561 7756 Spread is Japan's largest vertical farm, a unique blend of agriculture and industry, and it grows and ships out produce year-round. And although exports hit an record annual record in 2019, sales "are limited to a few affluent people," said an official at a major rice wholesaler. Farming of specific and repeated areas of land occurred from c. 4,000 BCE. A method of rice farming that relies on ducks to eat insects and weeds has been in the news recently. “However, drones are gradually being used for crop growth and sculpting services, using a multi-spectrum camera.”. It’s an education for future farmers.” Custom Media publishes The ACCJ Journal for the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan. GMO rice holds great promise in increasing productivity and reducing the need for pesticides. But changes are afoot. 1-8-1 Higashi-Azabu But production costs have stopped falling over the past five years or so. Katsumata is looking to grow the number of farmers involved to more than 10 by April this year. They are offering participants drone flying lessons, use of their analysis apps, support for agricultural tech trials, and more. TOKYO -- Smart farm technology holds great promise for farmers struggling to grow Japan's staple grain while wrestling with low prices. Improving rice exports may help offset shrinking consumption in Japan, which is declining by 80,000 tons per year. Yamaha began developing pilotless drones in 1983 at the request of the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and completed its first utility-use unmanned helicopter, the R-50, in 1987. Higashi-Azabu IS bldg, 4F By renting equipment to agricultural cooperatives and others across the country, the ministry will study the effectiveness of the new techniques in lowering costs. Wet-field rice agriculture was introduced into Japan between the Final Jōmon and the Early Yayoi periods. According to Japan's agriculture ministry, the average production cost nationwide for rice-growing households and corporations stood at 15,352 yen per 60-kg bag in 2018, down 20% from 30 years earlier. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts. Using it, farmers can eliminate more than 50 common varie­ties of pests that come out only at night. "There have been almost no examples of [farmers] introducing the [smart farming] equipment, such as the sale of machines and use of related services, which have [only] begun in the past year or two," according to an official at the agriculture ministry's research promotion division. Drones may be the future of rice farming in Japan, as the next generation of farmers trade the field for the city. “The Japanese Rice Project is about finding the Japanese traditional mind again, not just technology, selling, and agriculture. Hidaka K (1993) Farming systems for rice cultivation which promote the regulation of pest populations by natural enemies: planthopper management in traditional, intensive farming and LISA rice cultivation in Japan, Extension Bulletin, 374. The website World Rice Production shows that Japan produced 7.6 million metric tons in June 2017, far behind many of its Asian counterparts and not far from the 6,382,000 metric tons harvested in the United States. While they are great for aerial photography and fun to fly around haphazardly, their practical uses go far beyond. {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}}. As fewer young people take over from their elders, new technologies such as drones are becoming a central part of agriculture. They face a further challenge: The food service industry is buying more cheap imported rice and turning away from pricier domestic products. “The Japanese Rice Project is about finding the Japanese traditional mind again, not just technology, selling, and agriculture. The protection of the domestic rice industry encouraged high-cost domestic production. "Our aim is to maintain an operation that can earn sufficient profit even after prices drop.". Ine 稲 when grown in rice fields; o-kome お米 for the harvested rice - the kanji 米 enters into the composition of the old character 氣: ki, vital energy; and finally gohan ご飯 (or meshi) for the cooked rice that we consume. Japan to boost rice production 35. Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself. “They have been heavily utilized in spraying rice paddies,” said Brad Anderson, manager of Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA’s Unmanned Systems Division. Japan However, drone development has not moved as quickly in the agriculture industry as it has in others. “From now on, drone agriculture technology will be a major area, because the world will be suffering from food crises and land for cultivation is declining rapidly because of environmental issues.”, James mentions two ways that the Agri Drone helps reduce labor for farmers. (See Photo 1: Seed exchange seminar by the Japan Organic Agriculture Association.) Anderson believes that the piloting of drones is a skill set the younger generation finds attractive. To ensure this, rice paddy irrigation is practiced. I would like to add that 5G Network would help drone industry in empowering it to enable super-fast and safe drone deployments in RICE industry. While many people do not have any interest in hand spraying a field, they may have interest in piloting an unmanned helicopter to do the spraying.”. For example, our Agri Drone can take multi-spectrum images, such as near-infrared and thermal. Good article. This will help farm businesses by helping to shore up Japan's dwindling rice consumption and by making exports more competitive. SMEs and startups succeed in Japan's most dynamic city. OPTiM have an agreement with Saga University to encourage more students to major in agriculture and to stay in the area for farming after they graduate. “The Japanese are shifting food culture from rice-based to wheat,” he explained. There are various growing concerns over agricultural sustainability, including forecasted water shortages by 2030. 3434 Rice Production in JapanRice Production in Japan Most rice farming is done by “Most rice farming is done by “Sunday farmersSunday farmers”” Annual rice consumption per capitaAnnual rice consumption per capita 67.3 kg in 199667.3 kg in 1996 61.4 kg in 2005.61.4 kg in 2005. It is really good to here that we are using the new technology to help out these farmer. This camera can show what parts of the crops are growing well and which aren’t, using a simple map. ©2020 GPlusMedia Inc. Over the past three years, drone sales have reached new heights. If in Indonesia rice cultivation still uses human power but not with this Japanese state. Rice is so important in Japan that the word gohan also means meal. “The education extends to operators of the equipment and teaching them how to properly and safely perform a spray application; to the customer so they are aware of the details of the operations; and to regulators so they are aware of the operation and know how to properly regulate it.”. The new technologies, including drones that can spray crops with fertilizer and pesticides, and rice transplanting machines equipped with GPS, also have the potential to lower supermarket prices. According to the National Coordinator of NCAM, Dr. Segun Ademiluyi said SAWAH technology is a new innovation from Japan that affords farmers the opportunity of growing quality rice … Different Health Benefits Of Rice Rice … For Anderson, Yamaha’s R-MAX provides an alternative to hand spraying, and the use of an unmanned helicopter is something he believes is financially viable to reduce labor pressure. The technology can be used to survey crops and take photos of plants, allowing farmers to find insects, pest damage, weeds, diseased plants, and mold. It estimates that smart farming could cut the man-hours required for rice cultivation in half while boosting yields by 10% to 20%. It’s an education for future farmers.”. Ostrich farming fully potential to revolutionize red meat market; ... Modern Rice Cultivation Technology from Japan. The government tried for nearly half a century to shore up prices by nudging farmers to take land out of production. Rice-growing areas have trimmed the amount of land under cultivation as consumption has fallen. Chances are, you know someone who has bought one or received one as a gift. The company recently announced the introduction of the Smart Agriculture Alliance to encourage anyone interested in working with OPTiM on agricultural solutions to reach out to them. It is thought that this started the archipelago's agricultural revolution with its first intensive crop production. Experienced farmers are able to use water and fertilizers more efficiently, thanks to their extensive experiences, knowledge and know-how. One reason Katsumata is intent on taking Japanese organic rice abroad is a change in the nation’s culinary preferences. Destinations Food & Drink News Stay Video Search Today, a popular form of UAV is the drone, a small autonomous craft that is being applied to such diverse industries as real estate, construction, and agriculture. Minato-ku As the cost of rice cultivation continued to increase due to the rising cost of labour and land, Japan and the Republic of Korea continually increased rice prices and farm subsidies in order to maintain the balance between rural and urban household incomes. He pointed out, however, that sushi is a popular food in China, the United States, and Europe; so Japanese rice has potential markets abroad. Hate that mess. Rice prices, meanwhile, have been on a long-term slide, squeezing farm income. In Japan, rice-related industries such as agricultural producers and distributors, as well as consumers are cooperating to achieve SDGs. Falling rice prices are forcing Japanese farmers to cut production costs to safeguard their profits. I watched a very good NHK documnetary on this very subject. [1] Japanese farms have also received support from the country's consumers, who are more likely to purchase domestically produced goods regardless of price, compared with goods produced in other countries. Kiichiro Katsumata, president and chief operating officer of Drone Japan Co., Ltd., spoke to The ACCJ Journal about the company’s Drone Rice Project. The “pinpoint insect extermination” feature allows farmers to attach a pesticide bottle to the drone and spray only areas where insects are detected, reducing labor and the amount of chemicals used. November 2, 2017, 10:44 am November 2, 2017 4051. “We also work with students and faculty in develop­ment and testing,” James explained. But the gentan policy was scrapped after the 2017 season as consumers continued to shun the traditional staple and the program fell short of its goals. Nikkei Asian Review, now known as Nikkei Asia, will be the voice of the Asian Century. Green innovation — In a technology-savvy country like Japan, urban agriculture offers a fertile ground for green innovation. Lowering retail prices is crucial if Japan is to halt the decline in rice consumption and spur export demand. Tanaka Nojo, a rice farming corporation in Japan's western Tottori Prefecture, plans to introduce smart farming this growing season. Collectively, these areas cover nearly 80 percent of the country. It has purchased chemical-spraying drones and a GPS-ready rice transplanter, which injects seedlings into paddy fields. Japan has a modern rice planting machine that has the name Rice Transplanter with this device that can facilitate farmers in placing rice, in addition to being easier, the tool used can deliver precise results. Tokyo 106-0044 The advantage of this machine is that it can be used as planting rice seeds simultaneously. In this SIP project, two types of end users are considered: core farmers Practising Natural Farming in Japan. "As brand awareness has grown in production areas, allowing [rice] to be sold for higher prices, moves to lower costs have lost steam," said Yasufumi Miwa, a scholar at the Japan Research Institute. How drone technologies will change the face of the agriculture industry Watch Now I hope that this improvement can be apply to Thai farmer as well because Thai farmer are mostly aging and it is very hot and humid here. Domestic prices are still far higher than those on the world market. Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most dynamic market in the world. The cost of drones is, of course, an issue, so Katsumata is looking to connect with new investors. Labor solutions have never been more necessary, and drone technology is proving to be one solution for farming. As we all know that, drones require high-speed internet connectivity for performing multiple operations like commands and controls, with media sharing and flying at the same time. Smart agriculture has the potential to succeed where previous government policy has failed, halting and perhaps reversing the downward spiral in rice consumption and production in Japan. “People’s image of drones is that they are utilized for chemical spraying,” he said. Rice has been at the center of Japan’s economy and culture for centuries. So if this advancement came in it would really help them a lot. Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. A mix of what's trending on our other sites, https://journal.accj.or.jp/new-age-farms/, SoftBank sells controlling stake in Boston Dynamics to Hyundai, Green hydrogen: A fuel bursting with climate-saving potential. Japan has 41 tractors/100 ha VS North America with 3/100 ha. ASPAC Food and Fertilizer Technology Center, Taipei, pp 1–15 Google Scholar Related Articles. In fact, the average [yield] is 50 percent of what is harvested from chemically-treated rice.”, “In order to harvest more, organic farmers are also using organic fertilizers, and the drones can show which parts need to be fertilized.”. This technology led to the R-MAX, an unmanned helicopter introduced in 1997. Maybe drones can stop all the chemical crop dusting in America. Katsumata believes this is beginning to change. Recommended for you. The hope is that this will improve crop yield and even increase the selling price and value of the crops. The Association provided an incubating environment, in which dedicated farmers worked together and exchanged their experiences to create, refine and disseminate organic farming technology. “We have already made some partnerships through this campaign, including with a local bank, winery, herb farm, and farm management company,” James said. The Japanese technology that needs to be emulated is the existence of an automatic rice planting machine. Second, the footage helps to map out problems. In Japan ‘natural farming’ is the new buzzword and more and more people are moving ahead to practice this kind of farming. First, it takes photos of crops and the analysis can be done by one person. "We will be able to cut production costs by up to 10%.". The average age of farmers in Japan is 67. In order to address this issue, a digital farming technology has been developed in Japan. The price of the sophisticated equipment, which is between 10% and 50% higher than that of conventional farm implements, is a hurdle. “So, even though we have lots of rice farmers in Japan, that population is rapidly declining because Japanese people do not eat [so much] rice today, and young people especially are shifting their food culture to more Western foods.”. Further than its use on vineyards in California’s Napa Valley, he foresees the technology being applied to other high-value speciality crops. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) were used for military purposes in the mid-1800s (balloon bombers) and World War I (pilotless aircraft). Agricultural production in Japan leans more heavily toward rice and vegetables than that of many of its peers (Exhibit 3) In 2013, rice and vegetables accounted for almost half of Japanese ... large farming enterprises in Japan also account for a disproportionately Tel: +81 3 5561 7755 In 2018, Japan produced 9.7 million tons of rice (13th largest producer in the world), 3.6 million tons of sugar beet (used to produce sugar and ethanol), 1.2 million tons of sugarcane (used to produce sugar and ethanol), 208 thousand tons of persimmon (4th largest producer in the world), 2.7 million tons of assorted vegetables, 3 million tons of potatoes, 1.3 million tons of cabbage, 1.6 million tons of onion, 773 thousand tons of tangerine… Drones and GPS-ready planters have the potential to make up for scarce workers. So far, the company has contracts with seven farmers to cultivate organic rice with the help of drones. “We also think that drones will be able to scan for more varied information. farming system for rice production, automation technology needs to be developed. “Here in the United States, our initial target has been vineyards—specifically vineyards on difficult terrain, such as steep hillsides.”. “Sustainability with technology is inevitable and mandatory for the future—especially for the next generation of farmers.” This is why he has partnered with schools nationwide­—from junior high to university level—to help teach students how drones and artificial intelligence can be used for agriculture in the Big Data era. By far the most important staple food was rice. Due to increasing technology farming has increased in efficiency to where large rice fields can be harvested in about three days. Before the arrival of rice-paddy farming, people in Japan depended on naturally-available sources of sustenance. The "aigamo method" of growing rice was developed in 1989 by Takao Furuno, a farmer in Fukuoka Prefecture, and it allows for the production of healthy and delicious rice while relying on less labor than previous methods. Tanaka Nojo, a rice farming corporation in Japan's western Tottori Prefecture, plans to introduce smart farming this growing season. The Agri Drone goes one step further. In Japan, paddy fields are the main form of rice cultivation. Japan's rice growers need to make their product more price-competitive. Japan’s population is aging. India has started to develop a similar engine, but not a few farmers have used this technology. Japanese experts make a breakthrough in farming technology, using polymer film to grow food. is about 1100 ha, in Japan it is about 2 ha. to learn how you can update your cookie settings. OPTiM is working with local governments to help educate about the benefits of drone usage, and is working with Fujieda City in Shizuoka and Obihiro City in Hokkaido Prefecture to find farmers to train. Including fruit orchards and vegetable fields, the farm has 120 hectares of planted area, 100 times the national average of 1.2 hectares. There is evidence of rice c. 1250 BCE, introduced to Japan via migrants from mainland Asia in the late Jomon Period, but its cultivation was likely not until c. 800 BCE. Domestic crop production, with a traditional focus on rice, accounts for the highest output within the agricultural farming sector. Particularly for Japanese rice, this technology can help make the sector more competitive. Presently, with advanced farming technology, it is also possible to grow black rice in other regions throughout the India. But as more farmers introduce high-tech machinery, the techniques may take hold.
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