politics

Japan's business leaders praise EU trade pact but farmers worried

23 Comments

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"But farmers in the country voiced concern about stiffer competition from European products such as cheese and meat."

Dont worry its a rigged hand all take and no give.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

If they are worried then ey need to get their ship in order. Several times in the last few years there has been a butter, cheese or milk shortage for some reason or another.

If the EU can prodice a decent prodict for a cheaper price, the Japanese will need to modernize and get competitive. Instead of waiting in the dark they might spend their time figuring out what the farms in EU are doing so they can be ready to adopt or adjust their production.

For those worried about Japan becoming too dependent on foreign sources of food, reminder that Japanese import roughly 61% of their food. It is admirable to try and reduce that, but frankly with only something like 3 million farmers in all of Japan, with an average age of 65...consider me skeptical.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Worried that we can FINALLY stop being ripped off by the Monopoly. Can. Not. WAIT to see JA squirm. They’re as bad as organised crime!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"If (more) European pork makes its way here, life will become even harder for us," said Michio Ushidome, head of a pig farmers' lobby in Kagoshima Prefecture.

Yeah, I'm not surprised the Japanese farmers are worried. It means they will have to compete with international markets and actually work for a living instead of getting government subsidies to do nothing. It's actually a good thing. The prices of Japanese produce will most likely increase, but as long as the quality does not drop the market will hold strong. Most Japanese produce is of a very high quality. This is what they need to hold onto and let the imported rabble be dispersed among the minions.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

This figure of 61% of food being imported has been shown to be a boogeyman. That is the figure for ALL foodstuffs in monetary value.

It includes alcohol like whiskey and luxury items like truffles.

Of course there is a huge amount of grain and soy bean, but Japan can actually feed itself.

It fits into the, Japan is a small country , narrative.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A whole decent juicy Euro chicken is a better buy than an old hen chopped into little parts simply because it's useless and no longer able to produce eggs .

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The horror! I've grown used to the "3rd World" quality of Japanese agricultural goods.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

"Domestic cheese just doesn't have the name recognition of European cheese."

Name recognition is not the issue, the problem is that domestic cheese is inferior.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I wish Japanese people eat more meat, cheese and drink more milk and become as brainy, strong and aggressive as westerners here.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Wrembreck,

Name recognition is not the issue, the problem is that domestic cheese is inferior.

Not all of it. There is some excellent artisanal cheese being made. Notably in Okinawa.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Remarkable that the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has seen fit not to fully communicate to Japans meat/dairy farmers, and wineries the political and legislative distinction between a free trade agreement and this so called accord which in essence is little more than a political declaration of possible intent.

Uncaring crass behavior that frankly lacks any understanding for the J agriculture industry and these proud hard working farmers who without being fully briefed will worry unnecessarily.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@Gary: Not sure if it can feed itself at current consumption without drastic overhaul of their farming system. For example. from what I understand something like half of all meat consumed is imported.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's not even ratified, not close. And the News is full of farmers panicking. 1980s all farm subsidies in NZ were axed. Disaster for farmers and allied industry. But 15, years latter a self sustainable, profitable industry emerged. Take the pain to get the gain, if your not making money it's not a business. Compete with the best and beat them...or not.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Don't worry -- any deal Abe makes will still keep the uncompetitive farmers here rich in subsidies while Abe demands other nations import Japanese goods.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Schopenhauer

You take the prize for the worst comment of the day.

Why should Japanese consume more animal products which are known to be bad for you? So they can become obese like the States and Europe?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Please let more European cheese into Japan and at lower prices..... Japanese cheese is the worst.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Why should Japanese consume more animal products which are known to be bad for you

Now that's not really fair. I see plenty of fat Japanese. And the obesity is from fast food and high fructose corn syrup, which I see many Japanese lapping it up at Macdonalds. Animal products means what? No fish? I see Japanese kids eat a lot of bread.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Bertie:  where near Okinawa, cheese is produced?   Is the place as snowy as Swiss Orr Hokkaido in Fall, Winter, and Spring?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@ Garym,

Interesting point, facts to back it up please.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I've said it before. I'll say it again. Cricy is right. The deal hasn't been ratified. When it does, and the conditions of the deal are made clear, we'll have more to say. But alot of things can happen between the conclusion of a deal and its ratification, as we saw with Trump and the TPP. In addition to that, we don't know what's going to happen with Abe in the next election, and if the farmers will lean on a different candidate to scrap this deal. We just have to wait and see.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

toshiko,

where near Okinawa, cheese is produced?

Not NEAR Okinawa, in Okinawa, in Nanjo: https://www.facebook.com/cheeseguyinokinawa/

I'm not kidding. This is REAL cheese.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Berte,  thank you.  My daughter said cheese can be made in hot place.  just building is colder.  She said  Vegas is hot but some business make cold milk product and ice cream.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

toshiko,

The Cheese Guy told me that different cheeses can be made in different places and that Okinawa is an excellent place to make Italian style cheeses. The climate is very similar to Sardinia and Southern Italy. Mould grows well in hot and humid places and since the basis of cheese is mould, Okinawa is a great place to make cheese.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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