Introduction In Japan, the effects of the globalisation of agriculture are particularly acute. For decades, the government has attempted to maintain the viability of domestic agriculture through protectionist policies and subsidies. Yet despite these policies, food consumption in Japan is increasingly global and domestic agriculture is increasingly less viable. High production costs, combined with a decreasing and rapidly ageing population, create a situation where most farm households are successor-less, and the future of domestic agriculture is in question. Against this backdrop, the nation's self-sufficiency rate has sunk below 40%, as a wide range of staple agricultural products are increasingly imported from around the world (see Figures 12.1 and 12.2). At the same time, the globalisation of food consumption and declining viability of domestic agriculture has produced its own crises and counter-movements. Most notable in recent years is the increasing sense of fear and vulnerability produced by the decreasing self-sufficiency rate and food scandals over tainted imports. For example, in January 2008 over 400 people were poisoned after consuming frozen dumplings from China tainted with pesticides. The incident produced a backlash against frozen imports and plummeting sales 2008). In general, the government's response to food scandals and declining domestic production has been to promote the intensification of industrial agriculture, particularly rice production, to raise the nation's caloric self-sufficiency rate. However, the central government's push to raise self-sufficiency is not the only counter-movement shaping agriculture in Japan.
|Title of host publication||Globalisation and Agricultural Landscapes: Change Patterns and Policy Trends in Developed Countries|
|Publisher||Cambridge University Press|
|Number of pages||20|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2010|