From our counterparts overseas:
Ganari Takahashi’s first career, making pornographic movies, made him $10 million. He hopes his second, growing fruit and vegetables, will help upend a farming system that costs Japanese taxpayers $45 billion a year.Maybe I don't have the right business model (heh).
He’s one of an increasing number of Japanese farmers who say they can make a profit by leaving the world’s most heavily subsidized agricultural industry and selling directly to consumers rather than through the national cooperative.
“Profitable farming is the same as pornography,” Takahashi, 50, said in an interview near the 3.2 hectares (7.9 acres) of farmland near Tokyo he bought in 2006. “You have to create an image and make it cool.” He sells eggplants and peppers online and at his vegetable-themed restaurants.
Farmers like Takahashi are challenging Japan Agricultural Cooperatives Group, the country’s dominant distributor of rice and vegetables, which sets the price of everything from feed to fertilizer for its members. Their initiative may help cut subsidies as Japan’s new government struggles to contain spending, as well as lower prices for consumers and make trade agreements easier, said academic Masayoshi Honma. [More] [My emphasis]