Satoshi Toi

For Satoshi Toi's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Farmers see growth potential for 'functional' vegetables

Feb 19, 2015

Farmers see growth potential for 'functional' vegetables

Health-conscious consumers are driving demand for strains of vegetables with enhanced nutritional qualities, and growers are eager to comply. So-called “functional vegetables” can command higher prices than ordinary strains, and farmers are trying to increase the range of these foods they offer. Dole Japan ...

Custom shoe shops put customers in charge of footwear design

Feb 18, 2015

Custom shoe shops put customers in charge of footwear design

Great news for “affishoenados.” Picky shoe shoppers can now design their own dream footwear using services that let them choose colors and materials. Kibera, which operates outlets mainly in Tokyo, sells women’s shoes for ¥9,900 plus tax which are fully customizable for shape and ...

Companies using cafeterias to boost performance, camaraderie

Jan 2, 2015

Companies using cafeterias to boost performance, camaraderie

From offering free lunches as performance incentives to promoting exchanges across hierarchical lines, companies are starting to see their cafeterias as more than just a place where employees can grab a meal. Yahoo Japan Corp. introduced in May a unique system in which its ...

Automobile wraps put new spin on paint jobs

Nov 28, 2014

Automobile wraps put new spin on paint jobs

Car owners are looking to color wrapping to breathe new excitement into their rides. One of them is a 55-year-old executive at a Tokyo real estate company. He hired YMG1 Co. in May to change the colors of his three imported cars. His silver ...

Food industry hungrier to recycle its waste

Oct 31, 2014

Food industry hungrier to recycle its waste

Food companies are increasingly adopting programs to recycle waste leftover from the production process. Starbucks Coffee Japan Ltd. launched a “food recycle loop” system in March to recycle its coffee grounds into compost to grow vegetables and feed cows. The vegetables grown and milk ...

Golf turns to kids, other sports to lure younger players

Oct 6, 2014

Golf turns to kids, other sports to lure younger players

Japan’s golf industry, which is still largely dependent on seniors and corporate outings, is changing in the face of the aging population and stiffer competition from other leisure activities. To attract younger players, some golf clubs are opening schools for children or adding facilities ...

When kids see red over eating greens

Jun 13, 2014

When kids see red over eating greens

How do you get children to eat more vegetables? The Japan Vegetable Sommelier Association organized courses in Tokyo recently for youngsters aged 5 to 9 in which trained chefs tried to help them overcome their yuck instinct. It seemed to work. “I’m becoming interested ...

LED bulbs develop color customizing options

Jun 2, 2014

LED bulbs develop color customizing options

Light-emitting-diode bulbs are becoming a new tool for customizing home or office lighting environments. In November last year, Naomi Watanabe, who teaches at an elementary school in the evenings, installed a Panasonic Corp. LED ceiling light system in her classroom at a private home ...