Co-designing Agri-food Eco-Branding Tools for Supporting Sustainable Regions
About This Group

WG4 explores tools— food labeling, corporate-social responsibility, and carbon valuation— for integrating ecologically sound production practices with unique market support structures to revitalize rural communities in Japan. Indicator analysis and development, local agro-economic modeling, and marketing surveys will be used toward the creation of a regional ecological food label and model case site in Kameoka City, Kyoto.

Main Members
Akira Shibata
Professor of Ritsumeikan University
Tamura was born in Nishinomiya City of Hyogo prefecture. She has taken her current post as Senior Project Resaercher in 2016 following her post at a private thinktank. Her resaerch interests are in natural resource management, the commons, human resource and policy development in primary industries ranging from agriculture, forestry to fisheries, with a particular focus placed on support mechanisms in rural communities in Japan. Tamura recieved her PhD. from Kyoto University in 2007.
Shigeto Sudo
Principal researcher of Institute for Agro-Environmental Science, NARO (NIAES)

My works are focusing on atmospheric and agronomic studies to reduce environmental risk including global warming, ozone depletion and hydrological problems.
One of my major progress in atmospheric sciences are development of new analytical methods of atmospheric trace gases by gas chromatography.
I also emphasize importance to integrate both scientific and socioeconomic solutions on environmental issues.

Ayaka Kishimoto-Mo
Principal researcher of Institute for Agro-Environmental Science, NARO (NIAES)

Ayaka Kishimoto-Mo is a soil ecologist (Gifu University Ph.D. 1998) and principal researcher at NIAES. Currently doing research on estimating GHGs emissions and mitigation potential of cultivated soils at the country scale of Japan, especially concerning (1) Estimating N2O emission from cultivated soils at the country scale using empirical model combined with carbon process model, (2) Standardization chamber methods for estimating GHGs emissions in cultivated soils, and (3) Database for GHGs emission based on chamber methods in Japan.

Yasuhito Shirato
Unit head of Soil Biogeochemistry and Modeling Unit, Division of Climate Change, Institute for Agro-Environmental Science, NARO (NIAES)
Soil carbon sequestration is win-win strategy for food security and climate change mitigation. My work is modeling soil carbon for estimating soil carbon sequestration potential.
Yusuke Tanabiki
Assistant Professor of Rikkyo University
My research is focusing on the relationship between social, economic conditions and values. My recent research examines consumer's evaluations on the eco-branding of agricultural products.
Takeshi Osawa
Senior researcher of Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences, NARO
I am interested in a land use policy/management plan for sustainabie agriculture. My current research is focused on a types of agricultural land use including crop type,land consolidation and abandonment.
Sheng Zhou
Senior Researcher (Group leader) of Shanghai Academy of Agricultural Sciences
Dr. Zhou is a senior researcher in Shanghai Academy of Agricultural Sciences, who focuses on greenhouse gas mitigation in agricultural sector, agricultural wastewater treatment and agro-waste recycling.
Jia Ma
Associate Researcher of Shanghai Academy of Agricultural Sciences
Dr. Ma is the vice secretary of Shanghai Land society. Her main research fields are land resource economics and urban agricultural economic management.
Publications and outputs

Effect of dolomite and biochar addition on N2O and CO2 emissions from acidic tea field soil

A paper entitled “Effect of dolomite and biochar addition on N2O and CO2 emissions from acidic tea field soil” by Dr. Shigeto Sudo (Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences, National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NIAES)) and Prof. Akira Shibata (OIC Research Organization, Ritsumeikan University), Chairs of WG4, was published on PLOS ONE. Abstract: A laboratory study was condu...

Trade-off relationship between modern agriculture and biodiversity: Heavy consolidation work has a long-term negative impact on plant species diversity

Highlights: • Land consolidation is one of the major land-use changes in Japanese agricultural systems. • We examined the relationship between the occurrences of farmland consolidation and threatened plant species across Japan at the prefecture scale. • Results show that areas containing records of threatened plant species had rarely experienced consolidation. • We concluded that consolidated...

Straw biochar hastens organic matter degradation and produces nutrient-rich compost

Highlights: • Straw biochar improved water-soluble nutrient ions contents during composting. • Straw biochar enhanced the degradation of organic matter and maturity. • The product with biochar addition became mature after composting for 42 days. • A final concentration of 10–15% straw biochar was optimal. Authors: Jining Zhang, Guifa Chen, Huifeng Sun, Sheng Zhou*, Guoyan Zou Journal:...

Contribution of soil moisture to seasonal and annual variations of soil CO2 efflux in a humid cool-temperate oak-birch forest in central Japan

Abstract: To quantify the contribution of soil moisture to seasonal and annual variations in soil CO2 efflux in a cool-humid deciduous broadleaf forest, we measured soil CO2 efflux during the snow-free seasons of 2005–2008 using an automated chamber technique. This worked much better than manual chambers employing the same steady-state through-flow method. Soil CO2 efflux (g C m−2 perio...

Deviations between observed and RothC-simulated Δ14C values despite improved IOM initialization

Summary: The 14C contents and the carbon (C) pool sizes for Rothamsted Carbon (RothC) model pools and soil fractions determined by physical separation and subsequent chemical oxidation were directly compared for an agricultural topsoil (Dystric Cambisol) from a long-term experimental field in central Japan. The RothC model was run from 1975 to 2009 and the C concentration and Δ14C value of eac...

A Rural Revitalization Scheme in Japan Utilizing Biochar and Eco-Branding: The Carbon Minus Project, Kameoka City

Abstract: Like rural areas in many countries, Japanese rural society is experiencing decline in all spheres (depopulation, aging, lack of economic opportunity, and so on). Uncertainty in the future viability of agricultural livelihoods coupled with the collapse of the forestry sector has decreased the ecological resilience of the Japanese countryside, increasing overgrown forests, habitat and b...