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7 October 2019 Traditional Tea-Grass Integrated System in Shizuoka as a GIAHS Site: Values and Conservation—Background of Application and Efforts after Registration
Hidehiro Inagaki, Yoshinobu Kusumoto
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Abstract

The traditional tea-grass integrated system in Shizuoka is the first example of a Globally Important Agriculture Heritage Systems (GIAHS) site in Japan that was proposed by a local government. In this paper, we report the background and circumstances leading to the recognition of this system, its registration as a GIAHS, and its current use after registration. Although semi-natural grasslands have decreased considerably in Japan, we found unique semi-natural grasslands with no pest insects and a rich biodiversity around the tea fields. These grasslands and the farming method employed are known as “Chagusaba”, which was registered as a GIAHS in 2013. However, the registration process for GIAHS was not easy, as many local farmers do not understand the value of their traditional farming methods or the GIAHS honor. After registering Chagusaba as a GIAHS, our main agenda was branding. Traditional farming, with time and effort, produces high-quality tea. As labor saving technologies in agriculture have progressed in Japan, the price of high-quality tea has declined, and consequently, the numbers of farmers performing the inefficient traditional farming methods are decreasing. It is necessary to correctly brand the Chagusaba-grown tea and reflect the value of the traditional farming method in the price. The local government of the Shizuoka Prefecture is currently working on implementing a certification system, which includes scientific evaluation using GPS, and the introduction of biodiversity indicators.

Hidehiro Inagaki and Yoshinobu Kusumoto "Traditional Tea-Grass Integrated System in Shizuoka as a GIAHS Site: Values and Conservation—Background of Application and Efforts after Registration," Journal of Resources and Ecology 10(5), 511-517, (7 October 2019). https://doi.org/10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2019.05.006
Received: 5 March 2019; Accepted: 20 May 2019; Published: 7 October 2019
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KEYWORDS
Chagusaba
GIAHS
traditional tea-grass integrated system
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