Japan’s population, along with the vitality of its rural areas, are in decline. Farmers and brewers are aging out, often with no one to follow in their footsteps. Against this bleak backdrop, who are the young innovators injecting new life into ancient traditions? In the world of sake, a new generation of young heirs is experimenting with techniques borrowed from French winemaking and reintroducing a lost regionality to the beverage by reviving local heirloom grains. They’re also inspiring a crop of international sake brewers. We’ll also hear about how rural farmers and food producers, by collaborating with experts in agriculture and other fields, have successfully launched a profusion of value-added products, giving their local culture and economies a new lease on life.
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