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Business trends

Vietnam's rice paddies offer Japan's farmers chance to grow

Local cultivation in emerging Asian markets proves cheaper than exports

A woman wearing a traditional hat sits in a rice field outside Hoi An, Vietnam.   © Reuters

NIIGATA, Japan -- Japan's rice farmers are venturing into the rest of Asia to grow their crops locally. Supported by an increase in the number of Japanese restaurants across the region, the farmers are teaming up with locals to apply their expertise, hoping to ride the strong brand power that Japonica rice enjoys.

The trend lets locals indulge their taste in high-quality Japanese rice without paying stratospheric prices for imported versions, as some wealthy Chinese are doing.

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