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Thread: what is the concept and role of bloodline in breeding?

  1. #11
    Daihonmei dick benbow's Avatar
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    "As much as Japanese culture honors tradition and ancestry, the real hallmark is constant striving for a higher level of accomplishment."

    In all my involvement in things japanese, I cannot think of a truer statement.....right on Mike....spot on!

  2. #12
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    Dick, I know you are a true japanophile. My interest has been pretty much limited to koi and history. The history is remarkable. When forced in the 1850s to 'open' to trade, the Japanese people saw that their feudalism no longer worked. Rather than become like China, there was a determination to re-make the nation. The shogunate fell, the Meiji Restoration set off a conscious effort to adopt and adapt. By 1905, just a half century, Japan was defeating imperial Russia on land and on the seas and recognized as one of the world's powers. From feudalism to industrial giant in just 50 years. It is an amazing accomplishment unequaled by any other nation or people in so short a time. That determination to rise higher must have deep cultural roots. .....Perhaps from two thousand years of wanting respect while knowing China was the center of everything?

  3. #13
    Jumbo sacicu's Avatar
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    Mike,

    While culture of Japanese is interesting. I am more inclined to see the growth in the development of the koi industry in Japan as based on necessity.

    Fact is improvements in koi is because of competition. Dainichi is willing to spend millions of dollars for several momotaro's oyagoi because they have the financial resources to do so and accept that momotaro's impressive growth rate in showa variety might help infuse the next generation of faster growing dainichi showa. Momotaro is willing to sell as long as the price is right. It has been this way in Japan. Call it cultural cooperation, perhaps. IMO, I just call it necessity. In a very competitive market, one has to keep up or close shop. No big successful farm in Japan can compete in the cheap low quality koi market controlled by many farms in different countries but no country can compete in high quality koi which Japan dominates.

    Now here's the question? How is it that their local koi collectors in Japan are shrinking year by year while the yen value has been steadily shrinking? Why is it that there are much fewer koi farms in Japan now?

  4. #14
    Oyagoi yerrag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sacicu View Post
    Mike,

    While culture of Japanese is interesting. I am more inclined to see the growth in the development of the koi industry in Japan as based on necessity.

    Fact is improvements in koi is because of competition. Dainichi is willing to spend millions of dollars for several momotaro's oyagoi because they have the financial resources to do so and accept that momotaro's impressive growth rate in showa variety might help infuse the next generation of faster growing dainichi showa. Momotaro is willing to sell as long as the price is right. It has been this way in Japan. Call it cultural cooperation, perhaps. IMO, I just call it necessity. In a very competitive market, one has to keep up or close shop. No big successful farm in Japan can compete in the cheap low quality koi market controlled by many farms in different countries but no country can compete in high quality koi which Japan dominates.

    Now here's the question? How is it that their local koi collectors in Japan are shrinking year by year while the yen value has been steadily shrinking? Why is it that there are much fewer koi farms in Japan now?
    Japan has been in recession since 1990. And they don't have authority to print US dollars like the US Federal Reserve any which way.

  5. #15
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sacicu View Post
    Mike,

    While culture of Japanese is interesting. I am more inclined to see the growth in the development of the koi industry in Japan as based on necessity.

    Fact is improvements in koi is because of competition. Dainichi is willing to spend millions of dollars for several momotaro's oyagoi because they have the financial resources to do so and accept that momotaro's impressive growth rate in showa variety might help infuse the next generation of faster growing dainichi showa. Momotaro is willing to sell as long as the price is right. It has been this way in Japan. Call it cultural cooperation, perhaps. IMO, I just call it necessity. In a very competitive market, one has to keep up or close shop. No big successful farm in Japan can compete in the cheap low quality koi market controlled by many farms in different countries but no country can compete in high quality koi which Japan dominates.

    Now here's the question? How is it that their local koi collectors in Japan are shrinking year by year while the yen value has been steadily shrinking? Why is it that there are much fewer koi farms in Japan now?
    You are certainly correct about the economic forces. I do not think the response to economic factors can be separated from the cultural environment. Culture directs how the potential choices are perceived and which are acceptable.

    I get fascinated by how breeders sell potential oyagoi to their competitors. It does not occur in an ordinary transaction. Each such sale is a more serious matter than a sale to a hobbyist. (There are stories of Maeda suffering a form of ostracism within the breeder community due to having acquired koi in the guise of being a hobbyist and then using the koi as oyagoi when establishing Momotaro. Obviously, I do not know if such tales are true or much exaggerated.) Why would anyone help a competitor by providing the means to eventually take away customers? The money paid may be substantial, but one is selling the fruit of decades of work and allowing the competitor to catch up that much more quickly... or, at least, giving the opportunity to do so. After the 2004 earthquake decimated so many Niigata breeders, there was an opportunity for the southern Japan breeders to take over the market. Instead of acting in pure self-interest, many supplied replacement oyagoi to their Niigata competitors. Sakai Fish Farm made it possible for several of Niigata's Kohaku breeders to re-start. It is hard to imagine Microsoft doing such a favor for Apple. The apprenticeship custom wherein the son(s) of a breeder will go to work for another breeder for years to learn the business, and then return with deep knowledge of a competitor's techniques and direction, is unlike any other business I know. I cannot imagine British Airways bringing in the future CEO of another airline to learn the business. Some things can only be understood in the context of the culture and tradition.

  6. #16
    Honmei ricshaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
    I get fascinated by how breeders sell potential oyagoi to their competitors. It does not occur in an ordinary transaction. Each such sale is a more serious matter than a sale to a hobbyist. (There are stories of Maeda suffering a form of ostracism within the breeder community due to having acquired koi in the guise of being a hobbyist and then using the koi as oyagoi when establishing Momotaro. Obviously, I do not know if such tales are true or much exaggerated.) Why would anyone help a competitor by providing the means to eventually take away customers? The money paid may be substantial, but one is selling the fruit of decades of work and allowing the competitor to catch up that much more quickly... or, at least, giving the opportunity to do so. After the 2004 earthquake decimated so many Niigata breeders, there was an opportunity for the southern Japan breeders to take over the market. Instead of acting in pure self-interest, many supplied replacement oyagoi to their Niigata competitors. Sakai Fish Farm made it possible for several of Niigata's Kohaku breeders to re-start. It is hard to imagine Microsoft doing such a favor for Apple. The apprenticeship custom wherein the son(s) of a breeder will go to work for another breeder for years to learn the business, and then return with deep knowledge of a competitor's techniques and direction, is unlike any other business I know. I cannot imagine British Airways bringing in the future CEO of another airline to learn the business. Some things can only be understood in the context of the culture and tradition.
    And this gets us to the question; Can a person who wants to breed Koi obtain a breeder's bloodline by purchasing several $500.00 Koi?

  7. #17
    Jumbo sacicu's Avatar
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    $500 dollar oyagoi would probably get less chance of obtaining the best qualities of an oyagoi as these would not be the best representation.

    Very large successful koi breeders knows this well. New or starting breeders around the world think otherwise and think bloodline is a bloodline and its just a numbers and facilities game.

  8. #18
    Oyagoi yerrag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
    You are certainly correct about the economic forces. I do not think the response to economic factors can be separated from the cultural environment. Culture directs how the potential choices are perceived and which are acceptable.

    I get fascinated by how breeders sell potential oyagoi to their competitors. It does not occur in an ordinary transaction. Each such sale is a more serious matter than a sale to a hobbyist. (There are stories of Maeda suffering a form of ostracism within the breeder community due to having acquired koi in the guise of being a hobbyist and then using the koi as oyagoi when establishing Momotaro. Obviously, I do not know if such tales are true or much exaggerated.) Why would anyone help a competitor by providing the means to eventually take away customers? The money paid may be substantial, but one is selling the fruit of decades of work and allowing the competitor to catch up that much more quickly... or, at least, giving the opportunity to do so. After the 2004 earthquake decimated so many Niigata breeders, there was an opportunity for the southern Japan breeders to take over the market. Instead of acting in pure self-interest, many supplied replacement oyagoi to their Niigata competitors. Sakai Fish Farm made it possible for several of Niigata's Kohaku breeders to re-start. It is hard to imagine Microsoft doing such a favor for Apple. The apprenticeship custom wherein the son(s) of a breeder will go to work for another breeder for years to learn the business, and then return with deep knowledge of a competitor's techniques and direction, is unlike any other business I know. I cannot imagine British Airways bringing in the future CEO of another airline to learn the business. Some things can only be understood in the context of the culture and tradition.
    The Japanese koi breeding industry and its members need each other. While they compete against each other, they benefit from each other in more ways than imaginable. Together they harness economies of scale that present them advantages that are hard to replicate elsewhere. Think Silicon Valley. Think China's solar cell manufacturing. Also think the Philippine's call center outsourcing business.

    It is wise for SFF to provide breeder stock to bootstrap the recovery of the Niigata breeders. It is not merely goodwill it is after. Having many breeders each independently develop their own bloodlines make for a robust gene pool that are less likely to harbor genetic defects that come with inbreeding. Furthermore, SFF stands to benefit for when it identifies a promising koi from another breeder, it can acquire it and use it as oyagoi for its own breeding efforts. It would be reasonable think that it is among those who stand to benefit the most from such a symbiotic relationship, as with its numerically superior breeding capacity it will likely and quickly harvest the fruits of improvements in its own gene pool.

  9. #19
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sacicu View Post
    $500 dollar oyagoi would probably get less chance of obtaining the best qualities of an oyagoi as these would not be the best representation.

    Very large successful koi breeders knows this well. New or starting breeders around the world think otherwise and think bloodline is a bloodline and its just a numbers and facilities game.

    Yes, we see this so often with domestic breeders. And, there is a failure to understand that no bloodline produces only koi with the traits that define the bloodline. There are always more to be culled than those matching all the traits that cause a line to be deemed desirable. The very best oyagoi in the world will give poor results if in the hands of person who lacks the eye to see which should be kept and which should not. Success in the long term requires even more. The breeder's eye has to identify the little ones who possess traits that move beyond the level of the oyagoi. The novice breeder generally produces koi lesser than the level of the oyagoi. The experienced breeder can produce koi of equivalent stature. It is a master breeder who can rise to a higher level, truly seeing when there is a positive difference.
    Akai-San, ricshaw and Reza like this.

  10. #20
    Jumbo Akai-San's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sacicu View Post
    $500 dollar oyagoi would probably get less chance of obtaining the best qualities of an oyagoi as these would not be the best representation.

    Very large successful koi breeders knows this well. New or starting breeders around the world think otherwise and think bloodline is a bloodline and its just a numbers and facilities game.
    So true. I think bloodline gives you a presumed standard (not really knowing what you have), but whether or not one has the understanding and or skill to utilize or benefit from a bloodline...that is the journey for most keepers. It is always nice to wish and hope that one will get lucky in finding a couple nice examples in the given gene pool, but it is mother nature that ultimately holds the key. You also need a lot of luck as well. Science will only get you so far. Just my thoughts during my development...

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