Industry in Iwate
In 2012, Iwate’s agricultural output was 2nd in Tohoku and 11th in all of Japan, equaling 247.6 billion yen. Iwate is blessed with agricultural resources because of a large amount of arable land and a favorable climate. The various regions of the prefecture produce agricultural goods that make use of the unique characteristics of the land, and we produce food for the entire country.
In recent years, along with our fields for rice and livestock, we have developed fields for horticulture, growing such plants as gentian flowers （the highest output in the nation） and spinach. We aim to structure our agricultural industry to have a high output, supported by rice, horticultural products, and livestock products.
Iwate’s forestry product in 2011 was around 16.8 billion yen, which was 6th in the country and 4% of Japan’s total forestry product.
Forests make up around 77% of the prefectural area as of 2011, and 67% of that land consists of privately-owned forests. 60% of those privately-owned forests are made up of trees older than 41 years, so we are truly blessed with lumber resources. We are also dedicated to cultivating capital involved with the industry, by providing forest management training, creating service roads throughout the forests, developing high quality/high functioning wooden goods, and encouraging the use of biomass energy created through wooden by-products.
Iwate’s marine product output was 3rd in Tohoku and 16th in the country in 2012, measuring around 28.9 billion yen. Iwate’s Sanriku coastline is a rias coast structure, meaning it’s a jagged coastline dotted with many bays and inlets. This provides a quiet, gentle marine environment that encourages the formation of underwater reefs, which in turn invites a treasure trove of wildlife to the area. Our awabi （abalone） output is number one in the nation, and we catch the second highest amount of salmon in the country following Hokkaido. We’re a leading prefecture in creating and nurturing our marine fisheries industry.
In order to support this industry, we have outfitted our coast with fishery facilities, ports, infrastructure for the fishing towns surrounding the area, and distribution networks for their products. We also encourage the distribution of salmon and abalone seedlings for their cultivation in fishing nurseries.
Our construction industry plays a direct role in building and maintaining the infrastructure needed for industry and life in Iwate. The industry also plays a large role in securing the safety of our people following natural disasters. The construction industry employs 10% of our workforce and supports our local employment and economy.
In recent years, the industry has been suffering from a decrease in construction investment, so it is spreading out to activities that make use of its administration expertise: developing new recycling technologies and techniques, green industry, and concrete repair. It is also reaching out to other fields like agriculture, forestry, environmental recycling, and nursing-care for the elderly.
Iwate’s manufacturing industry includes cutting-edge technological fields and automobile-related industries, and the government helps to develop industrial sites and regional industries. The output of our entire industry was 2.2295 trillion yen in 2012, with large roles played by the manufacturing of freight carrying machines/devices contributing 30.8%, and food processing reaching 13.7%.
Iwate is aiming to become a manufacturing hub for the entire country, including automobile and semi-conductor producers who make finished goods, as well as the small-to-medium sized businesses that support the infrastructure of those industries.
Additionally, our food industry includes agriculture, food production, restaurants, and retail, and, in hopes to cultivate the entire industry as an added value maker, we are focusing on businesses that are expected to develop in the future.
In 2012, over 27 million tourists visited Iwate.
As the second largest prefecture after Hokkaido, Iwate is home to gorgeous scenic views, a richly-storied history, traditional arts, cuisine, and a number of unique tourist attractions. The Iwate government has developed suggestions for trips that explore the region’s unique features, and is trying to attract more visitors to the prefecture.
We’d love for people to tour the entire area of Iwate, from the inland to the coast. We particularly recommend our World Heritage Site Hiraizumi in the south, and Kuji City on the northern coast （the location of the popular drama Ama-chan）.
We are also developing our website as a tool to effectively attract visitors, as well as beefing up our foreign language services at various tourism facilities. We’re working with Aomori and Akita Prefectures and the rest of the region to create a Tohoku open for tourism.
Office of International Affairs, Department of Homeland Promotion
(020-8570) 10-1 Uchimaru, Morioka City, Iwate Prefecture, JAPAN
Phone number:019-629-5765 Facsimile:019-629-5254
You can access our question form here.