Though it is by no means over yet, Slow Food international vice-president Giacomo Mojoli’s fact-finding mission in Japan has already proved to be a huge success. .
Japan is the country in which Slow Food is growing fastest, and where many institutions and local authorities are keen to collaborate constructively with the movement.
On January 7, Mojoli was invited by the authorities of the prefecture of Miyagi to be guest of honor at a major forum devoted to locally produced foods. Open to members of the trade, teachers, journalists and the citizens of Sendai, the capital of Miyagi, the event was attended by over 500 people. Mojoli’s speech captured the attention and interest of the audience, who responded with a barrage of questions. The forum was followed by a press conference, organized by the local Slow Food convivium at Sendai University and attended by journalists from Japan’s main regional and national newspapers and a number of TV crews.
On January 8, Mojoli joined scholars and experts at the first meeting of the Japanese Ark Committee.
On January 11 and 12, he will be on the island of Hokkaido, in Sapporo, for the inauguration of the convivium set up by the famous chef Kiyomi Mikuni.
On January 14, finally, Mojoli will be in Tokyo as a guest of the Japanese Agriculture Minister Tadamori Oshima. First he will deliver a speech in a conference on food organized by the Ministry of Agriculture, then will have a private meeting with the minister himself, who he will officially invite to take part in the Slow Food International Congress to be held in Naples in November 2003. The day will be rounded off with a special press conference in which the vice-president will describe Slow Food’s history, philosophy and activities, as well as its prospect for growth in Japan.