Towards a sustainable, responsible and efficient livestock sector—Jimmy Smith at the Berlin Global Forum for Food and Agriculture

ILRI Director General Jimmy Smith served on a panel at the kick-off event for Berlin’s Global Forum for Food and Agriculture (photo credit: ILRI/Susan MacMillan).

Kick-off event at Berlin’s tenth annual Global Forum for Food and Agriculture, Jan 2018 (photo credit: ILRI/Susan MacMillan).

This year’s GFFA in Berlin addressed
Shaping the Future of Livestock—Sustainably, Responsibly, Efficiently

The Global Forum for Food and Agriculture (GFFA), held annually in Berlin, had its tenth anniversary this year, from 18 to 20 Jan 2018. The forum is an international annual conference on the future of the global agri-food industry organized and hosted by Germany’s Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) in cooperation with GFFA Berlin e.V., the Senate of Berlin and Messe Berlin GmbH. Politicians, business people, scientists and members of civil society all take part in discussions of topics shaping agricultural policy.

This year the focus of the GFFA was livestock, specifically, how the future of livestock can be shaped to be more sustainable, responsible and efficient.

The forum’s ten expert panels this year covered a wide range of topics: 1 How livestock can help the world meet its Sustainable Development Goals; 2 Implementing animal welfare laws; 3 Africa’s livestock potential; 4 Alternatives in livestock feeding; 5 Solutions to challenges in the consumption of foods of animal origin; 6 Sustainable solutions for the livestock sector; 7 The climate, efficiency and welfare challenges of animal husbandry; 8 The contributions of Asian and Eastern European livestock farms and industries to global food security; 9 Antimicrobial resistance in Europe and beyond; and 10 More sustainable protein feed.

A delegation from the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) was involved in several of this year’s GFFA events, including the following.

(1) 18 Jan 2018: Kick-off event, with ILRI Director General Jimmy Smith serving on the panel.

(2) 18 Jan 2018: An expert panel organized by the Swiss Federal Office for Agriculture and the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock (GASL) on the topic of ‘Food of animal origin 2030: Solutions to consumption driven challenges’, with ILRI Assistant Director General Shirley Tarawali giving the keynote presentation.

(3) 19 Jan 2018: An expert panel, ‘Sustainable solutions for the livestock sector: The time is ripe!’, co-hosted by Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development BMZ, the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), ILRI, the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock (GASL) and the Livestock Global Alliance (LGA).

(4) 19 Jan 2018: A High-Level Panel of the European Commission on ‘The future of livestock production’, with ILRI Director General Jimmy Smith serving as a member of the panel.

(5) 20 Jan 2018: The Berlin Agriculture Ministers’ Conference, the world’s largest meeting of agriculture ministers and the political highlight of the conference. ILRI Director General Jimmy Smith served as a technical expert at this ministerial conference, which produced a communiqué formulating the common position of 69 agriculture ministers on the future of livestock, the recommendations of which are now being incorporated in international discourse on livestock and agricultural policies.

In addition to Smith, the four other members of the panel that kicked off the GFFA on 18 Jan 2018 were Blairo Maggi, Brazilian Minister of Agriculture; Peter Bleser, parliamentary state secretary at the German Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) and master farmer; Julius Lwegaba, a representative of Welthungerhilfe (World Hunger Aid), a German non-governmental aid agency, Uganda; and Peter Giørtz-Carlsen, executive vice president and chief commercial officer Europe of Arla Foods.

Jimmy Smith prepares to help open the 3-day GFFA

ILRI’s Jimmy Smith made some of the following points in the panel discussion.

Read the whole article on the ILRI News blog.