Despite living in Japan since Commodore Perry and his Black Ships, I didn’t know that the Japanese government set the price of imported wheat. And if they are raising the price because prices rose on the Chicago futures market, then why the need for the government to set the price, anyway?

The government will raise prices of imported wheat to flour millers by an average of 2 percent in October, the third straight increase since last year, boosting costs for companies such as Nisshin Seifun Group Inc.

Foreign wheat for sale by the government to domestic millers will rise to ¥57,720 a metric ton on average in October from the current level of ¥56,710, the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry said Wednesday in a statement. Japan depends on imports for almost 90 percent of its wheat, making it Asia’s largest buyer after Indonesia.

via Price of wheat to jump 2% | The Japan Times Online.