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Current status and future direction on commercial production and use of bio-fertilizers in Japan


Bio-fertilizer, Bradyrhizobium, mycorrhizae, Japan


Appropriate use of bio-fertilizers and bio-pesticides for small-scale farmers in ASPAC region


WS - Workshop




Asia (East and Pacific)


Currently, percent of annual self-sufficient of soybean and corn seeds are extremely at low levels in Japan. Four million tons of soybean seed and 16 million tons of corn seed are imported from other countries such as US and Brazil and so forth. Large part of the imported soybean and corn are used for feeds of domestic animals. This caused serious problems concerning a large amount of waste obtained from animal husbandry. Under this circumstance, various kinds of the organic nitrogen fertilizers containing the waste supply to farmers’ fields, therefore a large part of famers in Japan cannot deeply consider to be importance of bio-fertilizer use. Japanese government does not authorize most of bio-fertilizers with exception of VA mycorrhiza. However, the VA mycorrhiza is an ordinance-designated soil conditioner in Japan. Production of the VA mycorrhiza was thirty-five tons in Japan at 2004. Output of the VA mycorrhiza showed the highest value at 2001, but the production is currently tending to downward. Tokachi Federation of Agricultural Cooperatives (TFAC: Japanese abbreviation: Tokachi Nokyoren) in Hokkaido, which is the major organization producing and distributing the rhizobiumbio-fertilizers in Japan. In TFAC, 3 kinds of biofertilizers are produced and sold presently. “Mamezo” is a normal type of bio-fertilizer for soybeans, azuki beans and phaseolus beans. Rhizobiumand Bradyrhizobiumare mixed with peat and the natural organic matters. The second type of bio-fertilizer is “R-Processing Seeds.” This means leguminous seeds inoculated with rhizobia. Finaltype of bio-fertilizer is “Hyper Coating Seeds”. In hyper coating seeds, leguminous grass seed coated by rhizobia within the capsule of calcium carbonate. These bio-fertilizers are being used by about 80 % of farmers in Hokkaido. Furthermore, treatment using Mamezocontaining Bradyrhizobiumand Azospirilluminoculants to soybean showed 35% increase of soybean seeds production in comparison to that of treatment without inoculants in field testat 2000.

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