Sunday, October 15, 2006

Let the harvest begin...

Today was the first day of rice harvesting at our house. For anyone who is interested here is an outline of what happens....
First the "ladies" cut the rice in the corners of the fields to allow the rice harvester to be able to turn the corner.
Next the men and their machines arrive... The machine cuts the rice at the bottom and feeds it through some amazing invention that separates the rice from the stems, stores the rice in the tank and either cuts the stalks up or spits them out whole depending on whether you want to use the straw later for the garden etc.
The tanks are emptied into 30kg sacks and taken home to the big drier to dry overnight. This removes the outside husks and you are left with big sacks of brown rice. As the rice is needed it is then polished to produce white rice.
Of course in the past this whole process was all done by hand and took many weeks to complete. The whole community worked together to get all the rice harvested and then had big "parties" to celebrate the harvest. Along with the machines this side of things has disappeared along with a lot of the "community spirit". I guess there are disadvantages to having machines after all!
Mind you with machines it leaves a lot more time for sleeping after the harvest is completed!


  1. Hi, Jo. How are you?
    I have also done rice harvesting here in Azumino, three times.
    The last one was by hand which was very fun.
    Then I thought I should grow own rice some time when I got my field somewhere.

  2. Japanese technology aye? Amazing. Here in Tajikistan they still do it the hard way (well, with the wheat anyway).