Japan Focus: Asahi’s billion-dollar bonds, exports of Fukushima-affected foods, meat-alternative developments and more

By Hui Ling Dang

- Last updated on GMT

Asahi’s new green bonds, restrictions lifted for Fukushima food exports, latest developments in the meat-alternative industry, and more feature in this edition of Japan Focus. ©Getty Images
Asahi’s new green bonds, restrictions lifted for Fukushima food exports, latest developments in the meat-alternative industry, and more feature in this edition of Japan Focus. ©Getty Images

Related tags Japan Asahi Meat alternatives RTD coffee Nestlé Suntory

Asahi’s new green bonds, restrictions lifted for Fukushima food exports, latest developments in the meat-alternative industry, and more feature in this edition of Japan Focus.

Billion-dollar bonds: Asahi Japan taps rising local sustainability trend to diversify new project financing

Brewery giant Asahi Japan recently released a new round of green bonds valued in the billions in local currency, tapping on burgeoning local sustainability trends to diversify its financing methods and achieve its environmental commitments

Asahi Japan lays claim to being the first food and beverage firm in the country to ever issue green bonds, with its first round of such bonds issued for a five-year period back in October 2020 for a total raised amount of JPY10bn (US$73.3mn).

This year, the firm issued a fresh round of green bonds totalled at JPY25bn (US$183.2mn), more than double that of the initial round and also set to mature in five years.

Caffeine culture: Nestle, Suntory among coffee brands highlighting localisation and RTD innovation as key drivers

Coffee consumers in the Asia-Pacific region are increasingly making purchasing decisions that are driven by localisation and ready-to-drink (RTD) format innovation, according to industry heavyweights such as Nestle, Suntory and Movenpick.

In this edition of the FNA Deep Dive, we spoke to several of the biggest coffee brands as well as industry-leading trailblazers in the region, in order take a closer look at the most significant trends driving the growth of this longstanding beverage sector.

No clean slate…yet: Japan lifts restrictions on more Fukushima-affected foods but boar meat poses problem

Japan has lifted the restrictions for shipment and export of several food items that have been in place since the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, but testing on one item in particular – wild boar meat – has dashed hopes of a clean slate.

Over the years, Japan has been exhausting many avenues to get its food exports back on track, hindered by foreign market fears of importing radioactive products. Its rigorous self-imposed testing has led to much progress being achieved. From 55 countries and regions that introduced import bans or controls on Japanese foods, over 40 have lifted these measures as of mid-2022.

‘The race is on’: Is Japan’s commitment to cultivated meat another sign Europe is lagging?

As Japan announces plans to develop a market for cellular foods, stakeholders in Europe deliberate over its competitiveness in the global race to develop cultivated meat.

As reported by the Japan Economic Newspaper, Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said, “We will develop an environment to create a new market, such as efforts to ensure safety and development of labelling rules, and foster a food tech business originating in Japan. Food tech, including cellular foods, is an important technology from the perspective of realising a sustainable food supply.​”

Japan foodtech firm DAIZ outlines ambitions to extend global reach for meat alternatives

Japanese food tech company DAIZ is accelerating efforts to broaden its portfolio of meat-alternative applications, which have already been adopted by a number of high-profile domestic players.

The firm was speaking following the announcement of a partnership with Roquette, which seeks to combine the latter’s experience in the research and production of plant-based ingredients with DAIZ’s capabilities in meat-alternative applications.

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