In order to gain a foothold in resolving the issue of absentee landowners, steps must be taken to gain insight into the attitude of these landowners toward their farmland, and to analyze farmers’views toward absentee landowners and their intentions to carry out farming operations into the future. This paper summarizes the actual attitudes held by both groups toward agriculture and farmland, and the differences in their attitudes, by focusing on the farmers’view of absentee landowners, an approach that has rarely been taken when addressing the issue of absentee landowners. Additional analysis is carried out through interview-based surveys of absentee landowners to gain insight into how these landowners might retain their ties with the community and in what roles they might be able to provide cooperative input. While ongoing efforts to approach absentee landowners directly are necessary to resolve the issue of absentee landowners, efforts must also be taken to prepare an agreement which is to be entered into by the heirs of farmers and other parties with community residents when they relocate to other locations, and to utilize these agreements in decision-making processes regarding community preservation and agricultural guidelines into the future.
China is one of the main consumers of forest products, its trade with developed countries having expanded after it joined the WTO and abolished tariffs. The structure of China’s trade imports and exports for forest products has also changed greatly with rapid economic growth. This study focused on China’s forest products trade with Japan and the aspects such as what sort of mechanism and pattern of trade progresses in making an analysis related to international trade. Analyzing these trade patterns using the international input-output table between China and Japan, this study results show that for forest products the interindustry and intra-industry trade are making progress. I use a gravity model and a general regression model to analyze and identify the factors that contribute to trade expansion and influence the structure of the forest products.
We study regional student support communities in terms of challenges faced by students and propose how regional support may be made more effective. First, depending on the background of such communities and the circumstances they operate under, we classify student communities into four types: seminars, educational programs, circles, and clubs. We find that each classification type has its own unique problems. Second, we discuss 1) the establishment of a daily counseling center to help dispel any fears the students might harbor, 2) provision of recruitment support and mentoring for students, to help them plan for the future, 3) fostering student inclusiveness and partnerships with communities so as to create safe and caring environments, and 4) the provision of region-wide resources, including funding, counseling, and networking among various student associations, so as to improve student experiences and learning outcomes. A future challenge would be to escalate the development of student communities from organized support to strategic management.
This paper examines the demographics and attitudes of visitors to Hirosaki Apple Park, Japan’s leading apple producer located in the western part of Aomori prefecture. The objective is to gain a clear picture of the park’s role after the Great East Japan Earthquake, which influences the tourism industry in eastern Japan to this day. The analysis of the data, which was collected by conducting face-to-face surveys at the park, reveals that sixty percent of the visitors repeatedly visit it, most of them being from Hirosaki city. These visitors usually stay for several hours, and among the various facilities the park provides, they are likely to try their hand at apple farming in the large expanse of open fields. On the other hand, visitors from urban areas and those who suffered losses due to the earthquake, chiefly enjoy recreational farming activities, such as harvesting. Moreover, on average, repeat visitors are more likely to be urbanites and females. Altogether, the Apple Park is utilized not only as a recreational facility by the local residents, but also as a place of healing for urbanites and people who suffered losses due to the earthquake. It also serves as a place to promote cultural exchanges between urbanites and their rural counterparts.
This study identifies some of the key requirements for a rural experimental learning program that involves a university and a rural community. An action research method was applied to a case study involving a learning program run by Kobe University and Sasayama city. Empirical data, consisting of meeting minutes, field reports, forum presentations, and feedback notes from students involved in the program, were collected from 2007 to 2011. The results highlight the optimal number of students per farmer in group activities, suitable host associations, the need for events that facilitate cross-regional participation, the need for a rotation of community hosts, and the need for an appointed program coordinator. Furthermore, to ensure the long-term continuation of such a program, it is essential that there is a dialogue between the university and rural community, which is facilitated by the program coordinator.
This study identified and inventoried the diverse roles of support farmers who support those who are newcomers to farming; it does so by classifying the various functions of mentoring. Among the processes involved in helping new farmers become established is the fact that the relationship between support farmers and new farmers is ongoing. In the early period,just after one starts to farm, support that relates to sponsorship and coaching is important. Later, as these farmers become more established, support that relates to role models, exposure, and challenging work is important. These results indicate that the role of support farmers changes during the process by which new farmers become more established.
While the production of and demand for cut flowers has decreased in recent years, marketing channels for cut flowers have diversified. This paper aims to clarify the present marketing environment for this sector by analyzing consumer/buyer behavior. The results that (1) the main consumer is middle-aged or elderly (age 50 years or more), (2) buying preferences and habits differ with the consumer’s age, (3) channels with recently expanded shares include supermarkets and farmers markets, (4) the quality and appearance of the flowers are important to the consumer, and (5) regular buyers use various sources of information before making the decision to purchase.
Although discarded fruit has proved to be an effective raw material in the production of bio-ethanol, the problem of seasonal variance in quantities of discards remains an influential factor. This study compares the economic efficiencies of two production approaches: production within facilities sufficiently equipped to produce amounts as required, and production that relies on an inventory of raw material to produce a leveled average. The two cases used in this comparison are the NaraWakayama area, where fruit is discarded throughout the year, and the Yamagata-Fukushima area, where the r etrieval of discarded fruit is periodic throughout the year. Results of the analysis of the cost factors of leveling and the initial and running costs of conversion lead to the conclusion that the former approach offers superior (i.e., lower) total production costs.
This study examines the act of creating in Japan soybean products with high added value, based on the results of a questionnaire survey of consumers at Fusetsuka, a soybean product shop in Iwate prefecture. In general, soybean products are delivered on a daily basis and sold at low prices. A great number of soybean shops in Japan offer imported soybeans at prices lower than local soybeans, in or der to maximize their profits. On the other hand, Fusetsuka sells high-added-value products that make use of local soybeans; these products are likely to be offered at prices higher than those delivered daily. In addition, products that use local soybeans can potentially boost their satisfaction of those who buy them. Eventually, it can be said that local soybeans could substantially increase overall demand for high-quality products.
In this case study, a farmer in Otsu city produces rice for use as feed. He uses iron-coated rice seeds sown directly into a paddy field, and the study compares the results of this method to that of transplantation, in terms of costs, work plan, and profitability. Direct seeding with iron-coated seeds reduced the number of working hours and evened out the amount of work during busier times. In addition, it was found that if chicken droppings were used as fertilizer, the overall costs would decrease: both chicken droppings and one-shot fertilizer made a big difference, in terms of harvest yield. Seeding with an unmanned helicopter was also found to minimize working hours effectively. In this case study, the use of chicken droppings was found to promote efficient and profitable farm management.
This paper aims to clarify the effects of changes in Direct Payments for Hilly and Mountainous Areas (DPHMA) on farmer organizations in target areas. DPHMA began in 2000 and has changed every 5 years. This study recognizes 3 dimensions of change in DPHMA. The first dimension is “enlargement,” the second, “thinking strategically,” and the third, “strengthening cooperation.” Farmer organizations have adapted to these changes. Enlargement of each farmer organization’s farming area was observed by analyzing the data statistically; small farmer organizations preferred to unite and thus become bigger. In the case of the F district in Shimane prefecture, two villages established one farmer organization as an extension of a farmer cooperation program in 2010. Their future master plan includes securing, developing, and make good use of human resources. It is notable that some farming lands that were about to be abandoned found a new lease of life.
This paper focuses on the factors affecting countermeasures against monkey crop raiding that have been implemented voluntarily by residents. Two factors affect these countermeasures: the interaction between village residents and experts, and the funding of participatory methods through which villagers could implement these countermeasures. Some village residents had devised innovative counter measures drawing upon experiences of crop raids by animals in the past. However, currently, there is no system to facilitate the dissemination of successful countermeasures against crop raiding by animals. We argue that establishing such a system would help the development and spread of effective countermeasures. Accordingly, we offer a number of policy recommendations. Firstly, an effective network enabling knowledge sharing about countermeasure techniques should be established. Secondly, a person should be employed locally to facilitate and enhance village-based crop raiding countermeasure plans and activities.
Today, more than 90% of Japan’s citizens are Internet users; even rural residents can now access it with the same ease as city dwellers. As a result of rising number of users, more rural residents are becoming incr easingly affected by the Internet. On one hand, the Internet presents them with an enhanced opportunities for daily communication; on the other hand, concurrently, there are disadvantages: we assume, for example, that Internet users in rural areas lose interest in their own regional communities as they spend more time on the Internet. In this study, we focus on the “sense of region” among Internet users who live in hilly and mountainous areas. As a result of our analysis, we found that Internet users—especially users of social networking sites, including Twitter—tend to have a lower interest in their own regions, as compared to those who do not use the Internet for such purposes. Following this result, it is important to determine the ways of Internet usage that will deliver positive effects to these regions, before the negative influence can proliferate.
There have been a problem which a rate of land use and unit yield of arviculture is low level to incr ease food selfsufficiency ratio. The purpose of this paper is to clarify the formation factors and conditions affecting long-interval arviculture crop rotation systems. The analysis was conducted using the case study method. The formation factors are as follows: 1) Income from the soybean crop exceeded that from paddy rice due to the fall in the price of paddy and the policy of rice supply adjustment. 2) Improvements in the physical properties of the soil led to an increase in the per unit yield of barley. The formation conditions are as follows: 1) This cropping system necessitates that the work be completed within a specific (short) time. 2) The system r equires many operators/a larger labor force (i.e., group farming) in order to be implemented.
The resource management of bluefin tuna has been strengthened worldwide; in Japan, bluefin tuna aquaculture production has increased as a result of this change. In particular, several large companies have entered the domestic bluefin tuna farming industry, and the impact of this shift on the market has been considerable. In this study, we examine the criteria by which these companies determine the locations of their respective production areas; we also analyze how they evaluate various production areas. The data used in our analysis are derived from hearing investigations for persons working in the bluefin tuna farming sectors.
In this study, various styles of Nongjiale management are analyzed during periods of changing conditions vis-à-vis the urbanization of residents’lifestyles and communities, based on the results of a Guandi village door-to-door Nongjiale survey. Furthermore, the role of cooperatives in increasingly diverse Nongjialeand local communities is examined. The survey results clearly demonstrate that changes in local communities ar e due to urbanization. Nongjiale management is increasingly more varied, and is often performed as a side business by full-time farmers (i.e., part-time Nongjiale), but also by full-time Nongjiale (where it is the main source of income) or by rental Nongjiale (where facilities are rented specifically for management). Farmers’cooperatives work to develop an environment where all residents can participate in tourist activities and cultivate human resources to undertake regional development initiatives, revise requirements to promote diverse kinds of involvement, preserve the local landscape, and the like. Finally, in view of the diverse societal changes that villagers’committees face, it is evident that cooperatives accept a wide variety of residents and work to organize local areas through Nongjiale.
The purpose of this study was threefold: to gain insight into how absentee heirs engage in agricultural work at their parents’homes and with other residents in the community by conducting a questionnaire survey with heirs that have relocated to intermediate and mountainous areas, to analyze factors that contribute to an absentee heir’s intent to engage in agriculture work in the future, and to summarize the challenges heirs encounter when carrying out agricultural activities and the means by which a cooperative system can be implemented. The study found no significant correlation between the number of times absentee heirs returned to their community of birth and the substantive support in agricultural work they provided at their parents’homes. However, it did point out that their intent to engage in agricultural work was affected by whether they had siblings and other relatives, and the distance between their current place of residence and their community of birth. Interestingly, heirs that relocated from communities with a high degree of farmland deterioration and only a small number of households were relatively more eager to engage in farming. The challenge in using farmland together with absentee heirs is that current households in these communities and absentee heirs have no means of cooperatively addressing community-wide agricultural challenges because of the severity of farmland deterioration and the number of small-scale family farms. Moving forward, the government (Yamaguchi City) will be required to mediate between residents and absentee heirs by working with the Sodateru-kai (Society for Growth), that is alr eady active in the community, and by continuing to conduct surveys concerning its farmland.
Farmers are both decreasing in number and aging overall, and so it is essential that a new “crop” of farmers be generated. The number of high-quality fruit production areas remains the same as it ever was. However, substantial experience of several years is necessary before one can master fruit cultivation methods; therefore, it is difficult to derive a stable income level during that experience- gathering period. Therefore, this study examines important production methods by which that income can be earned. We selected Okayama as the study area and muscat as a high-quality fruit, and we found that the introduction of muscat production in processing leads to the earning of a more stable income; in addition, these conditions lead to fewer work hours among the farmers thus employed, and they help mitigate the risk of failure.
The production of vegetables for businesses and, ultimately, for processing tends to be undertaken within large-scale production districts. However, in recent years, more small-scale production districts have been seen. The reason for this change is that food suppliers have started to buy special vegetables in order to diversify their product offerings. This study analyzes an example in which vegetables are produced for business and processing through collaboration between foodrelated business operators and small-scale production districts; this study also clarifies the circumstances under which these collaborations are formed, and how they are viewed.
This study specifically examines processors in the marketing of production centers of local agricultural specialties and identifies their conditions, issues, and future directions. Approximately 80% of Japan’s domestic production of water shields, as examined in the analysis, is concentrated in Mitane-cho, Akita prefecture. No competing production centers or processors use conventional sales channels, and this discourages new product development. Even under such circumstances, new developments have taken place, such as the procurement of raw materials through the use of refrigeration and processing technologies, and product and channel development through the strategic positioning of material production at the farm level (i.e., ponds). In the future, however, the entire water shield market needs to be expanded by increasing raw material production, by leveraging cooperation among processors and offering the year-round sale of products created through the shared use of refrigeration and processing facilities in the region.
This study clarifies the factors that need to be changed, in order to convert new customers to a farmers’ market into repeat customers. For this study, we selected a farmers’market that was r ecently built and located as a tourist attraction. The results of this study indicate that its characteristic of a tourist location gives visiting customers the opportunity to acquire shop knowledge. Besides, this characteristic tends to attract particular customers in preference to the usual farmers’ markets. With regard to the goods sold there, customers evaluated them as being high-quality, fresh, safe, and at a low price; such evaluations are conducive to subsequent visits and future purchases. Each customer’s evaluation of goods is differ ent, but overall ratings indicate that the goods are generally the same among the usual farmers’ markets. Therefore, we presume that among farmers’ markets that have the same customers and same trade area, there will be competition. We propose that farmers’ markets target particular customers, and display distinct goods in cases where there are differences of location.
The Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, located in wester n China, faces the problems of rural surplus made effor ts to resolve these problems by promoting the growth of secondary and tertiary industries in the region. The purpose of this is to confirm whether this promotion by the government has helped rectify problems relating to excess labor and agricultural productivity in Xinjiang; it does so by estimating changes in the share of labor in agriculture in 1980–2010. The estimation results show that agriculture’s share of the overall labor force increased from 11.9% in 1980–1999 to 19.2% in 2000–2010 and it was found that the government’s promotion helped increase farmers’ incomes after 2000.
This study examines the potential of food waste reduction through green purchasing in relation to Japanese consumers’tofu purchasing decisions. Choice modeling (Random Parameter Logit[RPL] model) is used to quantify welfare changes associated with changes in local origin and food recycling labeling, and the freshness and price of tofu as relevant to Japanese consumers in August 2012. Consumers have a positive perception of local origin and food recycling labeling, along with the freshness and price of tofu. The choice probability of food recycling labeled tofu is estimated at approximately 70%. The results suggest that green purchasing holds potential for food waste reduction in the tofu manufacturing sector.
After the Great East Japan Earthquake, Japan has shown increased interest in renewable energy. While offshore wind power generation has attracted much attention in Japan because of the extensive ocean area available for the purpose, a tradeoff between policy support for offshore wind power and ocean fisheries is inevitable. We compare the economic ripple effects of investments in offshore wind power generation and marine fisheries using input-output analysis. Our results show that investment in marine fisheries has a higher economic ripple effect than that in offshore wind power generation and that the annual economic value generated by the former is also higher. While offshore wind power is important as a source of alternative/clean energy for Japan, it would be prudent to realize its lower economic value compared to ocean fisheries.
This study investigates the impacts of migration on children’s health and nutrition in rural Cambodia, where emigration has been rapidly increasing. If we estimate the impacts through the simultaneous use of data vis-à-vis migration variables and the “remittance from migrants” variable, we could encounter endogeneity, selection bias, and/or multicollinearity problems. To cope with these issues, we estimate the impacts of migration and remittance by applying panel data modeling analysis techniques to unique data from rural Cambodia. The estimation results show that the impacts of migration on children’s health are negative and robust; the impacts of remittances on child nutrition, however, are positive and not robust.
In Japan, the proliferation of organic farming has made little progress; in the meantime, the distribution channels of organic farm products have diversified. The purpose of this study is to investigate the circumstances surrounding the sale of organic farm products in regions where organic farming has greatly proliferated, and to clarify the merits to farmers of diversified distribution channels. It was found that the availability of diversified distribution channels is effective in promoting organic farming within a r egion, for the following reasons: (1) Such channels make organic farming easier to manage for different types of farmers who work with various kinds of farming conditions, as they can choose the distribution channels most suitable to them, and (2) Such channels allow farmers to sell their products preferentially to contracted consumers and then the surplus to another channel, thus stabilizing their sales income. Thus, the provision of diversified distribution channels should make organic farming more attractive to a greater number of farmer.
This study seeks to clarify the diffusion structures of farmer inns that host experience-based education tours in the Aito area of Higasiomi city, Shiga. They involve invitations put forth by the farmer inns themselves, and a diffusion process that mainly involves local inhabitants. In outlining this solicitation route, we determined the following by undertaking interviewbased surveys: (1) There is a history of exchange projects just former Aito Town, (2) The diffusion process involved invitations by a few key persons, that is, dyadic ties, and (3) The diffusion structure had characteristics that changed according to the year in which the farmer inn hosted the tour.
This study was conducted to identify the compositional characteristics primarily of private-label fruit products sold by online supermarkets run by three large companies. The study revealed the following two points: (1) As one product characteristic, fruits are affected considerably by seasonality, which brings about changes in product quantity, depending on the time of year, and (2) Differences in the percentages of private-label products among the three companies are decreasing, but the characteristics of the private-label products still vary among these companies. Among them, Company I is characterized by its regular offer of highly seasonal private-label fruits within its product mix; this differentiates it from nonprivate label products, which vary in terms of pricing and packaging.
The purpose of this study is to expand the outlook of new business areas in regional cooperation or ganization that consist of multiple community farming organizations. Our main analytical method made use of questionnaires and interviews with key persons of an organization in Shimane prefecture. Three main findings were derived. First, this organization was able to share its human resources and assets; this made it possible to develop new areas of business, such as business community contributions. Second, this organization is expected to employ young people. Third, this organization can solve problems that cannot normally be solved by a single organization. This organization can be considered a model that creates a multi-industry economy in rural society.
This paper aims to understand the efficiency of social business and making use of the profits thus generated, for revitalizing and reorganizing rural communities and solving social problems. I have analyzed case studies in Shimanto Town in Kochi Prefecture, where social businesses make use of natural resources for selling goods and services in rural areas; these goods and services retain the intrinsic value of natural r esources and the flavor of local culture. One such case study looks at “Shimanto Drama,” a company that manages the Towa Road station, for displaying and selling some of the goods made from local produce. The other case study covers “Okamisanichi”, an organization run by farmwomen for selling vegetables and items of local cuisine at farmers’ markets and organizing agri-tourism. I have analyzed the characteristics of these case studies and discussed the possibility of developing social business as a tool for reorganizing and revitalizing the rural community for solving problems in rural areas.
From the viewpoint of business administration, this study aims to elucidate the development of family farm businesses that contribute favorably to US society. To achieve its objectives, this study focuses on the Energyshed (ES) project undertaken by family farms in the Capay Valley district of California. The ES project is a collective initiative between farmers and either residents or consumers to introduce renewable energy sources that provide farm businesses with electricity. The main methodology of this study was to interview farmers participating in the project; additionally, project documents were analyzed. As a result, we summarize three characteristics of the ES project. First, it consists of collaboration between family farms and either regional residents or consumers, as mediated through farm businesses. Second, it is sustained in the absence of government subsidies. Third, it hinges on r esidents’ and consumers’ understanding of family farm businesses.
This study aims to examine agricultural policy and the system by which family farms are supported in Switzerland. Agricultural policy in Switzerland has been developed with the thinking that traditional family farms need to be maintained. Current policy is grounded in article 104 of the federal constitution, revised in 1996, and made firm by some acts and ordinances that relate to direct payment, based on the article. The idea for this agricultural policy came from a 1984 white paper on agriculture; this idea has been embraced to date and embodied in the introduction of various new programs, including those that relate to direct payments, proof of ecological performance, and payments for animal welfare that is in line with taxpayers’ interests.
The study focuses on agricultural colleges and universities in England, which are responsible for delivering the formal education to individuals for the farming industry; it reveals the current state and futur e prospects of those institutions, based on a number of case studies. In England, enrollment in agricultural courses in such institutions has increased since the 2000s. According to a series of interviews with five key cases, the majority of applicants are from farming families. Although a large proportion of alumni with farming backgrounds go into farming, it is difficult for those with no farming background to engage in farming, mainly on account of lack of capital. In England, agricultural colleges and universities are required to provide the farming industry with a sound supply of human resources from a variety of backgrounds; it is also imperative, however, for such institutions to provide people who lack a farming background with opportunities to enter into farming, in addition to education opportunities.