Japan places emphasis on healthy food for healthy living

Nagano: Japan is progressive when it comes to leading a healthy life.

In Yatsugatake Highland of Nagano prefecture, ORIX Corporation recently inaugurated a new agriculture production venture “ORIX Yatsugatake Farm Corporation” with experienced local farm Honda Engei Corporation.

Seven types of leaf vegetables such as spinach and arugula for fresh consumption will be produced using Hydroponics.

“As you see, this farm introduces solution culture hydroponics. Vegetables are growing by the liquid fertilizer. It is completely pesticide-free and produces safe and secure vegetables,” said Shunsuke Iijima of ORIX Yatsugatake Farm Corporation.

The facility is located at an altitude of 1,100m at the foot of Yatsugatake with abondant insolation.

In combination with the hydroponics, this project will make it possible to produce vegetables all year-round.

By using hydroponics to shorten the growing period, this project will make it possible to sell products with “four fixed factors” – fixed prices, fixed quality, fixed timing and fixed quantities.

This project enables to generate 19 harvests in a year as compared to conventional farming, which only gives three to four harvests a year,

Utilizing the ORIX Group’s sales network and channels, the vegetables will be sold on a stable basis to retail and food services in the greater Tokyo and central Japan areas.

“The food self-sufficiency ratio in Japan shows very low rate down to 39 percent on calorie basis. Also the less job opportunities accelerate aging of the farming populations. The agricultural sector is facing the subject of much expectation in Japan,” said Iijima.

“We believe that ORIX will develop a new competitive agricultural business through the creation of new sales networks, and contribute to the growth of regional economies by resolving agricultural issues, while striving for harmonious coexistence with local communities,” Iijima added.

Japan is also known for healthy food. At a recently held expo, Yoshimori firm introduced healthy Washoku, a curd produced from beans.

“At the kitchen of restaurant or hotel, bean curd is produced in only 15 minutes mixing soya milk and “Nigari” by this machine,” said Midori Fukuda, Sales manager, Yoshimori Co. Ltd.

“In a restaurant, customer can enjoy Japanese traditional bean curd by this machine,” Fukuda added.

Diet food is the main part of any Japanese traditional cuisine.

Takeshi Hyodo, the president of Hokumoh Kuroho Co. Ltd., said Konnyaku is made of an ingredient having 100 percent dietary fiber.

“It is produced from glucomannan. It is low calorie and gluten free. This fried noodle is Konnyaku noodle. It is low calorie and diet fiber. That is big selling point. Foreigner named Konnyaku “devil’s tongue”. It means Konnyaku is not his forte. We developed familiar Konnyaku for foreigner changing shape,” added Hyodo.

Tea and juice from mulberry leaf is a popular Japanese drink.

“To cultivate good mulberry tree, we tackle producing good soil. Kumamoto area in Kyushu has good circumstance of such soil, climate and fresh air. We never rely on fertilizer and agricultural chemicals. Juice from mulberry leaf includes eight times anthocyanin more than blueberry. It is an ultimate healthy drink,” said Ryukichi Mine, Tree Doctor, Minejumokuen Co. Ltd.

“It has appropriate sweet taste. Not too much sweet and fragrance of mulberry remains in the mouth,” added Mine when asked about mulberry jam. (ANI)