Symposium To Celebrate 40 Year Anniversary


Consumers Union of Japan is celebrating 40 years of consumer activism this year with a symposium on June 7, 2009. The event will be held at the Sohyo Kaikan in Ochanomizu, Tokyo 13:00-16:30.

Speakers will include Arthur Binard, Oe Tadaaki, Nakajima Kiichi, Yamazaki Tatori and Amagasa Keisuke.


Posted May 20th, 2009 in Miscellaneous, Uncategorized

What Caused the Food Price Hikes During 2008?

Here is the presentation made by Yasuaki YAMAURA, Secretary General of Consumers Union of Japan (CUJ), as one of the programs at the World Foodless Day in Tokyo on October 16, 2008.

The Present Situation of the Food Crisis


In April 2008, rice prices started to increase rapidly in the Philippines and several parts of Asia. This induced hoarding and export restrictions of grains, which in turn led to even higher grain prices around the world. There were food riots happening in a number of countries.

This also affected Japan, as increasing general food prices hit Japanese consumers hard. In addition, we experienced the problem of frozen gyoza made in China, contaminated by a very toxic insecticide. On top of that, there was a scandal of wrongfully distributed pesticide-tainted or moldy rice for human consumption, and melamine-contaminated milk products produced from imported milk. Such events caused deep anxiety among many consumers.

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Posted February 24th, 2009 in Food Security

Japan Resources No 146

cuj-jr-146 (pdf) Japan Resources No 146

Cold and sunny in Tokyo today – it is February and we are pleased to publish our latest issue of Japan Resources. Read about how Genetically Modified foods are accelerating the global food crisis, our concerns about antimicrobial resistance, and more. Please download the pdf file. – Editors


  • Avon Awards To Women for Kamiyama Michiko, FSCW
  • Keisuke Amagasa: How genetically modified foods are accelerating the food crisis
  • Demands to the Japanese government on the Codex guideline on antimicrobial resistance
  • Illegal financial activities of the UNIC
  • Letter to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Posted February 17th, 2009 in Japan Resources

How genetically modified foods are accelerating the food crisis

Here is the presentation made by Keisuke AMAGASA, Chairperson of NO! GMO Campaign, as one of the programs at the World Foodless Day held in Tokyo on October 16, 2008.

Good afternoon. In my brief presentation, I would like to summarise the present state of genetically modified (GM) crop and food in 13 points, referring to their relationship to today’s food crisis.

1. The farmland planted with GM crops is continuously expanding in the world.

Most of the GM-planted farmland is located in North and South America, with the United States accounting for about half of the global total GM-planted area. The number of countries cultivating GM crops remains limited. This is because GM crops are concentrated in regions that are dominated by Monsanto and/or closely involved in the U.S. food strategy. On the other hand, countries free of these influences also remain free of GM crops.

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Posted January 15th, 2009 in Biotechnology, Food Security

World Foodless Day in Tokyo

Rising food prices, food contamination, reduced food production induced by climate change — food insecurity is spreading all over the world.  Japan is suffering from low food self-sufficiency (barely 40% on calorie basis), a string of food safety scandals and frauds. The occasion of World Food Day on October 16 organised by the FAO is an opportune time to send a strong message of food sovereignty and highlight consumers’ strategies to address the food crisis. 

How can consumers cope with this crisis? Several NGOs will organise a forum, Another World Food Day, in Tokyo to discuss a wide range of current food problems and solutions.  

The forum titled “Sky-rocketing food prices and crisis: hype and reality” will include the following themes: 

  • The real cause of the rising food prices
  • How genetically modified foods are accelerating the food crisis
  • Can Japan feed itself?

Organised by: 

  • NO! GMO Campaign
  • Consumers Union of Japan
  • No to WTO/FTA Grass-roots Campaign
  • Japan Organic Agriculture Association

Date and time: 

  • October 16, 2008
  • afternoon session: 14:00-16:00
  • evening session: 19:00-21:00


  • Taito-ku Shogai Gakushu Center
  • Nishi-Asakusa 3-25-6, Taito-ku, Tokyo
  • Nearby stations: JR Uguisudani St. (South exit)/Tokyo Metro Iriya St. (Exit No.1)/Tsukuba Express Asakusa St. (Exit A2)

For further information: NO! GMO Campaign (email: office(at)

Posted September 30th, 2008 in Food