Tokyo, Aug. 3 (Jiji Press)–The agriculture ministry said Tuesday that Japan’s exports of farm and food products in January-June surged 30.8 pct from a year before to 540.7 billion yen, exceeding 500 billion for the first time in a first-half period.
The sharp rise was thanks to robust shipments of beef and alcoholic beverages such as sake.
Including goods worth 200,000 yen or less, exports in the six months totaled 577.3 billion yen, up 31.6 pct.
Consumer spending recovered in the United States and China.
Exports of food products aimed at people eating at home also fared well, reflecting moves among people to refrain from eating out amid the spread of the novel coronavirus.
In particular, exports of beef mainly from the Kyushu southwestern region roughly doubled. Exports of alcoholic beverages rose 83.1 pct, on the back of increased recognition for sake and Japanese whisky.
By region, exports rose 16.8 pct to 103 billion yen for Hong Kong, the biggest export destination for Japan.
Exports shot up 34.4 pct to 101.8 billion yen for China and 43.2 pct to 77.8 billion yen for the United States.
The Japanese government aims to boost farm and food exports to 2 trillion yen in 2025 and 5 trillion yen in 2030.
“We hope to expand exports further by promoting unified measures by the government,” Japan’s agriculture minister Kotaro Nogami told a press conference on Tuesday.