Red, white, blue fingers at Tokyo garden fair
Three agricultural suppliers each received a £2,000 grant from UK Trade & Investment to attend the Gardex 9th International Garden Expo Tokyo, Horticulture Week reported on 25 September.
Briers Ltd. showed a selection from its garden clothing and accessories ranges, while Irrigatia Limited promoted their solar automatic watering system. Porous Pipe exhibited its complete range of hose products, made from recycled materials.
Japan’s largest garden industry trade show, Gardex attracted over 34,000 visitors from 50 countries over its 14–16 October run.
Yakiniku comes to London
A firm specialising in taking local cuisine to the world has opened the first yakiniku (Japanese-style BBQ) restaurant in London, according to a press release issued on 24 October.
Kintan—Japan’s most popular BBQ chain—is the latest launch by Dining Innovation Ltd., which has established eateries in over 70 locations globally.
It promises an authentic yakiniku taste in an atmosphere that embodies Japanese harmony.
Online giant to help small, remote firms
Rakuten, Inc., one of the world’s biggest online retailers, is set to boost the trade of British high street shops with the launch of a new portal, The Financial Times reported on 23 October.
The firm aims to enable retailers to promote a diverse selection of products to a larger online market, targeting small businesses in remote towns in particular.
Mike Bishop, managing director of rakuten.co.uk, said the UK’s position as the biggest ecommerce market in the European Union was the reason behind the launch.
Feed-in tariff draws wind firm
A Scottish firm has received Japanese certification for its GW 133 turbine, allowing it to enter the renewables market here, Farming UK reported on 21 October.
This means Gaia-Wind Limited’s small wind turbine system—with an output of less than 20kW—is eligible for the feed-in tariff scheme, whereby the output supplied to the grid will be bought by the participating electrical power firm at a rate of ¥55/kWh for 20 years.
Johnnie Andringa, chief executive of Gaia-Wind, said Japan had the most attractive feed-in tariff in the world.
Science to help combat invasive weed
In the UK, Japanese knotweed may be no more than a mild nuisance in the future, due to developments in research to bring it under control, The Ecologist reported on 17 October.
An insect, shown in a UK quarantine facility to be a highly specialised natural enemy of the invasive non-native plant, has been released at eight sites in England and Wales.
This is the first officially sanctioned release in the European Union of an insect to combat a weed.
Scientists have reported no negative impact on any native species, and are currently working to establish the insect in the natural environment by building its population.
London, Tokyo top global “power” index
London has been ranked first, and Tokyo fourth, out of 40 major cities in the Global Power City Index 2014, The Japan Times reported on 9 October.
Compiled annually by the Institute for Urban Strategies at the Mori Memorial Foundation, the study assesses 70 indicators in six categories: economy, research and development, cultural interaction, liveability, environment, and accessibility.
London strengthened its position at the top from 2013, increasing the gap between it and New York, ranked number two.
Hiroo Ichikawa, a professor at Meiji University, said Tokyo should take advantage of hosting the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games to improve the city’s weak areas.