Featured in Tokachi Mainichi Newspaper

An article about the "Daikazoku Project" was published in Tokachi Mainichi Newspaper on September 26, 2021.

This young man is also interviewed in the "Reviews" section of Big Family Project.

When he first came to our home, he was so weak that he couldn't make eye contact or speak loudly.

However now he is full of energy and is able to say thank you to those around him as you can see in the interview.

Click here to read an interview with him.

Thanks to the Corona Disaster,
Fascinated by Agriculture

In Memuro, Hokkaido

A young man decides to farm in Hokkaido, as if guided by the corona disaster.

Ryo Tsukamoto, a university student from Osaka Prefecture, experienced agriculture in the town of Memuro and other areas this summer.
'I want to pursue a career in agriculture in Hokkaido, which taught me the happiness of living in the great outdoors.'

Online classes make him often stay home all day.

Mr. Tsukamoto is a senior at Osaka University of Economics and Law. The coronavirus has kept online classes open for over a year, and he gets used to a life of never leaving the house gradually... It is then that he meets Mr. Saito Tamotsu who is the chief director of Mottainai Zero Association.

Mr. Saito moved to Niseko from Osaka two years ago after running a travel agency that handled ski tours in Europe. While he comes to understand that there is a large outflow of young people in rural area, he also learns about the current state of agriculture, which is undergoing a shift to IT.

‘AI will eliminate more and more urban office jobs. Agriculture is the job for young people.’ He considers that urban and rural human resources are not a mismatch, and he makes it into wifework after getting out of the travel business.

‘I was taught happiness.’

‘I wanted to try something new.’ says Mr. Tsukamoto, working hard on the farm with Mr. Saito since August. This september he experiences dairy and field crops in Otomo Farm and Takano Farm. 'The farmers welcomed me, a person with no experience, and I was able to rediscover the warmth of people. I am grateful for the encounters that would not have been possible without Corona,' says Mr. Tsukamoto. He intends to return to Hokkaido after graduating from university.

Meanwhile, Mr.Saito, who moved to Hokkaido and feels the loneliness of living alone, launched the "Big Family Project." This is to make a place where strangers who have good chemistry can live together and support each other like a family. He plans to establish 10 base houses in the country by 2025. Following Kutchan Town, projects are underway in Okinawa and Kagawa prefectures. 'For those who feel uncomfortable in the city, i would like to offer a way of life in which people can move from one house to another seasonally, enjoying skiing and diving, for example, and helping out with farming.' says Mr. Saito.

Ryuji Takano of Takano Farm, which hosted Mr. Tsukamoto, said, "I would be happy if farming can become a place for people who feel suffocated in the city. For farmers, it will also help alleviate labor shortages. "

(Kyota NIWA)