Modernizing Farm Business Management: Comparative Analysis of Japanese and Californian Rice Farming

  • Yukio KinoshitaEmail author
Part of the New Frontiers in Regional Science: Asian Perspectives book series (NFRSASIPER, volume 32)


In Japan, farming companies, particularly those that grow rice, have recently been promoted to supersede conventional small farms under increasing competitive pressure. Modernization of farm management is a key concept that measures the extent to which modern enterprise management has evolved from the family farms. We conducted unique benchmarking surveys to compare the degrees of modernization between Japanese rice-farming companies and their major international competitor, Californian rice farmers. It was found that Californian producers outperform those in Japan not only in terms of farm scale and rice yield but also in terms of farmers’ capabilities and economic modernization metrics. It was revealed that entrepreneurial advancement, information gathering, and risk-accepting behavior were influential capabilities of Japanese rice farmers with regard to their business innovations. From the perspective of global competitiveness, Japanese rice farmers need to enhance their managerial abilities to further progress in the modernization of their farm business and to get further involved in effective marketing management. Also, our analysis suggests that the research methodologies designed to explore farm management modernization originating from studies in Japan would be worth applying as an international benchmark.


Farming companies Farm modernization International benchmark Management improvement Managerial capability 



This research was supported by JSPS KAKENHI, grant numbers 24330113 and 15 K03642. The author thanks Sandy and Wally Denn of Snow Goose Farms; Tim Johnson, President & CEO of the California Rice Commission; and, especially, all of the interviewed and surveyed farmers for their time.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of AgricultureIwate UniversityMoriokaJapan

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