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Contact: Jac Niessen
jac.niessen@wur.nl
31-031-748-5003
Elsevier

First global conference on food security

A multifaceted problem: How can the world feed its children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren in a future facing an ever-growing global population, poverty, growing scarcities of drinking water and agricultural land, and of course the elusive climate change? And at what price? Nobody knows the answer. For this reason, Wageningen University and scientific publisher Elsevier have taken the initiative to invite six hundred scientists from 65 countries to attend the first global conference on food security in search of solutions within their own field. The Global Food Security conference will be held September 29 -- October 2 in Noordwijkerhout, the Netherlands.

Members of the media are warmly invited to attend (please register; see below)

Researchers from a range of scientific fields will present and share their knowledge and views on food production and access to food during the Global Food Security conference. The pros and cons of clashing environmental, economic or social objectives and results will also be discussed. The conference is supported by Elsevier journal Global Food Security.

The conference is a mix of plenary and parallel sessions, including opportunities for discussion and interaction (during so-called workshop cafés, for example). It will be chaired by Prof. Martin van Ittersum and Prof. Ken Giller from Wageningen University. Keynote speakers will focus on themes such as: 'Where we stand in understanding global food security' (Louise Fresco, University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands) or 'Achieving global food security and environmental sustainability' (David Tilman, University of Minnesota -- 'the world's number one ecologist'). Other renowned keynote speakers include Chris Barrett from Cornell University and Meine van Noordwijk, World Agroforestry Centre, Indonesia. In parallel sessions, researchers will discuss themes such as local and national policy, the role of international investors in land and agriculture, urban agriculture, growing food in and on the water, insect farming, food wastage, quality marks, irrigation, agro-biodiversity, food crises and the atlas that is being compiled to show the geographical differences between the current and maximum feasible yields from agricultural land throughout the world. The workshops will focus on questions such as: Should we choose to preserve biodiversity or tackle world hunger? Why does Africa's agriculture lag behind that of Asia? Land scarcity or land grabbing?

In the afternoon of Wednesday October 2, all the views and information will be collated and discussed with the panel, which includes Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Lilianne Ploumen.

Some of the Global Food Security conference highlights include (For the complete program, go to: http://www.globalfoodsecurityconference.com)

Sunday, September 29

18.00 - 19.00 Where we stand in understanding global food security, Louise Fresco, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Monday, September 30

8.45 - 9.15 The global food security challenge: Constraints, consequences and opportunities ahead, Chris Barrett, Cornell University, USA

9.15 - 9.45 Achieving Global Food Security and Environmental Sustainability, David Tilman, University of Minnesota, USA

10.30 - 11.00 Internalizing externalities of decision making in multifunctional landscapes: Rewards, rules and reciprocity, Meine van Noordwijk, World Agroforestry Centre, Indonesia

Tuesday, October 1

8.30 - 9.00 Strengthening the engagement of food and health systems to improve nutrition security: Innovative and equitable solutions to address malnutrition, Jessica Fanzo, Columbia University, USA

9.00 - 9.30 Lost harvest, wasted food, Tristram Stuart, Author & Founder of 'Feeding the 5000', UK

Wednesday, October 2

14.00 - 16.30 Global Food Security in 2050? Conclusions and take home message

1. Chair: Ken Giller, Wageningen University

2. Panel comments and discussion

3. Plenary discussion with panellists

16.30 - 17.30 Conclusion and take home messages

Follow the conference on Twitter #gfs2013

Members of the media are welcome throughout the conference, but we draw particular attention to the final debate and concluding remarks Wednesday afternoon, October 2, 2013.

Location: NH Conference Centre Leeuwenhorst, Langelaan 3, 2211 XT Noordwijkerhout, the Netherlands. Tel. +31 (0)252 378888

More information is available on http://www.globalfoodsecurityconference.com and guests may register with Jac Niessen, science information officer at Wageningen UR, tel. +31 (0)317 485003, jac.niessen@wur.nl or Erik Toussaint, manager of the communication department of the Plant Sciences Group, Wageningen UR, tel. +31 (0)6 5156 5949, erik.toussaint@wur.nl.

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