Japan food exports hit annual record

The value of Japan's food exports hit a record last year, reaching that mark by the end of November. The figure was buoyed by a weak yen and recovering demand in the global restaurant industry.

The government says shipments of agricultural, forestry and fishery products from January to November were just over 1.2 trillion yen, or about 9.3 billion dollars. In yen terms, they were up over 15 percent from the same period a year earlier.

Seafood exports stood out. Sales of scallops surged by 47 percent. Those of yellowtail rose almost 40 percent.

Alcoholic drinks were also strong. Shipments of whiskey and sake were up by about 21 percent.

The government has said it aims to export two trillion yen, or about 15 billion dollars a year in the overall category by 2025. It now says it wants to reach that target earlier.