Japan's food exports hit record high in Jan.-Jun.

NHK -- Aug 04
Japan's food exports soared in the first half of the year as the economies of trading partners like the US and China continued to recover. The export figure for the January-to-June period hit a record high.

People familiar with the data say the total value of agriculture, forestry, and fishery products sold overseas was over 577 billion yen, or nearly 5.3 billion dollars.

That is 31.6 percent higher in yen terms from a year earlier. The figures include items sold on the Internet.

Demand has been rising in China and the US as economic activity returns, despite infections still spreading around the world.

The people with knowledge of the matter say businesses are exporting more food items to be consumed at home, as people refrain from eating out.

Shipments of alcoholic drinks, such as whisky and sake, jumped by 83 percent. Beef exports were up 119 percent. Those of scallops were up 74 percent.

Hong Kong was the top export destination, with a value of over 940 million dollars. China was a close second, followed by the US and Taiwan.