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Thread: Will this effect our Hobby?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2008

    Will this effect our Hobby?

    I just found this interesting read and would like to ask everyone do you think this will affect our hobby?

    Japan population shrinks by record in 2010 - Yahoo! News

  2. #2
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Orlando, Florida
    The Japanese market for koi has been fairly stagnant for years. Koikeeping does not fit well with urban living in Japan's crowded cities, and urban youth cannot be expected to take up ponds. The population decline and aging is just another factor in the internationalization of the hobby. If you go back to the series in Koi Bito with the younger generation of breeders talking about the future of the industry, the concerns were well appreciated then. The push today is toward aquarium keeping of koi as a way to broaden the domestic Japanese market. Narita talked about it in that Koi Bito series, and we now see regular articles in Rinko about koi kept in aquaria. While the hobby continues to focus on super jumbo koi, there is this idea that the economic future for breeders lies in producing small koi that will stay small enough for aquaria.... a very different sort of koikeeping. For upscale koikeeping, the future is ever more in exporting.

    What I find interesting is that in touring the websites of the leading U.S. dealers showing their new inventory, I see far fewer koi priced over $2500 than any time in the past 15 years. In these economic times, dealers are not taking the risk of stocking many expensive fish. As a result, it seems to me that the bulk of Japanese imports in the U.S. are at a quality level that the best domestic breeders can produce, even if not yet in the numbers the market will consume. If the same is true in European markets, we need to be thankful that the Asian market is strong enough to support the breeders through recessionary times.

  3. #3
    Daihonmei dick benbow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    seattle, wa
    This situation is NOT unique to japan as a country and is not unique to aging populations as a whole, around the world.

    It does present a unique opportunity for this hobby and other organizations, to attract and hold a younger generation. To re-invent ourselves. As I look at my suiseki,bonsai,koi and ikebana organizations, the vast majority of members have grey hair. The number of younger folks is very minimal.

    This topic is not new to this board. we have talked about it over the years but I don't see much of a concensus on what to do. ( What we need is an app for that )

    Things thrown out for consideration might be merit badges for youth groups on Koi Keeping. 4-H projects culminating in a show during the fair with other livestock. Maybe american breeders can entertain school groups (biology?) to come visit the farm and learn about the knowledge it takes to run a farm.

    If we continue to sit quietly in the heating water in the pan of which we sit, it won't be too long and our hobby ( along with us) will be cooked.
    Any body got a fork?
    Dick Benbow

  4. #4
    Oyagoi Eugeneg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Near Toronto, Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by 4TEXAS View Post
    I just found this interesting read and would like to ask everyone do you think this will affect our hobby?

    Japan population shrinks by record in 2010 - Yahoo! News
    NO however there is a move in Japan to further restrict work permits eg
    nurses who wish to work in Japan will now have to write their exams in the Japanese language. Only 3 out of 600 have passed these exams. Hope that people like Brian and others will not be affected.
    As to US hobbyists it will be the accumulated yearly US M1 and Quantitative Easing added together that will most affect the hobby.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Not to worry boys, things are 'almost' as they have always been-- when one market or one region declines , the Japanese seem uncanny in finding a new one. Over the years the roulette wheel of export has shifted from the UK to the US to Korea to Taiwan, to Hong kong and Singapore, to Indonesia to Germany to Holland and now to China. Domestic consumption has not been the '1st market' for over 20 years, yet the domestic market for B grade is still quite high in Japan. Its a business of many irons in the fire. JR

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