The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

Kochi University., Research and Education Faculty, Natural Sciences Cluster, Agriculture Unit Professor Yoshitoku Yamamoto

Research for understanding the state of wild sago palm forests and the sustainable use of these forests

Research grant

Project Description

The sago palm is distributed in Southeast Asia and Melanesian, and its stem (marrow) stores large amounts of starch (about 100 to 500kg of dry starch per tree). In recent years, sago palms have attracted much attention as a source of industrial starch, not just as a food material, due to the high level of starch productivity, and accordingly the development of wild sago palm forests is underway in Indonesia's half of the New Guinea Island where the plant originates from. This research will conduct research over a period of three years on the changes compared to prior to wild sago palm forest development from the perspectives of (1) the weather and soil environment, (2) the diversity of wildlife (flora and insects), (3) biomass and starch productivity, and (4) the impact on the living environment and economy of the local population. In addition, the research will identify the issues accompanying the development of wild sago palm forests by taking into overall consideration the survey results, and consider measures for sustainable development.

Climate changeMarine resources/foodPreservation of surface soil and forestsEnergy problemPreservation of biodiversity and ecosystem
Grant year
FY2011 Research Grants
Grant term
3 years
April 2012 - March 2015
Grant amount
14,992,000 yen
Activity region
Sorong Regency, West Papua Province, Indonesia
Wild sago palm forest

Overview of the Organization

Professor Yoshitoku Yamamoto
Professor Yoshitoku Yamamoto
Specialist field
Crop science, cultivation science, tropical useful plant science
Affiliated academic societies
Crop Science Society Of Japan, Japanese Society for Tropical Agriculture (JSTA), The Society of Sago Palm Studies, Japanese Society Of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition
In 1975, became Assistant at Kochi University Faculty of Agriculture. In 1981 took the post of Assistant Professor at Kochi University Faculty of Agriculture. In 1990, became a Professor at Kochi University Faculty of Agriculture and The United Graduate School of Agriculture Sciences, Ehime University (concurrent positions). Has a Doctor of Agricultural Science (1989: Tohoku University).
WEB site
Collaborating researchers
Tetsushi Yoshida, Ryo Arakawa, Tatsuya Fukuda, Makito Mori, Akira Miyazaki, DaisukeYasutake (Kochi University), Yutaka Ando, Kenichi Tsunoda, Yuka Sasaki (Yamagata University), Yoshiaki Nishikawa, Akira Watanabe (Nagoya University), Yoshihiko Nishimura (University of the Ryukyus), Soshi Hayakawa (National Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences)
Research record
  • (1) Irawan, A.F., Y. Yamamoto, A. Miyazaki, T. Yoshida and F.S. Jong 2012. Growth performance of the transplanted sago palm (Metroxylon sagu Rottb.) suckers with different earliness of trunk formation Tropical Agriculture and Development 56 (3): 81-87.
  • (2) Rembon F. S., Y. B. Pasolon and Y. Yamamoto and T. Yoshida 2011. Comparative studies on the physicochemical properties of mineral soils in the major growing areas of sago palm (Metroxylon sagu Rottb.) in eastern Indonesia. Sago Palm 19: 1-12.
  • (3) Yoshitoku Yamamoto 2010, "Bio-fuel strategy from regions to the world", Tropical Agriculture Research 3 (2): 98-102.
  • (4) Yamamoto, Y., F. S. Rembon, K. Omori, T. Yoshida, Y. Nitta, Y. B. Pasolon and A. Miyazaki 2010. Growth characteristics and starch productivity of three varieties of sago palm (Metroxylon sagu Rottb.) in Southeast Sulawesi, Indonesia. Tropical Agriculture and Development 54 (1):1-8.