Japan’s fresh cherry production in 2021/22 marketing year (MY) is estimated to fall to 13,000 metric tons due to severe frost damage in the largest domestic cherry-producing region. FAS/Tokyo forecasts that poor domestic production will lead to increased U.S. cherry imports in 2021/22 MY. For peaches and nectarines, FAS/Tokyo forecasts a slight recovery in Japanese production in 2021/22 MY over poor MY 2020/21 production levels.
Yamagata prefecture, located 250 miles north of Tokyo, produces approximately 76 percent of Japan’s fresh cherries, followed by Hokkaido and Yamanashi prefectures. According to the 2021 online summary of the “Yamagata and Japan’s Cherry Production, Distribution etc.” published by Yamagata prefecture’s Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries division, the number of cherry farms in Yamagata is continuously declining.
The trend reflects a country-wide agricultural challenge of a lack of farm successors and labor. In response to this trend, there is increasing consolidation of cherry orchards so the average acreage per farm is increasing (Figure 2) and partially buoys production levels. In the 2020/21 marketing year (MY: April – March), harvested area for fresh cherries in Japan fell slightly to 4,315 hectares (ha) compared to 4,320 ha in 2019/20 MY. FAS/Tokyo forecasts this trend to continue in the 2021/22 MY with harvested area expected to reach 4,310 ha.
Source – https://www.freshplaza.com