Katsurao Mango Festival

The Graduate School of Agricultural Science at Tohoku University, in collaboration with the Fukushima Innovation Coast Initiative, hosted a Mango Festival in Katsurao Village in late November. The event drew nearly a hundred local residents and community members.

Led by Tohoku University Associate Professor Kazuhisa Kato, the research team stationed at the Katsurao Plant Factory has been successfully cultivating crops like mangoes and tomatoes in three greenhouses since 2018.

Each greenhouse is equipped with advanced technology that regulates temperature, humidity and carbon dioxide levels. The crops are closely monitored by researchers and staff through multiple cameras, an automated data storage system and regular on-site visits.

The team's latest project was to devise a cultivation system that would postpone the flowering and harvesting period of their mangoes, aligning it with the peak gift-giving season at the end of the year.

A highly successful late harvest in November led to the decision to hold a mango festival. Five types of desserts were made to showcase the mangoes - cassata, lassi, pound cake, chiffon cake and pudding. Festival attendees enjoyed two complimentary desserts of their choice and a lassi drink.

The dessert recipes were crafted by students from Koriyama Women's University, with different mango varieties used in each item. Irwin mangoes were featured in the cassata, Kinmitsu in the pudding, Natsuyuki in the lassi, and Red and Green Kitts in the chiffon and pound cakes.

Four students also helped to prepare and serve the desserts on the day. "To be honest, it was a challenge to prepare so many different types of sweets in such a short time, but the feedback we got was very positive," said Maki Tsuboi, a staff member at the Katsurao Plant Factory. "Many people said the mangoes were delicious and some even said it was their first time tasting fresh mangoes."

The festival ended with a raffle and the awarding of Keats mangoes to three lucky winners. "This was the first event where the general public was able to taste our mangoes, and we were happy to see so many people turn up. Some even came an hour before the festival was scheduled to start," said Kato. "It was great to see the support and enthusiasm from the community."

The Katsurao Plant Factory was originally established in response to concerns about the safety of Fukushima's fruits and vegetables following the Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant accident in 2011.

Over the last six years, the facility has been cultivating various tropical crops such as bananas and tomatoes, in addition to the mangoes.

The facility also serves as an educational hub, hosting lectures and visits from local school children and residents. In April this year, Kato and his team distributed 177 Suzukoma tomato seedlings and taught community members how to cultivate them.


Associate Professor Kazuhisa Kato
Tohoku University Graduate School of Agricultural Science
Tel: 022-757-4093

Page Top