Group A

In addition to its ongoing dedication to its customers, Aiya is dedicated to both its local community and the world community as a whole. Since 2001, the Aiya team in Japan has been sending its employee volunteers to South East Asia to directly help plant Mangrove trees and replenish the forests in the region (read more about Aiya's social responsibility here).

Biennially, Aiya employees and a select group of Nishio farmers take two weeks from their hectic work schedule to volunteer with members of the respective countries’ local community to plant Mangroves. 2015 marks the 8th event, planting a total of 17,700 trees in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, bringing Aiya’s lifetime total to over 72,000 trees! Below is a list of previous trips by Aiya to plant mangrove trees and Mahogany plants:

  • 2001 Philippines: 40 people, 6,300 Mangroves
  • 2003 Thailand: 40 people, 12,300 Mangroves
  • 2005 Indonesia: 60 people, 4,200 Mahoganies
  • 2007 Thailand: 60 people, 13,000 Mangroves
  • 2009 Malaysia: 50 people, 5,000 Mangroves
  • 2011 Indonesia: 36 people, 6,000 Mangroves
  • 2013 Philippines: 35 people, 7,800 Mangroves

This year, the replantation efforts were conducted in Can Gio, approximately 60 km south of Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam- a beautiful place where lush mangrove trees thrive. There was a time when – due to defoliants that spread during the Vietnam War – the mangrove forests were almost entirely destroyed. However, thanks to the hard work and desire for restoration by the Vietnam government and inhabitants of the area, the beautiful mangroves have been mostly recovered.

In recent years, however, construction of roads and bridges to spur tourism is once again putting these mangrove trees in danger. In an effort to help preserve these mangroves and allow them to flourish once again, two teams from Aiya Japan flew to Vietnam to contribute to the planting efforts. The first team went from October 1-5, and the second team went from October 15-19.  In total, 38 members from Aiya helped plant a total of 17,700 trees over the course of 10 days.

Why mangroves? We believe that it is critical to replenish and preserve these forests because they are currently in great danger of deforestation. Most of the rainforests were already lost in the mid-to-late 19th century, resulting in extinction of many species of birds, insects, and flora. These trees also protect the coastlines from erosion, storm surges and tsunamis.  Due to their massive roots, they are efficient at dissipating wave energy. Thus, it is important to continue these efforts to help preserve our environment, not only for environmental conservation, but also for deepening our bonds and relationships with people around the world. We all live on the same Earth and use the same resources; it’s time we give back to the world that gives us all so much. We are looking forward to volunteering again in 2017!

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