Recap from Food Nations Global Food Talk “Creating resilient agri-food systems with circularity in mind”
In connection with World Food Summit and Circular City Week, Food Nation hosted a Global Food Talk on May 5 with opening remarks from HRH Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark. The Global Food Talk focused on circularity and climate action.
Food Nations patron HRH Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark opened the talk with motivating words about how a shift towards a circular approach is both necessary and inevitable and requires responsive, clever and creative thinking, all while protecting the food systems from external shocks: “Now, more than ever, we can benefit from the Danish tradition of finding innovative solutions that can adapt to a changing climate and bring us towards a more sustainable future”, he said.
He was followed by the Danish Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries who highlighted, that we need green transformation to ensure a more stable and sustainable agricultural sector, not least due to the uncertainties that the Russian invasion of Ukraine has on the global food supply. The Minister said: “We want to use the green transformation of the agricultural sector to ensure a more stable and sustainable agricultural sector. Therefore, Denmark is pushing for a sustained focus on new and innovative green solutions.”
Produce, protect, reduce and restore
Key-note speaker Tim Searchinger, Senior Fellow and Technical Director of the Food Program at the World Resources Institute explained how we probably will need about 50% more food in the world by 2050. All this, without expanding agricultural land, and at the same time while reducing or even eliminating the net production emissions of agriculture. “If we tried to feed the world in 2050 with today’s farms, we would end up clearing an area of land equal to about four times the continent of the United States”, he said.
Our second keynote speaker, Andy Reisinger, Vice-Chair in Working Group III Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) followed up by stating that international markets play an important role to enable the most efficient use of land resources: “International coordination is critical, not just for direct climate change policies, but also in upscaling of climate finance, technology transfer and capacity building”.
Changing the paradigm: Nothing is waste!
Lisbeth Henricksen, Director of Innovation, SEGES Innovation and Christine Nellemann, Director of Institute at National Food Institute, DTU, who participated in the first fireside session, emphasised that we need curiosity to strengthen innovation and initiate cross-sector collaboration, while keeping in mind that everybody across the food value chain must take responsibility. Furthermore, we need to change our mindset toward the fact that nothing is waste. Waste and side streams are basically new raw materials for new productions.
Creating new businesses with circularity in mind
Jesper Burgaard, CEO KMC and Carsten Lind Pedersen, CEO Enorm from the second fireside session agreed that it is good business to work on utilising all the resources available to you in your business and that strong research and development is key. The new products that you can make out of side streams, can actually help bring up another business than your main business.