The town originating the world's shrimp farming technology fell into critical conditions.
Aio town in Yamaguchi City, not so well known, has a name hard to read even by Japanese people. It is the where shrimp farming methods originated, adopted around the world, including techniques used for the world-famous Black Tiger prawn. Although this town continues to cultivate luxury tiger prawns, the local industry has declined, with a share taken by other late-growing localities, and imported prawns. We received consultation from Yamaguchi City in 2016, where we began this project focusing on local activities. We, therefore, decided to utilize prawn aquaculture as a starting point for regional revitalization.
A town remembered and known for its high quality prawns.
Even though nearly 100 years have passed since the birth of prawn aquaculture, there were no such prawn cooperative associations. However, the council was established in 2016 in a timely manner―a system for aquaculture companies to collaborate for the first time. Tachikawa took part as a guest speaker for their first meeting, which drew to establishing "Aioebi" together with Yamaguchi City for two years. We designed a place for dialogue between dealers while organizing regional issues for this location.
1. Have name of the city remembered by the brand name “Aioebi”.
2. Create a regional industry as a brand of cultured prawns.
3. Develop local gourmets where local inns and shops can easily participate.
4. Revive summer shrimp farming and create local industries.
5. Aim for certification authentication of sustainable aquaculture.
6. To not only be known as the birthplace of aquaculture technology, but also uncover from the history the possibility of being the origin of shrimp farming.
7. Efforts will be made to revive natural shrimp farming, including the revetment environment.
8. Sponsor prawns as lunch for the local children.
The eight items above propose as strategies, where each project is underway as a working group, under the facilitation of Tachikawa.
Under such circumstances, the essential branding tools such as the packaging of live prawns for gifts, POP, carps, leaflets are complete. Up until now, each aquaculture company used a separate box. However, to make use of the merit of scale, we proposed a box designed to be compatible with various occasions, by merely changing the sleeve. The packaging is packed full of live prawns. To keep the prawns alive, we lined the box with sawdust. The illustrations express the luxuriousness of Japanese packaging.
Regional revitalization by recognition of its name “Aioebi.”
2018. Two years have passed, and in parallel with the regional change and success, gradual recognition as a brand has plummeted, where we hear repeaters have increased. It is now enjoyed by people all over the country as a popular “Furusato Nozei.” (A platform for taxpayers who donate to local municipalities to receive local goods throughout the year.)
Possibilities have arisen for summer prawn aquaculture from the forum of the council, where trial productions of local gourmets have begun. The "Ebi Harvest World Championship," a regional festival, is now renamed as "AIOEBI Harvest World Championship," opening opportunities to expose AIOEBI from within Japan, to abroad. To change a region is hard work, and while we feel it is still a long way to establish a well-known brand. However, it is obvious the people in the area gradually see a brighter future.
Aio town, Japan
NOSIGNER (Eisuke Tachikawa)
NOSIGNER (Eisuke Tachikawa, Ryota Mizusako)
NOSIGNER (Ryota Mizusako)