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Biodiversity Conservation

Forest Maintenance

Inappropriate management of forests can lead to degradation of its ability to absorb CO2, as well as increasing the risk of landslide and avalanche disasters. It also affects ecosystems.Since 2016, employees of the WAVE—our research and development center located in Tokyo’s Hachioji City—and their families have been carrying out forest maintenance annually at the nearby green conservation area. These activities are held with support from the NPO Green Support Hachioji and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s Bureau of Environment. (In FY2020, this activity was cancelled due to irregular weather conditions and COVID-19).
This activity includes thinning trees and clearing undergrowth so that sunlight can reach the forest floor, and also sets aside time to enjoy the blessings of the forest through handicraft experiences for children and planting shiitake mushrooms. To date, a total of 69 persons (this number includes employees and their families) have participated in forest maintenance.

Preparation of a Habitat for Insects

In Komoro City, Nagano Prefecture, 115 species of butterflies were confirmed*1. Asama Plateau is a habitat and breeding environment for various rare species, which also include the Colias palaeno and Aporia hippia, both designated as Nagano Prefecture natural protected species. However, the Red Data Book Nagano Prefectural version 2015 (animal species), a list of endangered wildlife, includes 586 species of insects. There are many insects living in Nagano Prefecture that are at risk of being endangered. Measures need to be put in place to deal with this issue.

Accordingly, the NISSIN FOODS Group has been preparing a habitat for insects by creating a biotope*2 on the grounds of the Momofuku Ando Center of Outdoor Training (Momofuku Ando Center) in Komoro City, Nagano Prefecture since November 2017.

Furthermore, to increase interest in biodiversity, we solicited photographs of insects visiting the biotope to compile a digital insect picture book containing photos of 100 insect species. NISSIN FOODS Holdings received the Biodiversity Action Award in 2018 given by the Japan Committee of the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity (UNDB-J). The Company was also selected two years in a row for the Japan Nature Conservation Awards (2018 and 2019) organized by the Nature Conservation Society of Japan.

Implementation date No. of participants Activity details
2017 November 10-12 23 group employees, 6 local volunteers
  • Employees of the Group cut away grass and made land improvements to the area where the biotope is to be created.
  • Mr. Kazuo Unno, an insect photographer and a board member of Japan Insect Association, gave lectures on the natural environment and habitats for insects. Meanwhile, Mr. Tsuguo Kawai, a landscape architect that designs biotopes, conducted field tours.
2018 May 11-12 15 group employees, 339 general participants
  • Group employees and members of the general public planted edible flowers and nectar plants eaten by butterflies. Also, Mr. Unno hosted an insect photo session for the general public and an “insect house” was built as a dwelling for insects.
  • To further promote protection measures for endangered species living in Komoro City, NISSIN FOODS Holdings, Nagano Prefecture, Komoro City and the Momofuku Ando Center entered into the Biodiversity Partnership Agreement*3.
November 3 14 group employees
  • In addition to cutting the grass, raking up leaves and planting flowers in the biotope, a place for stag beetles to lay eggs was created using bed logs for the cultivation of shiitake mushrooms.
  • Starting in May 2018, a special corner was set up on the Momofuku Ando Center website dedicated to the Komoro Endangered Species Biotope Project, to grasp and record the types of insects that visit the biotope. It also compiles pictures sent in by the biotope’s visitors. As of November 2018, 278 photographs had been sent in. Photos of 151 different types of insects, including 4 types of endangered species, have been collected.
2019 March -
  • A digital picture book comprising 100 types of insects was completed using 100 insect photos chosen from among the pictures sent in and can be viewed on the Momofuku Ando Center website.
    A digital picture book of 100 insect species (in Japanese)
  • From May to July 2019, a survey to monitor insects was conducted to grasp the continual changes to insect fauna and reflect this into the maintenance and management of the biotope going forward. A survey conducted in fiscal 2019 immediately after the establishment of the biotope found there were 68 families and 163 species of insects at the site. This increased to 109 families and 268 species of insects a year later in fiscal 2020.
  • *1From the Second Komoro City Basic Environmental Plan (revised) (Environment and Water Supply Department, Komoro City, Nagano Prefecture)
  • *2“Biotope” in English comes from the German biotope, which originated from the Greek words bios (life) and topos (place). It refers to a space where local wildlife lives, grows, and reproduces.
  • *3An agreement under which citizens’ groups, companies, schools, and other organizations cooperate in activities to conserve the natural environment and biodiversity in Nagano Prefecture

Sustainable Procurement

COLUMN

Creation of Opportunities to Enjoy Nature by the ANDO Foundation

Providing Nature-Experience Activities

The Momofuku Ando Center of Outdoor Training (Momofuku Ando Center) is a dedicated facility established in Komoro City, Nagano in May 2010 for the purpose of training leaders for children’s nature-experience activities and popularizing outdoor activities. The Center is located on roughly 52,500-m2 of land with a full view of the Asama mountain range and full of nature.The facility is available for nature experience activities, outdoor activities, and nature education, for research, and for conferences and it also offers courses on nature experience activities. The Japan Long Trail Association executive office is located within the Momofuku Ando Center and uses the facility to host the Japan Long Trail Symposium annually. The Center fosters a “culture of walking” by supporting the popularization and development of “long trail,” a cross-country trip on foot, in cooperation with the Long Trail Association.

Seven treehouses designed by famous designers and architects create a space in which art can resonant with nature. The outdoor event Komoro Treehouse Project is held annually with this forest as the venue. The event held in November 2019—which included outdoor experiences like fire making and tree climbing, workshops for experiencing artwork using natural materials, food booths serving foods prepared with local seasonal ingredients, and outdoor concerts—attracted more than 2,000 visitors.

Support for Children’s Nature Experience Activities

In accordance with our goal to further spread and revitalize nature activities in line the concept “Nature activities nurture children’s creativity and can-do spirit,” the Ando Foundation has held the Tom Sawyer School Idea Contest since 2002. The contest solicits and selects unique and highly creative proposals for hands-on nature activities from schools and groups around Japan. Donations of support funds for these activities are made to 50 organizations. In addition, excellent organizations are commended each January on the basis of submitted activities reports from each support group.
For the 18th Tom Sawyer School Idea Contest in fiscal 2020, entries were received from 214 organizations. The results of the contest and details of activities have been disclosed on the Nature-experience.com website.

Nature-experience.com (in Japanese)

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