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Takaho Taniguchi and Rie Akamatsu

In Japan, introducing farming experiences in the context of school has become popular in promoting “locally produced, locally consumed” foods. This study examined the relationship between farming experience and “attitudes toward locally grown foods” and “attachment to region” among Japanese children. In total, 1464 fifth-grade children in Japan participated in this study and completed questionnaires on their farming experiences, attitudes toward locally grown foods, and attachment to the region in which they live. The scales concerning “attitudes toward locally grown foods” and “attachment to region” were scored, and the scores were compared according to whether the child had farming experience using the Kruskal–Wallis test. About one-quarter of the children (25.6%) responded that they “very often” had farming experiences, and the scores for “attitudes toward locally grown foods” and “attachment to the region” were highest among the children who answered that they had experienced farming “very often” (both P < 0.001). Additionally, significant positive relationships between farming experience and “attitudes toward locally grown foods” (partial correlation coefficient r = 0.171, P < 0.001) and “attachment to region” (r = 0.156, P < 0.012) were found, even after adjusting for demographic characteristics. The results suggest that having the opportunity to experience farming was associated with more positive attitudes toward locally grown foods and the sense of attachment to one's region among children.