fruit grower (Tokunoshima, Kagoshima Prefecture) Yuya Futori
The 26-year-old Futori grows mangoes on Tokunoshima, one of the islands in the Amami Oshima islands. A graduate of the Kagoshima Prefectural College of Agriculture where he studied mango cultivation, he returned to his native island to start a mango orchard. Convinced that he can produce a better mango than those grown in Miyazaki or other parts of Japan, he has been working for five years to perfect his mangoes and has succeeded in producing a fruit with a very high sugar content.
Futori claims that “not too many people in Japan know what a really good mango tastes like. I want more people to enjoy the delicious mangoes that I grow.” A member of the Tokunoshima Young Farmers Club, Futori wants to change the island’s agriculture. At Happo-en, his mangoes are used to make a mango-flavored iced confection.