Crown Princess Masako has expressed her hope to inherit the Imperial tradition of sericulture from Empress Michiko, Imperial Household Agency sources said Thursday.

Crown Prince Naruhito, Crown Princess Masako and Princess Aiko — their only child — are set to visit the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on Sunday and view a sericulture facility at the palace with the Imperial couple, the sources said.

According to the sources, an aide to Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako met with the Empress late last month at the Imperial Palace and informed her of the Crown Princess’ hope to succeed in the sericulture tradition.

The Empress explained how silkworms are being raised to the aide, who then viewed the sericulture facility at the Imperial Palace, the sources said.

The Imperial tradition of sericulture was initiated by Empress Shoken, the wife of Emperor Mutsuhito who reigned between 1867 and 1912 and was posthumously called Emperor Meiji. The tradition has since been continued by later empresses.

Since earlier this month, the Empress has been carrying out her last activities in sericulture, ahead of Emperor Akihito’s abdication on April 30 next year.

In May 2019, silkworms at the Imperial Palace will be taken care of by Imperial Household Agency officials because a series of events related to the Crown Prince’s ascent to the throne will keep the Imperial family busy.