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Home>Shizuoka At A Glance: Agriculture&Fisheries

Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries in Shizuoka

Blessed by Nature

Shizuoka’s geographical location and mild climate have endowed it with rich resources in agriculture, forestry, and fisheries. The prefecture accounts for 1.2 percent of Japan’s GDP in these areas, ranking sixteenth out of forty-seven prefectures in agricultural output, eleventh in forestry products, and fourth in fishery production. In addition, Shizuoka is Japan’s leading producer of products including green tea, mandarin oranges, wasabi, bonito, mackerel, yellowfin tuna, and sakura shrimp. Other major products include mandarin oranges, melons, strawberries, baby sardines, farmed rainbow trout, and eel. Shizuoka’s location almost exactly in the middle of the country allows for easy distribution of these products across Japan.

melon

Shizuoka’s mild climate is ideal for fruit production.

The Kingdom of Green Tea

A Tradition Dating to the Thirteenth Century

Shizuoka Prefecture accounts for more than 40 percent of national green tea production and 60 percent of its distribution. With interest in green tea growing worldwide, especially the health benefits from its high catechin and vitamin contents, Shizuoka is proud to be known as “the Kingdom of Green Tea.” Green tea production dates back to the thirteenth century, when it was first introduced into Japan. Shizuoka’s dominance in green tea encompasses all types of the product itself as well as the tea-flavored food products that are gaining increasing popularity with consumers. In total, the prefecture produces over seventy billion yen’s worth of tea annually.

melon

Largest producer of green tea in Japan

A Garden of Delicious Fruits

Japan’s Center for Mandarin Oranges

Shizuoka Prefecture’s mild climate allows for the cultivation of citrus fruits, especially mandarin oranges, all over the prefecture. Seasonal citruses can be enjoyed throughout the course of almost an entire year, starting with greenhouse-grown mandarin oranges in May, followed by early-ripening mandarin oranges and Aojima mandarin oranges and continuing with mid-to-late-ripening fruits such as the harumi, shiranui, and new summer orange. Shizuoka also happens to be Japan’s number four prefecture for greenhouse melons and number three prefecture for strawberries, the latter of which include vitamin C-rich varieties such as the red-fleshed Benihoppe and the radiant, jewel-like Kirapika.

mikan

Sweet and easy-to-peel mandarin oranges

The Green Delights of Wasabi

Bringing a Japanese Specialty to the World

Wasabi (scientifically known as Wasabia japonica Matsum.) has been grown in the rich waters of Shizuoka’s characteristic streams for over four hundred years. Known for its refreshing scent and piquant flavor, wasabi’s popularity has risen as consumption of sushi and other Japanese cuisine increases around the world. As the largest producer of wasabi in Japan, Shizuoka Prefecture accounts for over 70 percent of total market distribution. In addition to taste, wasabi possesses many practical effects, including its antibacterial, anti-mold, and anti-insect properties. These, along with processed products such as pickled wasabi and other derivative products ranging from rice crackers to snacks and even ice cream, also contribute to its popularity.

wasabi

An essential item for sushi and sashimi

A Bounty of Fresh Seafood

A Wide Variety of Seasonal Catches

While ranking fourth overall in Japan for fisheries production, Shizuoka is the top producer of many specific items. Possessing some of Japan’s top fishing ports, such as those of Yaizu and Shimizu, Shizuoka is Japan’s leading prefecture for catches of bonito, yellowfin tuna, and sakura shrimp. It also claims the number one spot for farmed rainbow trout and Japanese horse mackerel and is counted among the top five prefectures for the production of baby sardines, mackerel, spiny lobster, bigeye tuna, and albacore.

shrimp

Sakura shrimp, a Shizuoka specialty