Shinmai, an official term designated by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries in the Japanese Agricultural Standard (JAS) system, is the rice harvested, processed and packaged for sale in the current year, up until December 31.

Rice from the previous calendar year is designated as komai, old rice; still older rice is called kokomai (old old rice), kokokomai (old old old rice) and so on with the number of ko (meaning old) corresponding to the rice’s age in years.

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