Food Education in Japan and Germany

Symposium by Freie Universität Berlin and Graduate School of East Asian Studies on December 6, 2016, in Japanese-German Center Berlin

‘ 417/2016 from Nov 28, 2016

Food education is the theme of a symposium being organized by Freie Universität Berlin, the Japanese-German Center Berlin (JDZB), and the Graduate School of East Asian Studies (GEAS) to be held on December 6, 2016, in Berlin-Dahlem. In two subject blocks and an open discussion session, the participants will examine the role of the state, society, families, and individuals in nutritional issues such as how individual consumer behavior can be influenced through nutrition education. They will address, for example, new eating habits, the problem of food waste, or nutritional education in rural areas. In the first keynote speech, Kimura Aya (University of Hawai-i at M-noa) will speak about feministic perspectives and food justice in Japan. The second keynote speech by Ines Heindl (European University of Flensburg) is about healthy eating for young people in Europe. The symposium is public, and admission is free. The conference language is English. RSVP by November 30  online.

Japan is the only OECD country to incorporate food and nutrition issues into a comprehensive law. In 2005, Japan’s Basic Law on Food Education came into force. The first basic plan became effective in 2006. The law seeks to support nutritional education and the preservation of "traditional Japanese food culture." These goals are to be implemented through cooperation between the state, municipal authorities, farmers, educators, and families.

In Germany too, efforts are being made toward comprehensive nutrition education. The German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture, for example, initiated the anti-food waste campaign "Too good for the trash bin" or the campaign "Get going" for healthy eating in child day care. The link between food, health, and nutrition is a topic present in the media, in everyday life, and in academic discourses of both countries.

This interdisciplinary symposium compares campaigns and the state of eating and eating habits in Japan and Germany. Scholars from different disciplines of both countries will discuss and analyze concepts, institutional contexts, successes, and potentials of nutrition education.


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