Japan preserves its legacy of traditional rice farming

·2-min read
Japan preserves its legacy of traditional rice farming
Japan preserves its legacy of traditional rice farming

Chiba [Japan], September 5 (ANI): Rice remains a staple food in Japan for over 2,000 years. The country produces nearly 8 million tons of rice every year with a consumption of 55 kg per person.

Oyama Senmaida in Chiba Prefecture is a spectacular rice field terrace that could be easily accessed from Tokyo.

And one of the greatest benefits of being a rice-loving country is that Japan has also a beautiful rice field terrace called "Tanada" in several locations in the countryside from north to south.

Oyama Senmaida was recognized in 2002 as a "cultural landscape," created mutually by people and nature, when it was designated by Chiba Prefecture as a Prefectural Landmark.

"We make this rice fields terrace on the mountain and we call it "Senmaida" or "Tanada". And usually, farmers use river or lake water to irrigate the rice, but our terrace is special because we depend only on rain to grow our rice, so we collect the rainwater and use it," said one of the farmers.

The cultivation of the hillside of the mountainous regions was a common sight throughout Japan, until the late 1970s. However, due to the increase in the use of machinery and an aging population of farmers, this beautiful landscape was rapidly disappeared.

But, in Kamogawa City, the terraced rice paddy of Oyama Senmaida continues to be carefully maintained and cultivated to this day and It has become a famous tourist attraction.

"We brought about 30 visitors, and we came here because it is a famous tourist spot in Chiba prefecture and during the corona situation, it is a great place for an outdoor visit, also in this season we can see the newly planted rice," said Tourist Company Staff.

Currently, Oyama Senmaida field is maintained by the "owner system," which works to contribute toward local revitalization by helping to preserve beautiful landscapes and provide a place for urban residents to try farming.

"Owner System" is a land adopting system so anyone can adopt a small plot of land and experience rice planting first-hand. This program is designed for anyone, such as metropolitan area resident, who is looking for a break from the busy life in the big city.

The local farmer provides constant supervision about rice harvest. At the end of the season, 40 kilograms of rice is given to the field's owner.

The rice field terrace of the Oyama Senmaida is a great example of the beautiful image of a Japanese farming village. (ANI)

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