Japanese Demand for Vegetables and Vegetable Seed
The Japanese people utilize a large amount of vegetables in their diet. The traditional base food, rice, is supplemented with other foods such as fish, vegetables, and fruit. A large selection of fresh and processed vegetables is imported by the Japanese each year. Vegetables that are available during Japan's off-season are relatively easy to market. Washington State farmers produce a wide variety of vegetables, as reported previously. Proximity to markets, seasonality, and marketing priorities all influence the amount of vegetables entering the fresh market. Vegetables grown for the fresh market will, in the long term, require production systems that provide adequate land area and climatic conditions, cheap, plentiful labor, appropriate technology to provide a quality product, and adequate handling and transporting systems to deliver the product to the market. Production of vegetables for freezing was 30,000 tons in 1970 and it increased to 100,000 tons in 1984. Imports now occupy approximately 80 percent of the market demand for frozen vegetables.