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Integrated Environmental Studies Course

2018-06-14 【3/3】Report on On-site Research Training (ORT) at Higashi-shirakawa Village and Shirakawa Town, Gifu

2018 Integrated Environmental Studies course on-site research training (ORT) class was conducted in Higashi-Shirakawa village and Shirakawa Town, Gifu Prefecture.

June 2st-- Shirakawa Town

1.Lecture on organic farming at organic GOEN Farm

After breakfast, we had a lecture on organic farming at organic GOEN Farm by Mr. Akira Hattori (owner of GOEN Farm). The owner and his wife moved to Shirakawa-cho 23 years ago. They planted organic vegetables and sesame selling to Nagoya and Tokyo, and some export to UK. They use natural way of plantation without chemical fertilizer. They also did test to plant the vegetables and fruits in the interval area of tea plantation. They need to protect plantation from wild animals by electrical fences and buffer zones. The picture shows that we climbed the mountain to have a look at tea tree, mulberry, a pretty old tree -- symbol of this area (no one knows its age). Mr Akira Hattori and his wife are the front-right two persons.


2.Visit the complex "Yoi-Ichi-Mino-Shirakawa", which opened on April 21, 2018

According to Mr. Masaru Isaji, the Assistant Manager of the Complex, Shirakawa town is a typical mountainous area with the aging rate of about to reach 40%. Among them, the number of elderly people over 100 years old grows up. The complex was a regional revitalization plan which started with a composite base building and intended to be an activity base of agricultural products shipping site. He hopes that the elderly and women can be involved in.


3.Lecture on the Agriculture topic at Fuji Farm (pig farm), Kurokawa

After lunch, we visited the Fujii Farm, an organic pig farm owned by Mr. Takuo Fujii. The trade brand of their pork products is "Anshin-Ton" which literally means safe pork. Mr. Fujii started the organic model for his farm since 25 years ago (before that time he still use antibiotics and chemicals in his farm). His farm mainly raises pigs and sells to Tokyo via internet by his son's business. His story was so motivating and is a typical organic farmer's story which told us only who has the patience can do organic. In the picture, Mr. Fujii is the third person from the front-left.


4.Lecture on Cultural in Azuma-Za (Kabuki theather) at Kurokawa

We moved to the Azuma-Za where Mr. Hiroyoshi Kakamu is the manager or this traditional theatre. Kabuki is one of the traditional performing arts in Japan listed as an Instangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO, and was said to have been created more than 400 years ago by a woman called "Izumo no Okuni". Today, there are only around 200 groups that engage in preservation activities and 30 of those groups are found in Gifu Prefecture. Gifu Prefecture is therefore known as the most active Ji-Kabuki area in Japan. In the picture, Mr. Hiroyoshi Kakamu (fifth person from the front-left) guided all the professors and students how to act a simple pose in a Kabuki performance.


Azuma-Za is the last point we visited before returning to Nagoya. After the trip, students will select topics for research and present their findings in front of local residents and professors in December.