Averting Farmageddon: Sustainable Food for All - Proceedings

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Information about Averting Farmageddon: Sustainable Food for All - Proceedings
Education

Published on March 6, 2014

Author: CIWF

Source: slideshare.net

“We should ask society; do not over-consume food ... We should find ways to have a more sustainable animal husbandry system ... The less intensive the agricultural system, the more sustainable.” Professor Athanasios Tsaftaris, Minister of Rural Development and Food, Greece “We have to change the way we think…” Nicos Kouyialis, Minister of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment, Cyprus “The questions of the 1960s are not the questions of today…” Keynote speaker Dr Olivier De Schutter, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food “Consumption is as important as production and the two have got to meet.” Philip Lymbery, Chief Executive, Compassion in World Farming “The impact of factory farming on animals is not a standalone issue – it’s bad news for people and the planet, too.” Reineke Hameleers, Director, Eurogroup for Animals “Diet is no longer a private matter…” Magda Stoczkiewicz, Director, Friends of the Earth Europe

“We can still solve the problem without having to rely on industrial farming.” Marco Contiero, EU Policy Director on Agriculture, Greenpeace European Unit “We don’t need meat for health; we don’t need meat for calories.” Professor Dr Mark Post, Professor and Chair of Physiology, Maastricht University “One third of the increase in food production is due to population growth, the rest is due to diet.” Professor Dr Jan Willem Erisman, Extraordinary Professor of Integrated Nitrogen Studies and Director of the Louis Bolk Institute ”Give the right price signals and embed the social and environmental costs of food production in the final price...this is of primary importance.” Rosita Zilli, Deputy Secretary-General, Euro Coop

Introduction The day-long Averting Farmageddon conference in Brussels, held on 18 February 2014, was the result of a unique collaboration between the Greek Presidency of the European Union and Compassion in World Farming. It took place ahead of the launch of the long-awaited Sustainable Food Communication from the European Commission, due in spring 2014. The event explored the far-reaching, often devastating, impacts of intensive-livestock farming – on people and the planet, as well as animals. Crucially, speakers also focused on possible solutions to the intensive-farming problem, presenting a vision of a sustainable food and farming future and practical ways to fulfil it.

Event summary Averting Farmageddon: Sustainable Food for All brought together more than 150 delegates from a cross-section of organisations and initiatives, including government bodies, education and research establishments, NGOs, international movements, and retail and consumer networks. More than twenty experts spoke at the event, bringing a catalogue of insights, ideas and innovations to the food and farming debate. The speakers covered a spectrum of fascinating themes, including the importance of “nutritional security”, the rise of the lab-grown burger, the “demand vs production” debate and why nitrogen footprints matter. Cutting-edge, contrasting and colourful, the day’s many presentations and discussions converged towards the subject dominating the recently published book Farmageddon: The True Cost of Cheap Meat – namely, our broken food system and how to fix it. Philip Lymbery, Compassion’s CEO and co-author of the groundbreaking title, gave a talk at the conference that was – both literally and metaphorically – at the very heart of the day.

Style of proceedings This presentation outlines the key themes that arose during Averting Farmageddon: Sustainable Food for All. Rather than document everything that was said on the day, it throws the spotlight on the most important issues, and includes the most relevant quotes and statistics from the speakers. Also included are links to the speaker presentations.

Key themes

Reality-check the global “meat rush” “We need to stop talking about increasing productivity; it’s the wrong narrative.” Marco Contiero, EU Policy Director on Agriculture, Greenpeace European Unit 1

Reality-check the global “meat rush” 1 We must reality-check the global “meat rush” by challenging the assumption that we need to produce more, and think more about demanding (consuming) less. Dr Olivier De Schutter, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, explained how the boom in meat production since the 1960s has now far outstripped the boom in population, with average global meat consumption exceeding the 35kg per person per year that’s generally accepted as a threshold for sustainable meat consumption by 20%; Western nations are mainly responsible, with consumption as high as 120kg per person per year in some countries. A similar story came from Professor Dr Jan Willem Erisman of the Louis Bolk Institute, who argued that the average EU citizen eats around 70% more protein than needed, raising the concern that we’re choosing “food luxury” over food security.

Reality-check the global “meat rush” 1 Marco Contiero, EU Policy Director on Agriculture at Greenpeace, highlighted the irony in worrying about feeding the world in 2050, citing today’s one billion hungry people as society’s immediate priority. He called for a redefinition of agricultural yields, suggesting “number of people nourished per hectare” is a much more useful concept than “tonnes produced per hectare”. He aired concerns about the term “sustainable intensification”, which is sometimes used to justify agricultural inputs and a push in production, and identified the arbitrary nature of the assumed 70% increase in productivity that’s often cited as a way to feed the world in 2050 – a figure that he says is based on out-of-date science that’s been repeated with little scrutiny. Ben Caspar, Coordinator of the EU Sustainable Food Communication at the European Commission, also questioned the integrity of the much-touted 70% hike in productivity and the “sustainable intensification mantra”, while Bankwatch’s Natalia Kolomiets insisted there must be a drop in meat consumption to thwart the spread of intensive farms in countries in transition (from a planned economy to a market economy), such as the Ukraine.

Reality-check the global “meat rush” 1 Friends of the Earth’s Magda Stoczkiewicz alluded to her organisation’s recent report, the Meat Atlas, to reinforce the message that the last thing our over-burdened, resource-strained planet needs is for higher rates of meat production. The closing words of Slow Food International’s Anne Marie Matarrese – “...less meat, better meat...” – were a fitting vision for the future.

Consider the importance of “nutritional security” and a healthy food system “There are huge inequalities in access to food; in access to healthy and sustainable food that contributes to good-health outcomes.” Dorota Sienkiewicz, Health Equity and Policy Coherence Coordinator, European Public Health Alliance 2

Consider the importance of “nutritional security” and a healthy food system 2 We must consider the importance of “nutritional security”, as opposed to just food security; a truly sustainable food system must provide everyone with the right nutrition, not just the right number of calories. Dorota Sienkiewicz of the European Public Health Alliance devoted her entire presentation to our “upside-down food system”, which offers increased availability of food but uneven access to nutrition. Sienkiewicz claimed that diet-related illnesses (such as cardiovascular disease, some cancers, type-II diabetes and obesity) have reached pandemic proportions in Europe. In richer nations, the poorest population groups suffer the most, she claimed, because diets that are high in fats, sugar and salt are often cheaper than healthier diets, as a result of misguided agricultural subsidies. In the US, it’s thought that nearly 130,000 lives and $17 billion in medical costs could be saved each year (figures that are thought to be similar in the EU) if people ate the right amount of fruit and vegetables – but there isn’t enough fresh produce for everyone to have their 5-a-day, due to backward agricultural subsidies and illogical production systems.

Consider the importance of “nutritional security” and a healthy food system 2 Asserting the need to level good health outcomes across all stratas of society, Sienkiewicz called for nutritional security to be placed “at the heart of farming and the whole food system” to bring an end to what she termed “food poverty”. The interplay between farming methods, meat consumption and human health were alluded to throughout the day: Dr Olivier De Schutter described obesity as a “hidden cost” of intensive farming; Myrsini Tzani of the Ministry of Rural Development and Food in Greece spoke about the rise of zoonotic diseases and antibiotic-resistant bacteria as a result of intensive systems; and Dr Mary Yannakoulia of Harokopio University outlined the many benefits of Mediterranean diets, which – amongst other factors – tend not to rely heavily on meat.

Account for the costs and benefits of agriculture 3 “Citizens pay three times for their food – the retail price, the subsidies that push down the price in the first place and then cleaning up the mess caused by a broken food subsidy system.” Faustine Defossez, Senior Policy Officer: Agriculture and Bioenergy, European Environmental Bureau

Account for the costs and benefits of agriculture 3 We need to account for the costs and benefits of agriculture by repurposing subsidies and taxes so that “cheap” meat and highly processed foods reflect their true costs, and healthier foods become more affordable and widely accessible. Philip Lymbery’s book Farmageddon: The True Cost of Cheap Meat alludes, in its very title, to the need for authentic price signals in the meat we buy. This sentiment was echoed throughout the conference, with the terms “hidden costs”, “external costs” and “societal costs” referred to again and again. The truth is that over-the-counter prices of “cheap” meat are ludicrously low, given how much we pay indirectly for an unsustainable food system, and better-quality meat is – for many people, at least prohibitively expensive. As Rosita Zilli, Deputy Secretary-General of Euro Coop, said: “We need to make the ‘right’ option for consumers (eg, local, seasonal, Fair Trade) the ‘easiest’ option.”

Account for the costs and benefits of agriculture 3 So how do we do this? With a fairer, more logical framework of subsidies, taxes and policies that support sustainable farming and make unsustainable practices a less appealing option. Respectively, financial incentives and disincentives would be the most effective way to achieve this, said Zilli. Philip Lymbery also stated that policies and subsidies to support pasture- and land-based farming and bring down the cost of higher-welfare meat were crucial in the drive to create a more sustainable farming future. A similar message came from Dorota Sienkiewicz of the European Public Health Alliance, who called for an overhaul of the misguided agricultural subsidies that make certain food items artificially cheaper than others, as well as increased taxes on unhealthy products. These arguments came together in the presentation from Faustine Defossez of the European Environmental Bureau, who drew attention to the disappointing disparity between the green reform (or “greening”) we were promised in the CAP and the unproductive “green-washing” we’ve received instead.

Explore new technologies “My story...is a creative solution; it’s probably the most creative solution.” Professor Dr Mark Post, Professor and Chair of Physiology, Maastricht University 4

Explore new technologies 4 It’s time to explore new technologies to help ease our burdened food system while satiating “our taste for meat”, including research into growing cultured meat in laboratories. Occupying a position at the forefront of food science, Professor Dr Mark Post gave a fascinating account of his quest to find a viable alternative to meat as we know it. His study, which is based on harvesting stem cells from a live cow and stimulating them to bulk up and take on the form of meat, culminated in the launch of the world’s first stem-cell burger in 2013; the burger was tasted by food critics at a glitzy launch in London under the glare of the world’s media. Professor Post’s watchwords for his pioneering project were “efficiency, sustainability, mimicry”.

Explore new technologies 4 There are still significant challenges to overcome in the move towards lab-grown meat, not least the price – the famed burger was reputed to have cost around 250,000 euros to develop. But this cost is falling rapidly, and could end up in the region of 50 euros per kilo of meat in the not-too-distant future. That’s still quite a lot, but it starts to look more attractive when you factor in the reduced external costs when compared to industrially produced meat. Professor Post’s burger could be a real game-changer and “a model for the future”; using only a handful of cells from a single animal, there is the potential to create many thousands of tonnes of meat, satisfying our hunger for this age-old food stuff and easing the relentless drive for ever-intensive farming. In his own words: “This is a technology that still has to prove itself. In theory it’s possible and in theory it’s beautiful and it could be a perfect solution to many of the problems that have been identified here today.”

Reduce food waste “I think there is absolutely enormous potential for reducing food waste because so little policy intervention Europe-wide has been done in this area; an enormous number of animals are being killed and not even eaten.” Ben Caspar, Coordinator of the EU Sustainable Food Communication, DG Environment, European Commission 5

Reduce food waste 5 It’s become imperative that we reduce food waste at every stage in the farm-to-fork process. For a start, intensive farming is inherently wasteful, as we lose calories and protein by feeding leguminous crops to animals before we consume their meat; then there’s even more waste at the food-processing, retail and household stages. In his keynote speech, Dr Olivier De Schutter stated that a jawdropping 1.3 billion tonnes of food is wasted every year – a figure that he said amounts to more than half of the total volume of cereals produced in a year. This is scandalous, in a world where nearly a billion people are starving. An equally staggering game of numbers came from the European Commission’s Ben Caspar, who said that every year the equivalent of 70 million chickens in the UK are killed but never eaten – and if you scale this figure up to cover the rest of Europe and the world, it amounts to wasted meat and wasted lives on a truly unimaginable scale.

Reduce food waste 5 As a consequence, Caspar revealed that a major theme in the European Commission’s forthcoming Sustainable Food Communication will be food waste and the “complete waste of productivity” it represents, and the great potential there is to shape a more sustainable system by reducing it. Compassion’s CEO Philip Lymbery outlined what he believes are the measures society should take to feed the planet’s predicted population in 2050, both of which are inextricably tied up in the notion of food waste. He suggested that we should reduce grainfed livestock by half to feed an extra 1.3 bn and reduce food waste by half to feed another 1.35 billion – effectively rechanneling our food system’s lost calories to feed an extra 2.36 billion people. He also spoke about the idea of allowing pigs and poultry to eat food waste – no silver bullet, but a potentially powerful piece of the sustainable-farming puzzle and a lesson in recycling logic.

Beware intensive farming’s ‘nitrogen footprint’ “Nitrogen is used very inefficiently in agriculture, and when it’s lost to the environment, it contributes to many environmental issues.” Professor Dr Jan Willem Erisman, Extraordinary Professor of Integrated Nitrogen Studies and Director of the Louis Bolk Institute 6

Beware intensive farming’s ‘nitrogen footprint’ 6 Society must beware intensive farming’s “nitrogen footprint”, caused by fertilisers used on feed crops, and support pasture-based farming to reduce the intensity of grain use and the associated need for nitrogen-based fertilisers. Professor Dr Jan Willem Erisman, Extraordinary Professor of Integrated Nitrogen Studies and Director of the Louis Bolk Institute, focused exclusively in his presentation on the nitrogen-hungry nature of intensive farming – mainly due to its reliance on monocultured crops, which need large quantities of fertiliser and which are wasted by the farm animals, who convert these crops inefficiently into food for us. Although nitrogen sustains life, he explained, it creates huge problems when lost to the environment, as it is in vast quantities through intensive farming.

Beware intensive farming’s ‘nitrogen footprint’ 6 This is because fertiliser efficiency is low – for every 100kg of nitrogen fertiliser used on vegetables, only 14kg are “consumed” by humans; and for meat, this figures plummets, to 4kg. Professor Erisman went on to explain the devastating effects of excess nitrogen in our world, in the form of poor air quality, forest die-back, acidification, eutrophication, the ozone hole and global warming. According to the professor, 85% of the nitrogen in crops produced in Europe goes to animals, leaving only 15% to go directly to humans. And the fertiliser that does eventually reach human mouths is unevenly distributed across the world, with just 20% of the population “eating” 80% of the fertiliser – figures that explain the contradictory crises of obesity and malnutrition on our planet.

Beware intensive farming’s ‘nitrogen footprint’ 6 For Professor Erisman, the solutions to the nitrogen problem are fourfold: smarter diets, including eating less meat; smart extensification, which offers fewer local impacts, such as odour and unattractive landscapes; smart intensification, which includes resource efficiency and reducing waste; and closed nutrient cycles, which can promote healthy soils.

Educate and inform the public “The future is for our children… they have to know and learn about this, because one day they will have to operate sustainably.” Andrea Gavinelli, Head of Animal Welfare Unit, DG Health and Consumers, European Commission 7

Educate and inform the public 7 There is now a pressing need to educate and inform the public about sustainable food and farming; arguably, two of the most effective vehicles for this are to provide honest product labelling for adults and to instil good food habits in the younger generation. Calls for greater transparency and the effective dissemination of information reverberated throughout the conference. Slow Food International’s Anne Marie Matarrese articulated the need for food education throughout society and Andrea Gavinelli from the European Commission explained how greater access to information would “empower consumers”. Compassion’s CEO Philip Lymbery spoke of the need to ensure honest labelling, and to advise consumers on buying from the land, reducing waste and eating less meat.

Educate and inform the public 7 And in a similar vein, Rosita Zilli of Euro Coop talked about giving consumers more control through information, and promoting sustainable food items in retail outlets by increasing their accessibility and availability. As Friends of the Earth’s Magda Stoczkiewicz asserted, “eating is a political issue”; so it’s more crucial than ever that we get people making the right choices based on clear, reliable information. Andrea Gavinelli went on to explore the role of education in securing society's sustainable future. He talked about the importance of teaching our young people about the animal-welfare and human-health benefits of agricultural good practice, which will equip them with enough knowledge to make the right the food choices now and in the future.

Moderator biographies

Kriton Arsenis Kriton Arsenis has been a Member of the European Parliament for the Progressive Alliance of Socialists & Democrats (S&D) since July 2009. He is a member of the Committees on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, Fisheries and Development. He studied planning and regional development at the University of Thessaly in Greece (1996–2001) and holds a Master’s in International Development (MPA/ID) from Harvard University, The Kennedy School of Government (2001–2003). Daniela Battaglia Daniela Battaglia works in the Animal Production and Health Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), where she is responsible for activities in support of animal welfare. She coordinates the FAO’s Gateway to Farm Animal Welfare and co-produces FAOcast. Previously, Daniela was with the European Commission and has worked extensively on farm-animal and rural-development projects in Latin America, North Africa and the Middle East.

Reineke Hameleers Before taking up the position of Director of Eurogroup for Animals, Reineke was Regional Director for the Dutch Society for the Protection of Animals. She holds a Master’s degree in Arts and Sciences, and wrote her thesis on human-animal relationships. Reineke established the Netherlands’ first animal-welfare centre, delivering educational activities, rescue work and animal-health and -behaviour services. Sir David Madden Sir David served as British Ambassador in Greece from 1999 to 2004. He then served as Political Adviser to the European Union Peace-Keeping Force in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He is a senior member of St Antony’s College, Oxford, and Chair of the Development Committee of South East European Studies at Oxford (SEESOX). Sir David is a trustee of both Compassion in World Farming and The Brooke Hospital for Animals. Dil Peeling Dil is Director of Campaigns at Compassion in World Farming. He has several decades’ experience in the livestock sector, focusing on agricultural policy reform. His last role was based in Ethiopia for the UN Food and Agriculture Organization.

Speaker biographies

Ben Caspar Having recently helped draft the European Commission's Roadmap to a Resource Efficient Europe, Ben Caspar is now leading the development of the Commission's upcoming Sustainable Food Strategy, due in 2014. With a background in molecular biology, he joined the European Commission in 2002 to work on the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy and then moved on to work on the environmental labelling of products, including running the European Ecolabel scheme for four years. He is based in the Circular Economy Unit of DG Environment. Marco Contiero Marco Contiero has been the EU Policy Director on Agriculture at Greenpeace for the last eight years. Author of several reports and briefings on agricultural policies, he coordinates Greenpeace’s work at European level and provides the organisation with legal and political advice on agricultural issues. He holds a Master’s degree in European Environmental Law from the University of Amsterdam (2004) and a Master’s in International Trade Law from the University of Padua (2003). Before leading the agriculture campaign, he coordinated Greenpeace’s policy work on the adoption of the EU Regulation on chemicals (REACH) for two years. Previously, Contiero worked for the European Environmental Bureau (EEB) as a legal advisor (2004).

Faustine Defossez Faustine Defossez is the European Environmental Bureau’s (EEB) agriculture and bioenergy senior policy officer. Before joining the EEB in 2010, she worked for the European Commission in the Directorate General for Agriculture and Rural Development, on the European Food Aid programme for the most deprived. She holds a Master’s degree in European Union law from the University of Lille, France, and a Master’s degree in EU Politics from the Institute for Political Sciences in Strasbourg, France. Professor Dr Jan Willem Erisman Professor Erisman is CEO of the Louis Bolk Institute, which provides international advice and research on sustainable agriculture, nutrition and healthcare. He is also Extraordinary Professor of Integrated Nitrogen Studies at the VU University Amsterdam. He was Chair of the European Science Foundation programme Nitrogen in Europe from 2005 to 2011, and is a member of the Scientific Committee of the International Geosphere Biosphere Program. His recent work has focused on optimising food production and energy use while minimising the environmental impacts from increased nitrogen cycling.

Andrea Gavinelli Andrea is a veterinarian and is currently Head of the Animal Welfare Unit in the Health and Consumers Directorate General of the European Commission. Since 2001, he has been an active member of the Working Group on Animal Welfare of the World Animal Health Organization (OIE), and he is a member of specific working groups at international level with EU trading partners. Andrea is on the editorial board of the FAO Gateway to Farm Animal Welfare. Andrea coordinated the first web consultation of the Commission on Animal Welfare and the first two European-wide surveys on the attitudes of European consumers towards animal welfare. He understands that animal welfare is an important issue for EU citizens. Natalia Kolomiets Natalia Kolomiets works at the National Ecological Centre of Ukraine, Bankwatch Network, as a specialist in environmental protection and community development. In particular, Natalia assists affected communities in their struggle against the violation of citizens' rights related to industrial farming and land acquisition practices. She provides expertise to help locals scope out environmental problems, file cases and build communication with the state authorities, companies, CSOs and other stakeholders, and helps with community capacity-building. She earned her MSc degree in Environmental Studies from the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Ukraine, and her MSc in Social Studies from Lund University, Sweden.

Nicos Kouyialis Nicos Kouyialis was born in Nicosia on March 30, 1967. He studied in the USA and holds a BSc and MSc in Electrical Engineering from North Carolina State University (NCSU). He has been the Chairman of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), UK, since 2006, and is an elected member of the IET Council. He also served as chairman of the Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE), UK. Until 2011, he held the position of the General Organizer of the European Party of Cyprus, while in the same year he was elected as the Vice President of the party, a position that he still holds today. Mr Kouyialis took office as Minister of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment on March 1, 2013. He is married and has three children. Philip Lymbery Philip has been CEO of Compassion in World Farming since 2005 and was Compassion’s campaigns director throughout the 1990s – a period of extraordinary success, including EU-wide bans on veal crates and battery cages. Philip’s book Farmageddon: The True Cost of Cheap Meat, which was co-authored with Isabel Oakeshott and explores the devastation caused by factory farming, was published by Bloomsbury last month to widespread critical acclaim. The Independent newspaper called it “an unforgettable indictment of the new hyper-industrialised agriculture originating in the USA which is now spreading around the world.”

Anne Marie Matarrese Anne Marie is a PhD candidate at the University of Leicester, where she is researching the political representation of animals with the support of the Centre for Animals and Social Justice (www.casj.org.uk). She is an animal-welfare policy advisor and former communications officer for the NGO Slow Food International. She received an MA in Environmental Politics from Keele University and a BA in Political Science from LUISS University, Rome. Professor Dr Mark Post Professor Post is a medical doctor who has taught at the universities of Utrecht and Eindhoven, and at the medical schools of both Harvard University and Dartmouth College in the US. Since January 2004, he has been Chair of Physiology and Vice Dean of Biomedical Technology at Maastricht University. He researches the engineering of tissues for medical applications and for food. Professor Post has developed cultured beef from bovine stem cells in order to supplement, and transform reliance on, meat from livestock. The first cultured beef burger was launched in London in August 2013.

Dr Olivier De Schutter Dr De Schutter has been the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food since 2008. He teaches international human rights law, European Union law and legal theory at the Université Catholique de Louvain and the College of Europe, both of which are in Belgium, and is a visiting professor at Columbia University. During his two terms of office as the Special Rapporteur, he has been outspoken in seeking global reform to support smallholder farmers, reduce poverty, ensure fair tax and trade systems and support agro-ecological farming. He has earned a legion of admirers from his commitment to ethical principles and courage in addressing global inequalities. Dorota Sienkiewicz Dorota Sienkiewicz has Master’s degrees in psychology from Polish and Dutch universities and subsequently specialised in International Public Health. She is the European Public Health Alliance’s Coordinator for Health Equity and Policy Coherence, focusing on health challenges from a social and economic perspective and on the impact of EU policies on health equity in Europe and beyond. She works on advocacy and policy issues related to conditions for early-life development (children’s health), public-health aspects of agriculture, food policy and non-communicable diseases, inequalities, poverty and social exclusion.

Magda Stoczkiewicz Magda has been Director of Friends of the Earth Europe since March 2008, and has 13 years’ senior-management experience in non-profit organisations. She has advanced knowledge of campaigning on environmental, social and governance issues as well as of human-rights and development aspects, coupled with 14 years’ experience of the intricacies of the EU policy-making framework. Magda is Polish and graduated from the Jagiellonian University in Krakow with an MA, afterwards continuing with post-degree studies in public relations and European affairs. She is one of the founders of the environmental organisation in Central Eastern Europe – CEE Bankwatch Network – where she worked for 12 years in Poland, Amsterdam and Brussels. Professor Athanasios Tsaftaris Professor Tsaftaris is the Minister of Rural Development and Food in Greece. He is a Professor of Genetics and Plant Breeding at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, a Member of the Board of Directors for the Centre for Research and Technology Hellas (CE.R.T.H.), Director of the Institute of Applied Biosciences and Chair of the Department of Genetics and Plant Breeding at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. Professor Tsaftaris holds two doctorate degrees – one in the area of Quantitative Genetics and Plant Breeding and the other in the area of Plant Molecular Biology and Biotechnology. He is active on many committees and in many scientific organisations and associations in Greece, the EU, OECD and the UN.

Myrsini Tzani Myrsini is a graduate of the School of Veterinary Medicine at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, and has completed postgraduate studies at the National School of Public Health in Athens. From 1995 to 2002, she worked as a private veterinarian for pets. Since 2002, she has been working at the General Veterinary Directorate of the Hellenic Ministry of Rural Development and Food at the Department of Zoonoses, part of the Animal Health Directorate. She is a national expert on zoonotic salmonella, and since January 2012 has been the Head of the Department of Zoonoses and the focal point of the EFSA Task Forces for Zoonoses Data Collection, for Antimicrobial Resistance and for Foodborne Outbreaks. Dr Mary Yannakoulia Dr Mary Yannakoulia is Assistant Professor of Nutrition and Eating Behaviour in the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece. She has been involved on many projects as a principal investigator, co-investigator and researcher; part of national or international collaborations, these projects investigate factors that influence human eating behaviors and people’s adherence to interventions. Last year, she represented Greece in the High Level Group on Nutrition and Physical Activity of the European Commission.

Rosita Zilli Rosita Zilli is Deputy Secretary-General at Euro Coop, the European Community of Consumer Co-operatives. In this capacity, she is in charge of following general co-operative issues as well as sustainability policy dossiers. In this area, she co-ordinates the meetings of the Euro Coop Sustainability Working Group, which groups people in charge of the environmental and sustainability portfolio within the different consumer co-operatives. Rosita Zilli holds a degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy from the University of Trieste (Italy), and prior to her post at Euro Coop, she worked in the international co-operation field in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Please note that all speaker presentations can be accessed here.

With thanks to: The Hellenic Presidency of the Council of the European Union And our speakers, moderators and participants. You made Averting Farmageddon an incredible event. We look forward to working with you in the future.

And special congratulations to Dr Olivier De Schutter A champion of compassionate and fair food for all Winner of the inaugural Compassion in World Farming Food Revolutionary Award 2014

Compassion in World Farming is proud to be part of the sustainable-farming community, accelerating the transition towards a global food system that nourishes people and the planet. Averting Farmageddon: Sustainable Food for All was a truly pivotal moment for us, as we look to influence policy in Europe and beyond.

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