Driving positive impact through consumption.
Japan has precious ancient intelligence and cultural history. The country warmly welcomes your curiosity. Ever wonder how have your desire to visit and experience Japan impact the country?
When businesses capitalize on the popularity of Tokyo and Kyoto in the past decade, it also brings unprecedented negative impact to these tourist-swamped hotspots: local businesses being squeezed out by tourist-focused commerce, irresponsible real estate developments, inflation caused by the tourist-guesthouse rush, residential community's disturbance, pollutions... to name a few. "Kanko kogai" (tourism pollution) has become a hot topic especially in Kyoto in recent years.
TAKETOMBO and GOENNE works with local artisans to divert attention and revitalization effort to smaller, lesser-known rural towns; one artisan at a time, one town at a time. We want to raise awareness to the international community on social challenges brought by over-tourism and uneven distribution of resources in Japan. Peer through the candy-coated marketing and packaging of popularized towns, and you will see many humble historic craft towns seeking to sustain their craft legacy and to build resilience.
Why not sees the catastrophe as a point of restart. We will soon resume to regular shopping and global traveling.
Industrialization has trained us to consume, discard and consume more. We are now facing the environmental and socio-economical impact that our desire for cheap, mass-produced product has brought. This is the moment for us to assess the price-paid for labor exploitation and cost efficiency. Be aware of our current consumption behavior, learn the integrity, quality and life cycle of goods through forgotten slow-craft and artisanship. Be an educated consumer: understand the context of commodity, know the impact of your consumption to the local community and the environment. Respect quality goods that last. Make intelligent decisions.
Japan's international visitors dropped as much as 98% during COVID19. Regardless, Japan ranks No.1 as a destination travelers would want to visit after the pandemic. While we are still battling a pandemic and rebuilding a collapsed tourist industry, we should also evaluate our behaviour: Shall we returning to the same clustering and unsustainable practices or look deeper into what impact global travel and consumption brings? How can we diversify investment and support to reach the neglected regions? Be an educated culture traveler. Your choice of destination and activities can drive positive impact.
Additional reading: "Death of Regional Cities" here