Workshop “What does school lunch mean to society?” at NPO Tsukaisute Jidai wo Kangaeru Kai and Anzen Kyokyu Center’s Organic Seminar Series (Norie Tamura, Senior Project Researcher, and Fumi Iwashima, Project Research Associate)

FEAST HQ Report, Seminar & Workshop, WG2

On November 10th, 2018, we organized a workshop titled “What does school lunch mean to society?” as part of Organic Seminar Series at Patagonia Kyoto hosted by Tsukaisute Jidai wo Kangaeru Kai (The Association for Ethical Waste Disposal Awareness) and its affiliated company limited, Anzennousan Kyokyu Center (Safe Produce Supply Center Ltd.) and co-hosted by RIHN and Working Committee for Shoku to Nou no Mirai Kaigi Kyoto (Food Policy Council Kyoto). Prof. Takayuki Dewa from Faculty of Letters, Ryukoku University started off the seminar with a lecture on the issues around and background of free school lunch services in Seoul, South Korea. This was meant to be a catalyst for …

FEAST Project at the World Social Science Forum 2018! (Steven R. McGreevy, Project Leader)

FEAST HQ Conference and Symposium, HQ News, WG1, WG2, WG3

From September 25th to 28th, many of us from FEAST HQ attended the World Social Science Forum 2018 in Fukuoka, held at the Fukuoka International Congress Center. Since RIHN was one of the consortium partners for the Forum, it was important for the institute to have a significant presence at the event. It was also a time to show the potential of the new research programs for integrated, cross-cutting discussions of relevant themes and concepts. We were surprised to learn that all three FEAST session proposals and the Program 3 session proposal were accepted. Indeed, RIHN’s fingerprints were all over the Forum program, with nearly 10 sessions in total. When …

Report on the 15th International Conference of the East-Asian Agricultural History in South Korea (Fumi Iwashima, Project Research Associate)

FEAST HQ Report, WG2

The 15th of International Conference of the East-Asian Agricultural History (hereinafter ICEAAH) was held at Seoul National University in the Republic of Korea from September 12th to 14th, 2018, of which I had a privilege to be part and present my research. ICEAAH is organized in order to comparatively look at agricultural production, rural communities, and agricultural/rural policies in East Asia and catalyze a broader and deeper understanding. Three East Asian countries of Japan, the Republic of Korea, and People’s Republic of China take turns to host conferences every one to two years. This round of ICEAAH happened to be comparatively small-scale with approximately twenty participants due to some circumstances. …

RIHN Open House 2018: Narrative, Taste, and Identity: What is your dish of 100 years? (Masahiro Terada, RIHN Visiting Associate Professor)

FEAST HQ Events, Report

Every mid-summer, the Research Institute for Humanity and Nature (RIHN) welcomes the public for the Open House event. This year’s RIHN Open House, which was held on the 27th of July, drew more than 900 visitors.  FEAST organized five event booths for the Open House: “Food tent of Bhutan,” a visual installation of fieldwork record in Bhutan; “Let’s go cycling to look for paddy field in Kyoto city,” an interactive experience of fieldwork using a go-pro camera; “What is the food which you cannot buy in the supermarket?,” a word cloud on white board; “Food Policy Council Game” at RIHN Game Café,” a simulation board game; and finally “What is …

Visiting an Organic Farm in Keihoku, Kyoto (Sittidaj Pongkijvorasin, RIHN Visiting Research Fellow/Chulalongkorn University)

FEAST HQ From the Field, Report

From June 15 to 16, FEAST project researcher (Mai Kobayashi) and I (visiting researcher from Chulalongkorn University) visited an organic farm located in Keihoku district in northern Kyoto. The farm we visited is named “Tagayashi-uta Farm,” which literally means “plowing song farm.” There, I was given a great opportunity to experience working on a small scale family farm in an up-land mountainous village of Japan. As a researcher interested in sustainable upland agriculture economies in Thailand, this visit was particularly significant as I was able to exchange knowledge based on each other’s experiences, and compare the different challenges and strategies seen between Japan and Thailand. Nami and Naoya, the farm …

Kyoto Organic Action: impressions of the project after the "Peasants’ revolution" gathering (Guilherme Raj, Wageningen University)

FEAST HQ Report, WG3

“Kyoto Organic Action” (KOA) was created in the beginning of 2017 during a gathering of organic producers in the Nantan area, northwest of Kyoto City. Kentaro Suzuki, owner of the “369 local & organic yaoya” veggie delivery company, organized the event aiming to boost the dynamics and interactions between farmers, distributors and vendors – something that he didn’t see happening when he moved in to Nantan. During the event, the idea of sharing the transportation costs and logistic system of organic products with buyers in Kyoto City led to what is, today, called “Kyoto Organic Action” (KOA): an organization aimed to decrease the distribution costs of agriculture goods produced by …

New research takes off with bees (Maximilian Spiegelberg, Project Researcher)

FEAST HQ Report, WG3

In summer the whir of the cicada dominates the Japanese soundscape. To me and my colleagues Christoph Rupprecht (FEAST Project Researcher), Rika Shinkai and Kan Seicyou (RIHN Visiting Researchers) came this summer additionally also the buzz of the bees. With the globally recognized importance of bees as pollinators in the agricultural production (IPBES 2017)bees play their part when talking about transitioning to agroecology, and regional food systems. However, the number of managed bees and professional beekeepers has decreased also in Japan over the past years due to pests, landscape and agricultural changes, insecticide and pesticide use, as well as some damages to the bee colonies by wild-life and predators  (bee-happy.jp; …