Message from the executive president

Executive president Takaaki Nishii

The Ajinomoto Foundation for Dietary Culture was established in 1989 for the purpose of raising public awareness and supporting dietary culture research, and in 2013 became a public interest incorporated foundation. Since its establishment it has continued to organize many projects for dietary culture researchers as well as for members of the general public interested in dietary culture.

Food was once not considered to be a subject for research or discussion because it is such a familiar presence in all people’s lives. However, experts from various fields who came together based on the concept that “food is culture” engaged in discussions about food from multiple perspectives, which ultimately led to the establishment of this foundation and brought the term “dietary culture” into general usage.

Since then, the foundation has continued to support food culture-related research in the form of research grants and also through the Forum on Dietary Culture, a membership-based, interdisciplinary academic discussion group that brings experts from many fields together, including sociology, humanities and natural sciences. Through various other activities and initiatives, including open symposiums, public lectures, our Dietary Culture Library, public exhibitions, and publications including the food culture magazine "vesta" and the records of the annual Forum on Dietary Culture, we are working to convey the attractions and profundity of food culture to as many people as possible.

In particular, the Dietary Culture Library has holdings of over 45,000 books related to dietary culture, including more than 200 items of Nishikie (multi-colored woodblock prints) and more than 300 Kotenseki (classic books from the Edo period (1603-1868) and before). These materials are extremely valuable in that they enable us to know about dietary culture in eras when there were no photographs. Please come and visit and take a look at our library collection.

Looking to the future, by deepening our various ventures and further developing food culture, we will contribute to the creation and improvement of a rich and healthy diet for the people. We appreciate your continued warm understanding and support.

Takaaki Nishii
Representative Director,
Chairman of the Board