A U.S. Department of Agriculture office in Japan has launched a campaign to get Japanese to eat more U.S.-grown fruits and reverse declining consumption rates in the country.
The USDA’s Agricultural Trade Office in Tokyo hopes the campaign, called Enjoy Fruits!, will reverse consumption rates that have been declining since the 1970s, according to a report from ATO Tokyo.
In 2008, fruit consumption in Japan was less than half of what it was in 1973, according to the report.
Smaller families and more people eating out are among the causes of the decline.
As part of the “Enjoy Fruits!” campaign, ATO Japan published a guidebook, “Future Fruits,” which promotes the ideas that fruits are healthful and flavorful and can help maintain beauty.
The guidebook is being distributed to Japanese food industry buyers at ATO Japan trade showcases and other events.
The campaign aims to increase consumption of U.S. fruits in Japan through collaborations with organizers of arts, sports, music and other cultural events.
Improving economic conditions in Japan are increasing demand for U.S.-grown produce and other high-value U.S. products, according to the report.
U.S. growers also have an opportunity because of lower domestic production in Japan.
Japanese growers are producing fewer apples, pears, grapes, mandarins and other fruits than they were a decade ago, according to ATO Japan.