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Aurelia George Mulgan

Agriculture in Japan is a declining industry. Two essential factors of production – land and labour – are contracting at an alarming rate. Between 1961 and 2013 Japan lost 1.55 million hectares (ha) of land under cultivation, a 25 per cent fall.1 The agricultural working population dropped even more dramatically, slumping from a peak of 14.54 million in 1960 to just 2.27 million in 2014, an 84 per cent decline, while the number of farm households decreased almost 60 per cent from 6.18 million to 2.53 million, with only 1.41 million commercial farms2 (Nōrinsuisanshō, 2014). Japanese agriculture is also facing a severe demographic crisis. In 2013 the average age of the agricultural working population was 66.2 yrs, while in 2014, 64 per cent were 65 yrs or over (Nōrinsuisanshō, 2014). Many ...

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