EVENTS – World leading thinker on international food systems coming to Wellington

9 August 2016

Jason Clay is senior vice president of the World Wildlife Fund in the United States. His 2010 TED Talk “How big brands can help save biodiversity” has had more than 40,000 views. He will be speaking at an SBN event on September 14.

Jason Clay came from a small farm. He trained as an academic expert in anthropology and nutrition. He has since applied his thinking and experience to the practical problem of feeding the world equitably. 

One of his major insights is that effective control over much of the global food system is now consolidated with just a few firms. This requires NGOs and governments to engage with them. That is our best chance to shift the global food system onto a more sustainable and equitable path. 

He says: “Our goal is to figure out how to produce more with less land, less water and less pollution, so we won’t be the only species left living on this planet.”

“And WWF’s data suggests that we are already living at 1.5 planets right now. What this means is that what is more sustainable today will not be tomorrow, and will actually be a real problem if it persists to 2050.”

Jason will be taking part in sustainable business events around the country during his visit. This includes a forum open to SBN members free of charge at Adam Auditorium, Wellington on September 14.

Emily Dowding-Smith is SBN’s project lead for Restorative, with a particular focus on food issues. Jason’s visit ties in perfectly with the work SBN is doing in relation to New Zealand’s food system and also shifting the markets through supply chains. “I’m interested to hear from Jason about the biggest trends that New Zealand food business and agribusiness should be paying attention to.  What is the link between the global food system and the local and regional systems which are the backbone of the New Zealand food system?”

SBN’s work cuts across this, convening the National Good Food Network, working to unite healthy ethical food businesses with organisations providing healthy food for those in need.

SBN is also developing a new nationwide sustainable and ethical procurement system. This will provide progressive food businesses with greater access to big business supply chains. It will give larger business greater insight and influence over their purchasing. This will make it easier to make ethical and sustainable choices.

And SBN has undertaken some preliminary research into pre-consumer food waste. This will help us define the opportunities to radically reduce it in the coming years. 

Together these projects will help stimulate the adoption of a healthy, sustainable and ethical food culture in New Zealand.  

Emily said: “It’s a real coup having Jason here. He’s an outstanding speaker with real insight into how communities and business can benefit from the changes we urgently need.”

If you would like to come to this event, click here.