Updated: Jan 25
In August 1549 (471 years ago), a party of Portuguese missionaries brought wine to Japan. Finally, the wine culture is beginning to take root in Japan. Japan is one of the wine production country with the severest meteorological conditions in the world. Can you believe that some areas can get over 300mm precipitation in one night of rainy season? Do you think the Japanese are stupid to grow wine grapes in such a area? The reason the Japanese continue to make wine in such an unsuitable environment is the greatness of fascinating wine culture.
Our predecessors have developed cultivation techniques, finding ways to contend with the climate at times. Some growers have introduced rain-cut tunnels in Japanese bed trellis to protect the fruit zone from rain for disease control. Furthermore, the grape guard was developed for VSP trellis. Tyvek sheeting can dramatically reduce the amount of rainwater flowing into the soil. Tyvek sheeting is often used in Japanese citrus cultivation, but it has not yet been used in viticulture. Also, the reflection by these sheets helps to compensate for the lack of sunlight in Japan, where is often cloudy. We must follow and continue to move forward creating new technologies.
Being underprivileged by the environment means that we are given the pleasure of overcoming problems with technological improvements. It's very exciting to try something big. And what we need for this seemingly reckless challenge is science! Our challenges are very difficult. After all, we are dealing with is nature. Nevertheless, we never stop trying.