Hello from Indonesia

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mrsmorotomi
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Hello from Indonesia

Post by mrsmorotomi » Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:40 pm

Hi everyone,

My husband and I are planning to move to Japan by the end of next year *fingers crossed*. The plan is to farm and live off our own land. We currently live in a small village on the outskirt of Yogyakarta in Indonesia. We have a garden where chickens and ducks just roam around. We were working at a local permaculture farm where we got our PDC, but we both love Masanobu Fukuoka and his philosophy. That's the kind of farming we would love to do in Japan.

We moved to Indonesia four years ago to do exactly what we want to do in Japan (i.e. farming). Unfortunately the political situation in Indonesia is becoming rather volatile, and I just can't be bothered to deal with overtly religious people on a daily basis, so we're moving out.

We just got back from Shikoku last week, countryside-hopping to see what communities are available in Kagawa and Tokushima prefecture. Fell in love with Shodoshima, and we're currently searching for properties there. If anyone has any inputs re: Shodoshima, or on anything at all, I'm all ears :D

I'm just so happy to have found this group online, as it is packed with super useful information, including where to buy chickens and how to get a hunting license. Yay! I'm super excited!!! I'll be going through all the posts here in the next few days :D

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Eric in Japan
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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by Eric in Japan » Thu Nov 09, 2017 11:15 pm

Welcome to JSL!
Have you ever thought about Ibaraki, or as I like to call it- "Paradise"?
I have cherry and apple trees interspersed with mikans- where else can you do that? The best beaches in Japan, and dirt cheap housing.
"... so, the cucumbers said to the cabbage, `Lettuce Go.`"

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Zasso Nouka
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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by Zasso Nouka » Fri Nov 10, 2017 5:58 am

Welcome to Japan Simple Life,

Shikoku and the surrounding islands have a great climate for year round farming and it was one of the areas my wife and I were thinking about before we settled on Chiba, there are lots of good plots there where you could set up your homestead.

One thing I have learned is that if you are planning to sell produce have your markets nearby, we have three michi no eki within easy reach of where we are and they provide a reasonable daily income plus there are several larger cities nearby that have solid farmers markets with good numbers of customers.

Best of luck and looking forward to seeing how your adventure unfolds.

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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by mrsmorotomi » Fri Nov 10, 2017 10:40 am

Eric in Japan wrote:Welcome to JSL!
Have you ever thought about Ibaraki, or as I like to call it- "Paradise"?
I have cherry and apple trees interspersed with mikans- where else can you do that? The best beaches in Japan, and dirt cheap housing.
Hi Eric,

Nope, we haven't actually thought about Ibaraki at all. How cold does it get in the winter? What drew me into Shikoku was the promise of mild winter and the possibility of buying a property with a stream/river running through it. Did you look anywhere else before you settled down in Ibaraki?

I know nothing of Ibaraki, sell it to me :D

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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by mrsmorotomi » Fri Nov 10, 2017 10:44 am

Zasso Nouka wrote:Welcome to Japan Simple Life,

Shikoku and the surrounding islands have a great climate for year round farming and it was one of the areas my wife and I were thinking about before we settled on Chiba, there are lots of good plots there where you could set up your homestead.

One thing I have learned is that if you are planning to sell produce have your markets nearby, we have three michi no eki within easy reach of where we are and they provide a reasonable daily income plus there are several larger cities nearby that have solid farmers markets with good numbers of customers.

Best of luck and looking forward to seeing how your adventure unfolds.
Hi Zasso Nouka,

Thanks for the tips! Do you need to be certified to sell?

Also, if you don't mind me asking, what made you choose Chiba instead of Shikoku?

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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by Zasso Nouka » Fri Nov 10, 2017 11:07 am

No worries

Generally you don't need any kind of certification to sell fresh produce but it's probably worth checking with the local agricultural department before buying a property. However one of the quirks of the agricultural laws is that you must be certified if you are growing on registered farmland. Buying farmland is a minefield with widely varying regulations as in theory you have to be a registered farmer but tbere are many work arounds some legitimate and some not, the shady ones can leave you with land you are forbidden from using. Always check with the local AG department and council before making a purchase. If they are keen to encourage newcomers they will help you at every step of the way if they don't want new people you can search elsewhere. Helpful municipalities can offer some rather generous grants to attract new folk.

We settled on Chiba primarily because Mrs Nouka's family are nearby and those family connections have been a massive help and also because the local council were very positive about encouraging new people to move into the area and we have many sales routes nearby. Plus on the whole Chiba has a pretty favourable climate for year round farming.

Sorry for my brevity, typing this on my smartphone.

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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by gonbechan » Fri Nov 10, 2017 6:23 pm

Welcome mrsmorotomi, lovely to have some more 'girls'.

Shodoshima is a beautiful place but considering it is only accessible by ferry, I would think twice about settling if you wanted to sell produce.
It has a bit of tourism but mostly for the olives grown there.
Even if you were thinking on a box style produce service, takyubin would be more expensive from an island.

Shikoku is a wonderful area, has milder weather but takes a lot of typhoon hits on the Pacific side. The Setonaikai side is much more sheltered.
Shikoku is also not that active when it comes to earthquakes and has no active volcanos.

Looking forward to hearing more about your search for the perfect land.

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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by mrsmorotomi » Fri Nov 10, 2017 7:39 pm

Zasso Nouka wrote: Generally you don't need any kind of certification to sell fresh produce but it's probably worth checking with the local agricultural department before buying a property. However one of the quirks of the agricultural laws is that you must be certified if you are growing on registered farmland. Buying farmland is a minefield with widely varying regulations as in theory you have to be a registered farmer but tbere are many work arounds some legitimate and some not, the shady ones can leave you with land you are forbidden from using. Always check with the local AG department and council before making a purchase. If they are keen to encourage newcomers they will help you at every step of the way if they don't want new people you can search elsewhere. Helpful municipalities can offer some rather generous grants to attract new folk.
Wow. Thanks for this. I'll let mrmorotomi know and I think I'll delegate this bit to him. My Japanese is not good enough to search for information online. We thought about buying a big enough residential land (about one hectare), so that we don't have to worry about the agricultural laws. The only thing we'd have to worry about is paying a higher tax on residential land. I'm not very fond of the idea of living and farming on two separate land. How do you do it in Chiba?

Also, does anyone know whether we would need permit for keeping livestocks?

Thanks again!

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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by mrsmorotomi » Fri Nov 10, 2017 7:58 pm

gonbechan wrote:Welcome mrsmorotomi, lovely to have some more 'girls'.

Shodoshima is a beautiful place but considering it is only accessible by ferry, I would think twice about settling if you wanted to sell produce.
It has a bit of tourism but mostly for the olives grown there.
Even if you were thinking on a box style produce service, takyubin would be more expensive from an island.

Shikoku is a wonderful area, has milder weather but takes a lot of typhoon hits on the Pacific side. The Setonaikai side is much more sheltered.
Shikoku is also not that active when it comes to earthquakes and has no active volcanos.

Looking forward to hearing more about your search for the perfect land.
Hi Gonbechan,

Happy to be here :D

Yes, we thought about the access. After asking some new "locals" there, we figured it shouldn't be a problem, as long as we don't make farming our main income. Shodoshima has six ports scattered on different parts of the island, with ferries heading to different cities both in Honshu and Shikoku main island. There are hospitals and plenty of schools. Enough to feel rural and off-grid, but within 20 minutes drive we can see the town. Plus there's the Setouchi Triennale! Art is actually pulling people back into the island, and there's a big demand for properties in Shodoshima, which makes it more difficult for us to find land since we don't live in Japan.

Where are you based?

Great to know about the lack of earthquakes and strong typhoon. I was more worried about that, if anything happens then we'll be stuck on an island :(

Thanks!

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Re: Hello from Indonesia

Post by Zasso Nouka » Sat Nov 11, 2017 5:54 am

mrsmorotomi wrote: We thought about buying a big enough residential land (about one hectare), so that we don't have to worry about the agricultural laws. The only thing we'd have to worry about is paying a higher tax on residential land.
The tax on a hectare of residential land would be eye wateringly high I should imagine
mrsmorotomi wrote: I'm not very fond of the idea of living and farming on two separate land. How do you do it in Chiba?
We live and farm on the same contiguous parcel of land but the area taken up by the house, garden and access road is zoned as residential the rest as mountain and forest but that isn't always the norm. Most other farmers in our village have their land a short tractor's drive away from the house.
mrsmorotomi wrote:Also, does anyone know whether we would need permit for keeping livestocks?
If we're talking a few ducks and chickens then they are classed as pets and no license necessary. Think you can get away with a couple of goats as well (Eric, do you have goats ?). Not sure about pigs, cattle or sheep, you might need a license there. When looking at potential properties don't mention animals at all to anyone, that could turn the community against you as a potential neighbour. We lost a great property because we happened to mention we'd like to keep a few chickens and maybe a pig and the local community pressured the owner not to sell as they were worried about the smell.