The power of food systems
In September 2021, global representatives gathered for the Food Systems Summit, in the hopes of figuring out the future of food. Five major Action Areas were formulated, each supported by multi-stakeholder commitments around food consumption and food production, including the Food is Never Waste initiative, the Healthy Diets Initiative, the Agroecology Initiative, and the Local Food Supply Alliance.
These Action Areas align with the findings of the much-quoted EAT-Lancet Commission report on Food, Planet, Health, a global study that explored the question of how to feed a future population of 10 billion people on a healthy diet and within planetary boundaries. The report concluded that doing so is possible, but only by radically transforming our eating habits, improving food production, and reducing food waste.
About The Future of Food plenary
The global food system is broken – it is unsustainable, unhealthy, unjust, and in dire need of transformation. Our food systems contribute to climate change, biodiversity loss, unhealthy diets, hunger, and social inequality. There is a need for fundamental changes to the way our food is grown, processed, distributed, and consumed.
This aspiration is at the heart of the shift from the old agricultural productivity paradigm toward food systems, in line with the concept of planetary boundaries and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). But what does transformation really mean? And what do transformative pathways look like? And how can sustainable transformation be implemented in a just way?
This plenary explores the following questions: which actions are required to launch such radical food system transformation? What constitutes a healthy diet, from a sustainable food system perspective? And who has to lead this change?