Presentation at 2018 International Symposium on Food Safety Policy and Technology, Taipei, Taiwan

Masa Funabashi gave an invited talk and joined the final panel discussion at the 2018 International Symposium on Food Safety Policy and Technology held on October 11-12, in Taipei, Taiwan.

Title: The challenge and achievement of Synecoculture: Food safety and technology that promote the diversity of social-ecological systems and human-ecosystem health

Food safety entails diverse factors from social and ecological systems involved in food production. The meaning of “safety” is different according to different actors, and the time scale of sustainability, i.e. for consumers, producers, policymakers, next generation, and natural environment. Technological tailoring of these solutions could be highly diverse and require a novel strategy that requires the development of the next generation ICT.
In this talk, I will present the concept, challenge, and achievement of Synecoculture project that has been developed to overcome global agenda such as food security for the growing population and associated massive biodiversity loss, which is difficult to overcome with conventional monoculture-intensive methods of agriculture. 
Based on the field experiments in Japan and sub-Saharan Africa, biological analyses of products and double-blind, randomized controlled trials on humans, we derive essential factors that should be included in the new food safety strategy for increased human and ecosystem health, especially for Asian countries that are facing drastic changes in climate and demography. 
Design of technological supports that should enhance the development of such food production/distribution/safety framework in decentralized society is formalized as “Megadiversity Management Systems (MMS)” and developed under the collaboration of UniTwin UNESCO Complex Systems Digital Campus program. This system is designed to fill the gap between field sensing/monitoring and food quality and aims to provide bold technological support for policymaking that comprehensively promotes human and ecosystem health from field to fork.
Links between scientific facts, essential supportive technologies and political challenges will be addressed from the viewpoint that advocates the conversion to sustainable society during the next few decades, critically before the middle of this century. Particular focus will be put on how to make intelligent use of this planet’s genetic resources, and avoid 6th massive extinction of wildlife triggered by the inappropriate practice of conventional agriculture.