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Photo Gallery

Rice Photo Gallery III  

Kazuko Tomiyama's 'Rice in Japan' Calendar (2003)

Home for heritage rice

(Hikawa Town, Shimane Prefecture)

Black, red, yellow, violet, brown and white, ancient strains of rice come in different colors. Merely to delight the eye, ancient varieties are here grown on a half-hectare field that policy has set aside from cropping. Political blunders prevent farmers from keeping Japan self-sufficient. They block the spirit of rice culture, of living interdependently in a cooperative way of life that has endured through generations.

This Rainbow Paddy was started by groups of farmers and concerned citizens as a resolute protest against politicians who are effectively betraying the cultural heritage of Japan.

Food cannot be grown on set-aside fields. Undaunted, a rice dealer sparked this movement by suggesting that at least the straw could be used for handicrafts. By the field sign reads, 'Remember the rice culture of Japan. Think again about rice, our staple food.'     

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