Department of Agronomy Holds Anniversary Celebration Serial Activity: A Commemorative Meeting of Professor Isonaga Yoshi—the “Father of the Taiwan Ponlai Rice”, on the Occasion of the 120th Anniversary of His Birth on November 23rd
The Department of Agronomy held a memorial meeting in honor of Professor Isonaga
Yoshi, as part of the series of celebrations of the University’s anniversary. Known as “The Father
of Taiwan Ponlai Rice”(臺灣蓬萊米之父), Professor Isonaga Yoshi was born on November 23rd in Japan 120 years ago.
At the commemorative meeting, lectures were given on the feats that Isonaga accomplished, and the
original rice planting field at Bamboo Lake in Yangmingshan were also shown. Faculty and students
got together to cherish the memory of a great agriculturist who made long lasting contributions to
the development of Taiwan..
Ever since his arrival in Taiwan in 1912, Professor Isonaga Yoshi devoted himself to improving the breeding methodology of rice. His research findings were instrumental in the successful invention of the so called “Ponlai rice”(蓬萊米), a new variety that drastically changed the agro-economical system of Taiwan, and made the quality of Taiwan rice world famous. While he was serving as Professor at Taipei Imperial University’s College of Science and Agriculture, his students (who later became illustrious figures in Taiwan) included former Vice Premier Mr. Hsu Ching-Chung(徐慶鐘) and the deceased NTU Agronomy Professor Mr. Chen Jiong-song(陳炯崧). Isonaga’s teachings made remarkable contributions to Taiwan’s agricultural research, practice, and education. After having lived in Taiwan for half a century, Professor Isonaga retired at the age of 72. As a token of appreciation for Isonaga’s contributions, the Government of Taiwan promised to provide him with a lifelong supply of Ponlai rice of which he was the original developer.