All for “Health and Happiness” of the Family Illuminating work of J-FOODS on Japanese traditional food and Nippon Quality

Fumie YAMAZAKI
Representative Director
Organization for the Promotion of J-FOODS Corporation

Q: How was J-FOODS established?

Do you know the 5000-page long McGovern Report* announced in 1977 by George S. McGovern? It suggests that the ideal diet is composed of unrefined carbohydrates or nuts, seasonal vegetables and fruits, and fish. This is the typical diet of the Japanese Genroku Period (1688-1707). J-FOODS was established to propose the traditional diet that leads to “health & happiness” of our future children and their families. This is a “current” diet proposal that prevents illnesses (including pre-symptomatic state) and biased views.
* The average medical expenses of a US citizen in the 1960s were the highest in the world and the US ranked 26th for average life span. The US Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs was established from the rising concern about the collapse of US economy and they created a report by gathering scholars from all over the world to conduct research on food and health.

Q: J-FOODS is a recently established institution. What are your goals?

In Japan, Asia, and other regions in the world, there are many traditional foods with great health effects and nutrition. Even if the products are new in Japan, we want to have clear traceability of farming and breeding to processing, manufacturing, and distributing in order to secure the safety of the foods. Furthermore, we will work to illuminate “Nippon Quality” foods in both inside and outside of Japan. The “J” in J-FOODS means Japan or Japanese.

Q: What are your product categories?

We have 3 big categories: plant-origin, animal-origin, and sea-origin. Plant-origin foods include fermented products, Japanese and foreign superfoods, herb and tea, and grains. Animal-origin foods include fermented products and fish oil. Sea-origin foods are seaweeds and fish oil.

Q: We heard that there are certifications issued by J-FOODS. Could you tell us about that?

Our 1st J-FOODS Certification has two levels: “Superfood Basic” and “Superfood Advanced.” The basic level teaches you basic information and history of superfoods, the characteristics of 15 representative superfoods, and how to cook them. The advanced level will teach you dietetics in order to have deeper knowledge of advanced superfoods, and how to choose and use superfoods depending on the situation. In addition, you rediscover the positive characteristics of superfoods that are very close to your everyday lives. We will continue our enlightenment activities by spreading our certification categories to oil, fermented products, grains, and so on.

Q: What is the strength of J-FOODS certification curriculum?

Many superfoods are unfamiliar items from across the world such as South America. In order to eat safe superfoods, it is important to be able to distinguish the “quality” of the products. We work under the concept of contributing to food safety and food education by selecting “Nippon Quality” or quality that is accepted in Japan. The J-FOODS certification curriculum will allow you to think and learn about the meaning of “Nippon Quality”.

Q: What is the J-FOODS license system?

We’re planning to issue a J-FOODS Master License after you earn a certain number of credits by attending our certification seminars or seminars of partner organizations, and join workshops on dietetics and recipe development. This is still under development so we will make an announcement once it is ready.

Q: Ms. Yamazaki, could you give us a brief introduction of yourself?

In addition to being a Representative Board Director of J-FOODS, I am the COO of Organico Inc., Board Member of JAR Promotion Organization, Board Member of Heartful Link Asia, and a health foods coordinator.
For many years, I have been working on food development. The type of food I’ve developed is wide in variety from baby food to healthy foods, weight-loss foods, nursing care foods, ordinary foods, supplements, and beauty care foods. My past experiences are reflected on my current activities at J-FOODS.