The Story of Ibusuki Yasai no Oukoku

They have established agriculture as a business. Ibusuki Yasai no Okoku Co, However, there were many hardships at the start of the business.
Here is the story of “Ibusuki Yasai no Oukoku,” led by its representative, Ryoma Yoshimoto, who worked hard, covered in sweat and dirt, believing in dreams and success.

The stable life of the company has changed drastically, to be confronted with a harsh reality.

My father was a sailor.
He was highly trusted by other fellow sailors and earned a great income.
My mother also worked as a chambermaid in a hotel, and our family lived a stable life.
However, our life took a drastic turn when we were faced with the harsh reality of debt.

It all started when my father quit his job as a sailor and started selling fruits and vegetables at the recommendation of an acquaintance.
This sudden venture into a different field of business did not go well, and as a result, he was saddled with debts.
At the time, I was working as a caregiver, which had nothing to do with my father’s business, but I feared that it would be difficult to make a living as usual.

Vegetable jobs that didn't work out, And yet, it was also a vegetable job that tried to make a comeback.

How would I get out of this situation?
Ultimately, the means I chose was “farming.
It may seem unthinkable under normal circumstances. Quitting the nursing care company I had been working for and daring to try farming again, which my father had suffered from. You would think that I should have chosen another career anyway. However, I was convinced that the vegetable business/farming could be profitable, depending on how it was done.
I used to buy vegetables from farmers and sell them. Since this method is just a margin business, the profit margin is low and the purchase price fluctuates depending on the quality of the vegetables.
Inventory puts pressure on profits, and low gross margins mean that the income you end up with is also low. And since I did not know much about the rules of distribution or the produce market, failure was inevitable.
After seeing such cases, I decided to start farming, believing that the only way to make a profit was to grow and sell my own produce.

Adversity is a Period of Growth, Thoroughly Study Agricultural Management

It is no exaggeration to say that my full-fledged commitment to the agricultural business began with paying off my debts.
First, I set the amount of annual sales at 200 million yen, from which I set a goal of generating 20 million yen in ordinary income.
We thought about what we could do to achieve this goal and continued to immerse ourselves in practical management studies every day. Through repeated failures and trial and error, I almost failed many times. Each time, I remembered my painful past and said, “What the hell! I will make a lot of money and pay it back! I’m going to make a lot of money and pay it back! I still remember the feeling of “I’m going to make a lot of money and pay it back! Many people helped me.
I met local masters, senior farmers in Ibusuki, corporate farmers in Osumi, and many people in and outside of the prefecture, and with their warm encouragement, I was able to somehow get my business on track.
In the five years between the ages of 25 and 30, I was able to achieve my sales goal of over 200 million yen.
Now, the business has grown to the point where it sells more than 400 million yen a year. It is usually said that it is incredibly difficult to make 100 million yen in sales in vegetable farming.
However, I have never thought that it is hard work. This is because I have experienced more hardship in my 20s, when everyone else in the world was in the prime of their lives and wanted to have fun. I have gritted my teeth and worked hard to protect the lives of my employees, their families, and my own family.

Calculate costs, focus on profitable vegetables.
Lettuce production is the turning point.

One of the difficulties of growing vegetables is that the pricing format is somewhat fixed and we cannot set our own prices.
Generally speaking, vegetables grown and harvested by farmers are shipped to central and local wholesale markets in various regions through organizations such as production area brokers and agricultural cooperatives, where wholesalers sell them through auction or relative sales to intermediate wholesalers and trading participants. In other words, producers do not have the authority to determine prices, and we gain nothing from our efforts.
Kagoshima Prefecture is a major producer of peas, fava beans, and other beans, and is the largest producer in Japan, accounting for 30-40% of the domestic market share.
When I started farming, I grew snap peas, fava beans, and lettuce. This was because there were many producers of items such as cabbage and radish, whose prices did not fluctuate, and they tended to be price-competitive.
However, no matter how good the snap peas and fava beans are, it is outsiders who set the prices.
Let’s concentrate on lettuce then, shall we? Lettuce, a leafy vegetable that is easily affected by the weather, is highly marketable and its price fluctuates. Conversely, lettuce production requires both vegetable production and management sense.
Let’s work hard to produce good lettuce and make a profit. We calculated the cost of producing lettuce, not just by the numbers on the bottom line, but by calculating the balance of costs and revenues. How much does it cost to produce one piece of lettuce? When we analyzed how many hours it took to grow the lettuce, we realized that we had been wasting a lot of money. The more we reviewed everything from expensive fertilizers and pesticides to cardboard boxes and supplies, the more profit we could make. When I have money in my pocket, I am able to try things I couldn’t do before, and my motivation has become even more powerful.
It is no exaggeration to say that Ibusuki Yasai no Oukoku would not exist today if we had not been engaged in lettuce production. We might not have been able to escape from the unprofitable, negative cycle.
We had an encounter with a major hamburger chain that insists on food safety and security by providing a stable supply of high quality leafy vegetables such as lettuce and cabbage, which led to new encounters with other customers, and the positive chain of events continued to expand. The production of standard lettuce was a turning point for me.

Smiles on the faces of everyone involved in the kingdom Being rich is such a blessing!

Farming is a hard and painful job.
You have to be on your toes 365 days a year, rain or shine. However, when I produce good vegetables, the harshness of the work blows away.
Since I started farming in 2010, my family, my brother’s family, and my subordinate’s family all celebrated the New Year with smiles on their faces. Every year, I feel deeply how happy it is to be rich.
Now, my greatest joy is when people tell me that the vegetables I grow are “delicious.
We will continue to grow vegetables so that people all over Japan and the world can enjoy the vegetables that our children and grandchildren will eat and say, “Delicious.

Finally.... To give back, I want to contribute to my hometown and Japan

Recently, I have become acquainted with a senior colleague in the same business who was a great help to me when I was young. At the time, I was so determined not to be outdone in vegetable production that I was a bit cocky towards him.
The person, who was selling vegetables using his own unique methods, was explaining to me the importance of building a network of friends and colleagues among growers. At the time, I could not understand why rivals should become friends with each other.
However, now that I am in a position to make a living from agriculture and protect the livelihoods of many employees, I can understand his business attitude. I now truly respect his wish and desire to make not only himself but also the people around him happy. I believe that I am the person I am today thanks to the help of many senior farmers, and also thanks to the customers who took good care of me.
From now on, it is my turn to return the favor.
The current Japanese agriculture industry is facing a difficult situation where the market size is shrinking, the number of farmers is decreasing, and the population of farmers is also decreasing.
Therefore, I am considering increasing the number of new farmers and other farmers and organizing them to increase profitability, develop sales channels and markets, and promote agriculture as a highly profitable business.
At “Ibusuki Yasai no Okoku (Kingdom of Saiya),” we would like to nurture young farmers in the region by proactively accepting and training the successors of prospective new farmers and farmers who are training to become farmers.
We originally started farming to pay off our debts, but we have been able to reach this point thanks to the help of the local people, our many customers throughout Japan, and the end users who buy our customers’ products and menus. That is why I have a very strong desire to contribute to “food” in my hometown of Ibusuki and in Japan.
We will continue to do our best to pass on our agricultural business know-how to the next generation and to help Ibusuki’s agriculture, Kyushu’s agriculture, and by extension, Japan’s agriculture.

We supply safe and secure vegetables with careful attention.

We look forward to hearing from you by phone or through our contact form.

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Hours: Monday-Friday 8:00~17:00
Ibusuki Yasaino oukoku Co.,Ltd