What can we do today to ensure delicious rice production over the next 1000 years?
The "Beautiful Rice" exhibition will be held at the Miraikan, as an event planned to coincide with the Science Centre World Summit 2017 (SCWS2017: November 15 - 17), the first Science Centre World Summit to be held in Asia. The exhibition analyzes the traditional rice cultivation methods that have continued for thousands of years in Asian farming villages from a scientific perspective
The uniqueness of the exhibition is to highlight the impressive cyclical system of matter and nutrients that connects with the natural surroundings, against the backdrop of the rice cultivation techniques that have been passed down for generations in Asian farming villages.
Visitors are encouraged to use the hints provided by the cyclical system of traditional rice cultivation to consider how science and technology should be used to ensure we can continue enjoying "delicious rice" in the future.
The exhibition begins with a large-scale model presenting a traditional Asian farming village. This serves as a base to introduce four sections which offer hints for considering the future of rice cultivation, and exploring the nature of sustainable food production.
Scenes of traditional rice cultivation in an Asian farming village are introduced in a circular model with a diameter of 4.5 meters. In addition to rice cultivation, the lifestyle and culture of Asian farming villages are presented with abundant illustrations, supported by video and ethnic cultural material. Simultaneously, the natural cycle of matter and nutrients that serves as the backdrop to these varied activities are explored from a scientific viewpoint, and arranged into the four key processes of to "receive," produce," "eat," and "return."
While modern agriculture has achieved high yields through the use of chemical fertilizers and magnification of scale, it has also lead to issues such as a strong dependency on fossil fuels and the loss of diversity in rice paddy ecosystems. Starting with rice cultivation, a panel exhibition introduces the current situation shared between various forms of agriculture in the 21st century.
This section explores the direction of "sustainable agricultural production" that we will leave to the next generation. What is necessary for us to continue "eating" in the future while maintaining coexistence between the Earth and humanity? A panel exhibition introduces various breakthrough ideas, such as efficient rice production in plant factories, and cyclic urban planning to support the reuse of resources.
A corner where each visitor can consider the method to achieve "1000 years of delicious rice." Through the activity of choosing from a variety of fictitious rice strains which each have different merits and demerits in factors including environmental burden and harvest yields, visitors can personally experience the difficulty of finding a single best answer.