It has always seemed to me that while harping about Japanese trade restrictions, American farmers and policy-makers have failed to understand Japanese consumers’ very real concern with food safety. Even characters in Japanese fiction show an awareness of the dangers of pesticides and preservatives. In the story “Pregnancy Diary” by Yoko Ogawa, a woman tries to destroy her sister’s unborn baby by feeding her jam made from American grapefruits. She gets this idea after learning that imported fruit is treated with the highly carcinogenic antifungal agent P.W.H., which is known to be harmful to human chromosomes.
Perhaps American agriculturists should do less lobbying and more reading.