Biodiversity / Food / Water

December 24, 2006


Japan's Food Self-Sufficiency Ratio Unchanged at 40% for 8 Years

Keywords: Food Government 

Japan's food self-sufficiency ratio for FY2005 was 40 percent on a calorie basis, unchanged for 8 consecutive years from 1998, according to the "Food Balance Sheet, FY2005" released on August 10, 2006 by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. Domestic production of potatoes and seafood declined in FY2005, but soybean and fruit production increased as they recovered from typhoon damage in FY2004. As a result, the FY2005 self-sufficiency ratio remained the same as in FY2004.

The major cause for the leveling off of Japan's food self-sufficiency ratio is the continuing decline in the consumption of rice, which is largely supplied by domestic production. Another factor is the low percentage of livestock feed produced domestically, as livestock feed is counted in calculating the self-sufficiency ratio. Per capita consumption of rice in FY2005 was 61.4 kilograms, down 0.1 kilogram from the previous year. The domestic supply of nutritious livestock feed grains, particularly corn, was extremely low.

Japan's food self-sufficiency ratio is remarkably low compared to other industrialized countries. Data from 2002 gives food self sufficiency ratios as follows: Australia 230%, France 130%, the United States 119%, Germany 91%, and the United Kingdom 74%. The Japanese government is now striving to increase this ratio, and has set a target of 45 percent by FY2015.

Posted: 2006/12/24 11:43:16 AM
Japanese version