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The next editions of the Sustainable Foods Summit will take place in 2017: The North American edition will be hosted in San Francisco (18-20 January), European edition in Amsterdam (1-2 June), the Latin American edition in São Paulo (18-19 September), whilst the Asia-Pacific edition will take place in Singapore (29-30 November). Please register to receive regular updates.

The Latin American edition of the Sustainable Foods Summit was hosted in São Paulo on 29-30 June 2016. View the summit pics here

The summit comprised four conference sessions over 2 days.


Session One: Sustainability & Marketing Update

The summit begun with a pioneering firm giving their perspectives on sustainable development. An update was given on the international market for organic food & drink. How significant are Latin America and Brazil in the global arena? The use of sustainable materials to reduce the packaging footprint of food and beverages will be discussed. A case study was given of a leading retailer on how it is meeting the sustainability challenge, whilst some insights are given into the ethical consumer. The session ended with panelists having a discussion on marketing green values.

Session Two: Food Traceability

With consumers asking greater questions about the food they eat than at any other time in history, this session covered important developments in food traceability. Details were given on the growing number of standards and certification schemes that provide transparency. Are standards the only way forward for transparent supply chains? With growing concerns about GM ingredients in the food chain, an update was given on recent developments in the US and Europe. What are the implications to producers in Latin America?

Other speakers discussed the growing relationship between traceability and food safety, as well as food authenticity. Case studies were given of food companies on how they are providing traceability for their products. The session adjourned with the panel discussing the role of food labels for traceability. Is the way forward, multiple labels for individual ingredients, such as sustainable palm oil, soy, etc.? Or, will holistic sustainability schemes emerge that cover multiple ingredients?

Session Three: Ingredients for Sustainability

The food industry is hungry for new ingredients. Some food and beverage companies look for new ingredients for product innovations, whilst others to improve the sustainability credentials of their products. This session covered important such developments.

The keynote speaker highlighted the social dimension of foods. How can sustainable sourcing of ingredients create a positive social impact? Other papers covered advances in natural sweeteners, algae-based ingredients, and novel sustainable ingredients. With a proteins crisis looming over the food industry, the potential of plant-based proteins was explored. To conclude, featured speakers will debate the future of sustainable ingredients.

Session Four: Tackling Food Waste

One of the most pressing sustainability issues in the food industry is waste. According to the FAO (United Nations), up to a third of food for human consumption is lost or wasted in the supply chain. At the same time, almost a billion people go hungry because of lack of food. In Brazil, it is estimated that 40,000 tons of food goes to trash each day. Apart from the social and economic implications of food waste, there are environmental impacts. Food waste in landfill is a major contributor to global warming, creating almost a quarter of methane gases. Food losses also represent a waste of resources in production, such as agricultural land, water, energy and inputs.

This session looked at approaches to reduce food losses in the supply chain, as well as food waste at the consumer level. What role can food companies and retailers play? How can consumers be encouraged to undertake responsible consumption? The role of packaging in waste reduction, as well as landfill diversion and food rescue programs, was discussed. The session adjourned with the panel discussing consumption: what is the best way to encourage positive change in consumers?


The summit proceedings are available for a professional fee. Click here for further details.

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Organic Monitor

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Supporting Organizations:

IBD Food Design
OIA Argencert
Ecocert imaflora
Organics Brasil

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Food News Latam Food Ingredients Latam
Ethical Markets CI Organicos
Organic Wellness News
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