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Recipe for success, stranded Japanese-Italian couple found their life in Australia

Megumi Ikawa, a Japanese chef based in Ballan in Victoria, started a new food business with her Italian partner. Source: Megumi Ikawa

"We didn't want to give up and go home because of the pandemic".

Bentowise Megumi Ikawa Japanese bento victoria
Megumi Ikawa

Ms Megumi Ikawa, a Japanese chef who came to Australia five years ago, lost her job and prospect for permanent residency due to the coronavirus pandemic.

However for Ms Ikawa and her Italian partner, who have already spent five years and thirty thousand dollars in total to stay in Australia permanently,  leaving Australia was not an option.

They live in Balla, Victoria.  After Ms Ikawa moved to the rural region, she noticed that there is no food-delivery service like Uber and the locals have few options in terms of enjoying international, non-Australian food.

Ms Ikawa and her partner decided to withdraw the rest of their savings, about 7,000 dollars, and start a new Japanese bento (meal-box) delivery service in the area.

The business took off early August and has been successful.

In the audio, Ms Ikawa tells us about why they decided to stay in Australia and how the preparation for the new business went.  Ms Ikawa said that the secret of success is the warm support they received from the local community in Balla.


Bentowise Megumi Ikawa Japanese bento victoria
Megumi Ikawa

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