The goal is to realize a society everyone is provided with clean water and safe, nourishing food.
At the Innovation Network for Co-Creating the Future, we believe that the following 4 changes will have a significant impact in resolving societal problems in the area of Water and Food.
Illness caused by lifestyle habits account for about 30% of national medical expenses and about 60% of deaths among those afflicted are caused by such diseases. Moreover, the proportion will increase further as the aging problem worsens.
Innovation for efficient production and supply of food
Globalization and worldwide economic advancements have prompted massive rural-urban migrations towards the cities, and as a result we are experiencing labor shortages in the agricultural sector. In Japan, aging population and labor shortage in the agricultural sector are problems growing in severity. The productivity of the agricultural sector is lower than that of other industries, and young people are not attracted to employment opportunities in this sector. Furthermore, large amount of food waste is generated at the food production, distribution, and consumption stages.
Innovation in the development of efficient means of water utilization
Due to explosive population growth in developing countries, it has become more difficult to sustainably secure a sufficient level of food production. In addition to declining levels of food self-sufficiency in Japan, competition with emerging economies for sources of protein will inevitably rise. For this reason, Japan may face difficulty in securing stable protein sources such as meat and fishery products in the future.
Innovations to close gaps between supply and demand in medical and nursing care
Water resources that can be used for drinking and agriculture is undergoing depletion worldwide. In Japan, aging social infrastructure and rising replacement costs have added to the problem. Old water supply infrastructure needs to be upgraded or replaced, especially in areas where there is rapid population decline, and thus there is a need to come up with an efficient renewal and reconstruction method.
Plant Life Systems Co., Ltd.
Plant Life Systems has developed a biologic artificial-intelligence system that helps in the production of high quality tomatoes. Sugar-rich tomatoes can be grown efficiently and at low cost even under hot and humid conditions. Through the use of ICT and these production-support systems, farmers can be better incorporated in the agricultural value chain and operate profitable business. The business model was developed by an automobile engineer with experience in self-driving and navigation systems.
More [In Japanese]
Setsuro Tech Co., Ltd.
Setsuro Tech aims to improve the efficiency and quality of livestock business with its new genome editing techniques. By employing electroporation* in animal genome editing, Setsuro Tech has contributed to the mass production of meat and its improved efficiency.
*A method to introduce certain materials into cells by applying high electric voltage.
More [In Japanese]
About mentoring by MRI scientists with expert knowledge in the various fields, cash award and supplementary awards.
About the competition procedure and criteria for participation.
About the schedule from the period between the application deadline and the final screening.
The following themes will also be considered for this program:
Business proposals may also be submitted for multifaceted social issues that involve several focus areas.
Note: business proposals focusing only on infrastructure technologies (e.g. AI and blockchains) will not be accepted.