Recently, the food and beverage industry has led advancements in delivering long-term sustainability. From the USDA’s international Sustainable Productivity Growth Coalition
for global food systems transformation, to the prominent place of agriculture and food security on the COP27 agenda, we are witnessing the beginnings of a major leap towards sustainable food supply chains.
Improving the way we produce food today can contribute to the long-term viability and sustainability of the industry. The bullwhip effect of increased consumer food demand and labour shortages is already being compounded by climate change impacts and inflationary pressures, causing a threat of more supply chain disruption. There is a need for business to futureproof our current food agri-systems and strike a balance between quick fixes and building long-term resilience.
At next week’s future of food conference in Minneapolis
, leading stakeholders across the value chain will gather to discuss how food and drinks brands can tackle Scope 3 emissions, scale regenerative practices and drive supply chain resilience through a nature-positive approach. Registrations are still open, and you can register here.
Ahead of the event, the Innovation Forum team has been working to highlight the main areas of innovation within the industry, and speak to leading businesses and experts on these important topics.
The potential of regenerative agriculture
With the growing demand for global food security, the need – and the opportunities – to accelerate the transition to more sustainable, resilient and productive food systems are immense. Regenerative agriculture is an omnipresent buzzword in this field. Innovation Forum’s Bea Stevenson recently published a two-part series unpacking the vital role of regenerative agriculture in present and future food systems. The first article investigates how regenerative agriculture can act as a catalyst to achieve sustainable nutrition and food security, and the second follows up with actions that the agrifood value chain can take to implement it at scale – notably through incentives programmes, cost-sharing mechanisms and ensuring fair and equitable farmer incomes.
You can read the full regenerative agriculture series here:
Global businesses are acutely aware of the issues plaguing current food agri-systems, and many are turning to regenerative agriculture as a key solution. As part of their net zero roadmap, Nestlé pledged to source up to 50% of its key ingredients regeneratively by 2030.
Nestlé’s recent global virtual event, hosted in partnership with Innovation Forum, featured updates on progress to date and deep dives into two local case studies. Hearing live from senior Nestlé colleagues, alongside industry experts, farmers and local project managers across multiple geographies, we discussed how regenerative agriculture programs are working on the ground and the outlook for the future of regenerative farming.
Building resilient supply chains
Supply chain resilience is crucial across all industries and the food and beverage sector is no exception. In a recent webinar, hosted in partnership with Regrow, expert speakers from General Mills, Kellogg Company and Regrow shared approaches, tools and technologies that leading brands are using to drive collaboration across value chains for a climate-food system. In this hour-long session, moderated by Innovation Forum’s Toby Webb, key takeaways included the importance of building partnerships to drive agriculture system resilience, and how the adoption of jurisdictional sourcing approaches can better equip business to support farmers.
Business innovations are constantly evolving to drive resilience within supply chains. For some useful case studies, listen here
to a recent podcast interview with Ben Aschenaki, delivery unit lead and rebuild facility lead at Regeneration. who speaks to Innovation Forum’s Ian Welsh on the potential of agroforestry in delivering long-term resilience in the coffee sector. You can also hear about Sime Darby Plantation’s strategies
for developing truly responsible commodity sourcing, such as responsible recruitment procedures and grievance mechanisms, from chief sustainability officer, Rashyid Anwarudin.
The future of agriculture
Continuing these discussions in the future of meat debate webinar, we discussed the best options for human and planetary health with Samantha Werth from US Roundtable for Sustainable Beef, THIS’ Andy Shovel, and GOAL Sciences’ and Global Food and Agribusiness Network’s Peer Ederer. In a highly spirited debate, the panel highlighted projected consumer trends around meat and its alternatives, and discussed whether nutritious and sustainable meat and meat alternatives can co-exist.
You can view the video recording here
or listen as a podcast here.