Thursday, June 1, 2023

 Hello everyone. Today I would like to share with you an idea for a startup company that I have been thinking about.

My idea was a business related to Japanese rice. More specifically, we operate an e-commerce site that sells rice to overseas customers.

I have grandparents in Akita, Japan. The situation is similar in all rural areas of Japan, but Akita Prefecture is also depopulated to the extent that it is said to disappear in 20 years, and young people are leaving for the cities.

Managing rice paddies is very difficult and many elderly people have abandoned their rice paddies. My grandparents abandoned their rice paddies about two years ago.

However, Akita rice is really delicious. When I lived alone in Yokohama, I used to eat the cheapest rice at the supermarket, but when I visited my grandmother's house, I was surprised at how different the rice tasted.

Also, Akita is a truly beautiful land, and there is really nothing. It takes me 15 minutes to drive to a convenience store, flying down a national highway. I love Tokyo and Kanagawa of course, but I love Akita where there is nothing. I do not at all want Akita to be like Tokyo, for example. It is perfect as it is. 
However, it is very painful to see Akita continue to decline. I think Akita needs a new form of industry.

Therefore, I wanted to set up a business to operate rice fields privately and sell rice to people overseas and people who are particular about rice.

However, there are several problems. The first is that the rice paddies are operated by "Tonari Gumi," a culture unique to the rural areas of Japan. Tonari Gumi" means a group. Several houses in a neighborhood get together to form a group to manage the rice paddies, and the group delivers rice to the JA. Each group leases farming equipment from the JA. There is also a water rights issue.

But now that I am in Toronto, I am beginning to think that even though it is difficult to produce and sell rice privately, it might be realistic to operate an e-commerce site for exporting rice overseas. Here in Toronto, there are many Japanese restaurants, and even if not, there are many restaurants that serve rice. However, I think that the rice is not very tasty lol
Additionally, nowadays there are sushi restaurants all over the world, and the quality is improving. I believe that demand for high-qualit-rice will increase in the future.

But even if you come up with something, you need to be able to execute it. I wish I could acquire that kind of ability in the near future...

Thank you for reading!


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