The Hokkaido Agricultural Research Center (HARC) aims to develop new agricultural techniques particularly adapted to cold regions in order to provide a stable supply of safe food. It was originally established in 1901 as part of Sapporo Agricultural College. It underwent various changes as a research organization and became part of the National Agriculture and Food Research Organizaion (NARO) in 2006. With the reorganisation of NARO on April 2016, HARC will continue to pursue R&D aimed at solving various problems for agriculture, conducting basic and leading edge research on areas including development of new cultivars adapted to cold regions, farm work, animal feed production, and creation of functional food products.
Development of smart vegetation evaluation method by drones and AI
National Agriculture and Food Research Organization(NARO) in collaboration with Bandai Namco Research Inc. has developed a method using drones and artificial intelligence(AI) to easily estimate the coverage of legumes in pastures where grasses and legumes are mixedly sown. By this research result, it is possible to evaluate the ratio of legumes with high accuracy and efficiency in about 1/5,000 times of manual image analysis. Therefore, precise grassland management such as fertilization according to the density of legumes and additional sowing of insufficient legumes is possible. It is also expected to be used for the development of varieties of legumes suitable for mixed sowing.
Visit by the Parliamentary State Secretary. Hans-Joachim Futchel of Germany
A delegation from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture of the Federal Republic of Germany led by the Parliamentary State Secretary, H.E. Hans-Joachim Futchel visited the Hokkaido Agricultural Research Center (HARC/NARO) on November 16, 2018 for exchange of opinions and information on agriculture related research. The HARC Director-General, Dr. Ikuo Ando, and HARC researchers gave presentations on the research activities and issues faced by agriculture in Hokkaido such as declining number of farmers, increase in the management area per household, efficient usage system of large machineries, and strategies for preventing volunteer potatoes by soil freezing depth control. Samples of snacks made from potato varieties and bread using wheat variety "Yumechikara" developed by HARC were introduced during the discussion. The delegation expressed interest in establishing research collaboration in research fields such as ICT etc.
Visit of director of Indonesian Center for Agricultural Post Harvest Research and Development
The Director of Indonesian Center for Agricultural Post Harvest Research and Development et al, Prof. Ir. Risfaheri visited Hokkaido Agricultural Research Center (HARC/NARO) on October 25, 2018 for an overview of R&D and latest technologies on rice cultivation in Hokkaido. The Director-General, Dr. Ikuo Ando, and researchers gave presentations on research activities of HARC/NARO including rice cultivation in Hokkaido and introduced samples of rice varieties "Oborodzuki" and "Kitamizuho" and pasta using "Kitamizuho" developed by HARC/NARO. After discussion, the delegation visited experimental field for the development of rice cultivation technology. Prof. Ir. Risfaheri expressed his interest in establishing research collaboration in agricultural research between the two countries.
Visit of German Embassy Food & Agriculture Counsellor
The Food & Agriculture Counsellor of the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, Ms. Ursula Holzhauser visited the Hokkaido Agricultural Research Center (HARC/NARO) on November 27, 2017 and met with HARC Director-General and researchers for exchange of opinions and information on agriculture related research. The HARC researchers introduced the research achievements in upland agriculture such as soil freezing depth control by adjusting snowcover thickness, the status and direction of technological development in smart agriculture, and some crop cultivars developed by HARC. The German Counselor expressed interest in establishing research collaboration in research fields such as ICT etc.