AgriVision 2023 illuminates pathways to future-proof proteins

More than 300 from across the feed-to-food value chain convened in the Netherlands
calendar icon 6 July 2023
clock icon 3 minute read

More than 300 delegates representing every segment of the feed-to-food value chain convened at AgriVision, 26-28 June, in Noordwijk aan Zee, the Netherlands, to reimagine, debate and discuss pathways for future-proofing proteins. Leaders at the forefront of industry, research and development, agri-tech, policy, and consumer behaviour shared emerging insights, moderated panel conversations, and challenged attendees to take action in order to meet a projected 70% increase in protein demand by 2050.

Nutreco COO David Blakemore opened AgriVision, noting that the present moment offers an opportunity for collaboration and innovation to accelerate across the feed-to-food value chain. 

“The good news is that the people in this room today have incredible capabilities and potential to make a difference,” Blakemore stated. “As players in the feed-to-food value chain, today’s threats will drive us to be better and what we do over the coming years will have a significant impact on the future of the planet. AgriVision continues to be a platform to bring us together and drive transformation forward.”

Paul Polman, former CEO of Unilever, and an active climate analyst, author and contributor to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, delivered keynote remarks and inspired delegates to apply a net-positive perspective to rethinking the future of protein away from a linear production model toward a collaborative approach. 

“We are literally playing with the future of humanity," Polman noted. “The world has been incredibly flexible and increased its capacity to absorb our CO2 emissions, but it’s run out and we are very close to a negative tipping point.” 

He urged AgriVision delegates to rethink the future of protein and create the more sustainable, collaborative, and transformative partnerships now needed to address the most burning challenges. 

“The cost of not acting has become significantly higher than the cost of acting and being less bad isn’t good enough anymore,” Polman cautioned. 

He observed that companies that apply such a change in mindset are increasingly differentiating themselves and performing better than their peers.

During a panel conversation, participants considered how a surge in climate-focused food labels is raising regulators’ and consumers’ concerns about greenwashing. As advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) accelerate, panel participants also looked at how AI is influencing the feed-to-food sector today, and debated how AI will affect decisions across the value chain in the future.

Today’s consumers are increasingly influencing how the food they purchase is produced and marketed. Acknowledging this trend, Imke van Gasselt, VP Health & Sustainable Diets at Ahold Delhaize, shared a retailers’ perspective on efforts to improve transparency in the supply chain.

Other areas of the program delved into Nutreco’s research and development efforts to discover novel protein sources that can reduce environmental pressure on the planet. From a supply chain perspective, Abhay Hanjura, co-founder of Licious, delivered a Bollywood-inspired presentation, The Great Indian Meat Story, to describe how India is deploying on-demand meat delivery channels. Brett Stuart, president of Global AgriTrends offered a deep dive into data, sharing findings from research that will influence protein production, retail, consumption, and circular models moving forward. Dr. Keith Sumption, Chief Veterinary Officer of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations delivered cautionary remarks about risks posed by zoonotic disease spill-over. Collectively, nearly 20 speakers remarked on ideas, innovation, and strategies for leveraging policy, technological innovation and social tailwinds to meet projected protein demand in the next half-century.

Remarking on the event, Fulco van Lede, CEO of Nutreco, stated, “As we host the 11th gathering of AgriVision, Nutreco and Trouw Nutrition are honoured to organize and host a collaborative forum combining provocative ideas for tomorrow with practical ideas that can be deployed today. As we look toward the mid-century milestone, this gathering provides a venue for collaborating with stakeholders to reflect, reset and take action toward our mission of safely, efficiently, and sustainably feeding the future.”

Founded in 2000 by Nutreco and its livestock feed business line Trouw Nutrition, AgriVision is a bi-annual forum that focuses on critical issues affecting the global feed-to-food sector. More information about AgriVision is available at AgriVision 2023 - Trouw Nutrition.

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