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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 April 18 - 24  > 6 opposition parties jointly submit bill to revive seed act
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2018 April 18 - 24 [ECONOMY]

6 opposition parties jointly submit bill to revive seed act

April 20, 2018
Six opposition parties, including the Japanese Communist Party, on April 19 jointly submitted to the House of Representatives a bill to revive the seed act.

The other five parties are the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, the Hope Party, the Group of Independents, the Liberal Party, and the Social Democratic Party.

The seed act, which was abolished in April, used to require prefectural governments to produce high-quality seeds of rice, wheat, and soy bean and promote the use of them. The scrapping of the law aroused public concern that farmers will have difficulties in obtaining seeds at affordable prices and that food safety will be undermined.

In a joint press conference held by the six parties after the submission, JCP lawmaker Tamura Taka’aki noted that the Agriculture Ministry in November 2017 instructed prefectural governments to encourage private companies to enter the business of seed production. He stressed, “This means that prefectures should provide their data to global agribusinesses to help them make money. The revival of the seed act is essential.”

Hope Party parliamentarian Goto Yuichi said that with the absence of the seed law, the price of rice may soar and seeds of genetically-modified crops may enter Japan’s market.

Past related article:
> Farmers deepen concern over growing control by multinationals of seed market [September 12, 2017]
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