Category Archives: Economic Activities

Promoting Fukushima Produce, Through Anime

Fukushima Prefecture has gone to great lengths to challenge commonly held perceptions, often unfounded, about food produced in the region in the aftermath of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami and the incident at the TEPCO Dai-Ichi plant.

Despite the Japanese government, as well as international observers and scientists, confirming that produce from the area is safe to consume,  the region which was the fourth largest producer in Japan in terms of agriculture has seen the value in sale price of local produce fall to two-thirds of what it was before 2011.

As part of a multi-channel approach, the prefecture has commissioned a series of short anime films to tell consumers about local produce, which have seen over 2.6 million views on YouTube and many of which have been from overseas.

While animation may seem an unusual PR tool to a UK audience, the videos have seen 70,000 views from France (which has a similar animation and cartoon culture; think Asterix or Tintin in Belgium), underlining the strength of anime and manga as a soft power tool for Japan, particularly in some areas where thought to be effective such as  North America and Asia.

The English version of the first video can be seen below, followed by links to the others beneath:

“Cucumber, Power Green’s prickly head.”

“Akatsuki sherbet”

“Nameko N-1.”

“Ten no tsubu, good to the last grain.”


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