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Food Systems for Sustainable Development


December 16, 2016

Elisabetta Recine, Counselor of the Brazilian National Food and Nutrition Security Council, and Professor at the University of Brasilia
Dipa Sinha, Professor of Economics at Ambedkar University
Fengying Nie, Deputy Director of the Center for International Agricultural Research at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences
Eileen Kennedy, former dean and Professor of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University
Simon Kimenju, Research Fellow, Tegemeo Institute of Agricultural Policy and Development of Egerton University
Kathleen Merrigan, Professor of Public Policy and Executive Director of Sustainability at the George Washington University

How do typical diets in different countries impact sustainability and climate change? How can markets and technology help reduce poverty among farmers and agricultural workers? These and other pressing issues were discussed by members of the UN High Level Panel Experts on Food Security and Nutrition at the latest installment of the Global Agriculture Seminar Series at Johns Hopkins SAIS.

Panelists commented on the rising importance of agriculture to solving global challenges, highlighting food waste in particular. A surprising 40 percent of food is wasted globally, constituting the third largest source of greenhouse gases.

Farmers in developing countries often struggle with profitability, market access, low productivity, and high costs of production. Meanwhile, in developed countries the integration of technology offers great potential to transform food production and delivery, but policy reforms lag while elected officials focus on other national priorities. 

Taking questions from the audience, panelists discussed urban agriculture, vertical farms, the state of regulations in the food business, food security, nutritional guidelines, and the upcoming renewal of the US farm bill in 2018.

Video available at