In the past three months, FoodDrinkEurope has been active on several fronts, engaging with key stakeholders at high-level events and partnering up with EU and global organisations, in order to promote the importance of science and innovation in our sector. FoodDrinkEurope was a proud sponsor of the EU Contest for Young Scientists (EUCYS) 2017 and supported the prizes of the food category. The Contest took place in September in Tallinn and Mella Frewen, FoodDrinkEurope’s Director General, was a member of the jury. The food category prizes were awarded to the projects by young scientists that demonstrated, in a creative and innovative way, how the agri-food industry can overcome upcoming challenges and pave the way for a sustainable and competitive future for agriculture and food.
In July, FoodDrinkEurope was listed as one of the “Friends of Champions 12.3”, recognising our organisation’s contribution to the fight against food waste. Champions 12.3 is a coalition of nearly 40 leaders across government, business and civil society dedicated to inspiring ambition, mobilizing action, and accelerating progress toward achieving Target 12.3 of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Target 12.3 calls on the world to “halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses” by 2030.
Also in July, Mella Frewen was invited to be the Rapporteur of the European Commission's Business Forum at the African Union(AU)-EU Agriculture Ministerial Conference on "Making Sustainable Agriculture a Future for Youth in Africa", which took place at the FAO headquarters, in Rome. FoodDrinkEurope has been given the opportunity to have an active role in setting up an AU-EU Agribusiness Platform and to work closely with DG AGRI, which is taking the lead in the ongoing discussions. As a follow-up, Mella Frewen will join the Commission at the 6th EU-Africa Business Forum and AU - EU Summit, which will take place in November 2017, in Abidjan.
Another important milestone was Mella Frewen’s involvement, as member of the Board, in the ‘World Food Summit – Better Food for More People’ Global Strategic Partnership. This new initiative, launched at the World Food Summit in Copenhagen in August, aims to better engage politicians, researchers, companies and gastronomical leaders in order to uncover solutions to global challenges regarding better food for more people. Other members of the Board include author Carolyn Steel, the CEO of Nestle Nordics, Michiel Kernkamp, the head of Ikea Food, Michael LaCour, and Selina Juul, the founder of the food waste organisation “Stop Spild af Mad”.
Regarding upcoming engagement opportunities, Mella Frewen has been invited to join EU Agriculture and Rural Development Commissioner Phil Hogan and a delegation of EU agri-food producers and associations from various Member States in a high-level trade mission to Iran. Mella Frewen’s participation comes as a follow-up to her previous successful participation at the high-level trade mission to Canada, earlier this year.