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  • QA 183
    Question:
    What rules and norms apply to the import of organic coffee into Japan?
    Background:
    As exporters of roasted, non-decaffeinated organic coffee we are interested to know what regulations and norms we need to satisfy for our product to be imported into Japan?
    Asked by:
    Exporter - Peru
    Answer:

    Imports of organic produce, including coffee, into Japan must comply with the Japan Agricultural Standard or JAS. This regulates the production and labelling of organic food items produced in Japan. Although coffee is not grown there, JAS nevertheless covers coffee and tea under 'organic agricultural production'. *

    JAS is enacted by the Ministry of Agriculture. Only Ministry-accredited certifying bodies may issue JAS organic certification for coffee to be imported into Japan. Certifying bodies in coffee producing countries may also apply for accreditation under JAS and, subject to meeting the JAS standard for their products, suppliers of organic coffee (and tea) may display the JAS mark (which is the single organic label for the entire Japanese market). For more information on JAS visit www.maff.go.jp .

    We are separately emailing you details of the different avenues open to exporters of organic products but we believe the most obvious approach would be to deal with a certified Japanese importer: i.e. someone who is certified by a Registered Certifying Organization in Japan and therefore is conversant with all applicable regulations and procedures. **

    An accredited certifying body in Peru would then have to provide the necessary certification - one such body is Biolatina in Lima - see www.biolatina.com.pe . However we expect there to be a number of such certifying bodies in Peru given the country's substantial exports of organic coffee.

    * Coffee imports into Japan are also subject to Pesticide Residues Regulations - for more on this visit http://Coffee.ajca.or.jp/English/  This is the website of the All Japan Coffee Association - AJCA.

    ** Most Japanese coffee roasters and distributors conduct business through the intermediary of importers and would be unlikely to respond to direct approaches - for names/addresses we suggest to contact AJCA.

    Posted 26 February 2008

    Related chapter(s):
    Related Q & A:
    Q&A 028, 070