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China becomes top importer of Japanese food for 1st time

Scallops and whisky help Japan reach long-sought target of 1tn yen

Japanese sake was among the most popular items imported to China last year.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Mainland China became the largest importer of Japanese food products for the first time last year, dethroning longtime leader Hong Kong.

Exports of food, farm, forestry and marine products to mainland China surged 35.2% to 222.4 billion yen ($1.93 billion) in 2021, official data released Friday shows. Japanese sake, whisky and snack foods were among the most popular items.

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