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interview with CEO Ike Tokita:

Tokita Seed continuing to set itself apart

Last year, Japanese seed breeder Tokita opened their new improved research and development facility in Northern Italy. According to president and CEO Ike Tokita, the 95 year old family company will further strengthen it's international approach in the future.
With branches in the US, India, Italy and of course Japan, Tokita is growing it's way into the market everyday. "Though it is not very fast, we are expanding our services on a slow tempo with small steps", said Ike Tokita. "Everyday our team is working to achieve the best, but still in slow steps. We want to be sure that everything we do, is the right thing."
Aside from the seed breeders' research facilities in the US and India, Tokita recently expanded it's R&D-facility in Japan and Italy. "Nowadays we have three research facilities in Japan", said Ike Tokita. "Because it is such a long island, there is a big difference between the Northern and Southern Climate. That's why we have three research stations on the Island. One is based in the North, one in the South, and our main station is positioned in the middle of Japan. Hence we are able to select varieties more properly suited for the right climate."

CEO Ike Tokita at Fruit Logistica in Berlin this year
Tokita is the only Japanese seed company that obtained the Good Seed and Plant Practices (GSPP) certificate for hygiene in seed production and plant raising to prevent infection with pathogens. "We are very pleased with having the GSPP-certificate and really believe in the extra value that the certificate offers to our customers. It is a guarantee for hygiene that our customers appreciate. Since we have the certificate we have even  more customers and in the past some customers didn't sow the seed without having this guarantee for hygiene."
According to Ike Tokita, the global, but intimate market approach of Tokita Seed pays itself back every day. "We develop and select our seeds worldwide in different climates. So we are sure that we develop varieties for all climates and situations," he said.
The CEO states that his company will continue with the development of special, tasty varieties. "We will further strengthen the image that we have as being a special seed breeder. We will continuously breed new special and better varieties with more taste. Of course we like to achieve certain productivities within our varieties, but taste and crop quality will always be the most important properties for us. We will stay a small company that is trying to be different, because if we chase after the big ones, we will never catch up!"

For more information:
Tokita Seed
Ike Tokita

Publication date: 2/14/2013
Author: Boy de Nijs



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