I began working as the 3rd employee at Dainichi after I graduated from junior high school. Since my father was already in the Koi business, I had always imagined running my own business someday. Dainichi was virtually unknown at the time, but now they have become a brand known to everyone. I was fortunate to have been a part of the growth of Dainichi; all the valuable experiences I gained there are important to me and are a big asset.
Back then, there were only a few varieties of Nishikigoi. Nice colors and patterns were enough to be considered good. But nowadays, Koi need to be well-shaped, well-rounded, and big-sized, not only colorful and pretty. I believe Dainichi created the basis for that type of Koi. The former generations of Dainichi taught me many things: how to distinguish and produce Koi, nature of Koi, and how to look for different breeding methods and directionality for each Koi based on their personalities. Such valuable know-how is strongly rooted in my Nishikigoi.
I started my company in 1970. In 1974, my oldest son, Toshihiro started helping my Nishikigoi business, and in 2000, my oldest daughter, Keiko, started doing so too. They always enjoyed being with Koi and always came to the field ponds to help me, so as may be expected of them, they are familiar with the handling of Koi. My children used to help me just because they wanted to touch the Koi, but now they have become a Koishi with the enthusiasm “to produce Koi that will win the overall champion at a Koi show.”
We currently employ 2 young people. They both began working for me after having graduated from vocational schools. I don’t know if they want to become breeders or if they want to open a shop and go into sales in the future. However, in the Koi business, production is the fundamentals and is very important, so they will, one day, be able to apply what they are experiencing now.
In this business, it takes 10 to 20 million yen (approx. USD90, 000 to 180,000) just to build one house. So when I decided to leave Dainichi and become an independent breeder, I had to really prepare myself. In my ponds, I produce 10 different varieties of Koi. I mainly breed Gosanke (Kohaku, Showa Sanshoku, and Taisho Sanshoku (Sanke)), but also have Ginrin Kohaku, Chagoi, Shiro Utsuri, Kujaku, Ogon, Asagi, and Kinmatsuba. I want to produce a splendid Koi that, at a glance, will be etched on everybody’s mind. I just want people to be totally impressed and say “wow, Nishikigoi are a true beauty!” For example, I don’t want to make just any ordinary beni; I want it to be well-stretched and beautiful. And besides color, body conformation and size are also important. Big Koi are the mainstream now, and those that win grand champions at Koi shows are fairly big in size. But mine don’t have to be necessarily big. I will produce well-balanced Koi that inherit glamour and beauty, that will stun the others and that will inspire those who see them. My wish is to compete in a Koi show with such high-quality Koi and to win the overall champion.
Quality is greatly affected by genealogy, and genealogy is determined by the breeding of oyagoi. Producing a high-quality Koi is a chance to show the breeder’s skills. Of course, quality may change depending on how you raise them. To improve the quality of Koi, Koi lovers need to create the optimum environment, such as feeding procedures and health control, for each Koi. Koi lose their appetite when water deteriorates. The important thing is to maintain an environment in which Koi always have good appetite.