Flat-rate services take hold
Monthly toy deliveries and bottomless coffees are just some of the services popping up that use flat-rate fees. And though many of these ideas are not terribly profitable yet, they carry great potential to help small businesses take off.
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Disappearing rice brands
Government changes could mean the end to around 300 region-specific brands of rice that have been developed over decades. But some farmers are working on ways to preserve many of these varieties while keeping them profitable.
Appliances for singles
Smaller refrigerators...with wine cellars on top? The market for appliances for those living alone is growing not just because of the abundant number of singles in Japan, but also in large part to novel, compact twists to everyday items.
Shedding light on the dark web
Guns, drugs, computer viruses and corporate secrets can all be found on secret sites online. But there are those out there working to protect legitimate businesses prone to attacks and libel.
Anyone can become a professional farmer
What's a declining agriculture industry to do to bring in new farmers? A venture company called Seak is using technology and innovative selling methods to make farming exciting, and to invite a new generation onto Japan's fields.
A specialized app for specialized shoppers
There is a weakness in online shopping -- specific, nuanced desires tend to get lost in the noise of more popular trends. Now an app is here to link smaller shops with more demanding shoppers, and to bring them to the actual stores.
Opening up the global canned coffee market
Canned coffee is everywhere in Japan, but it is still a novel concept in the U.S. -- for now. American beverage experts from Coca-Cola are learning just how Japan has succeeded in selling bottled coffee, and how innovations continue to be made.