16 January 2015
ESM's Michael Obersteiner will make a keynote presentation on Friday January 16 at 14:00 entitled "Food System Resilience: Adaptation or Transformation?
Below is an overview of what will be discussed at the meeting.
Global production systems for food and other raw materials are facing a formidable challenge with many dimensions. We need to feed 9 billion people by mid-century and satisfy an ever-growing demand for renewable raw materials. This over-arching challenge must be met:
Companies around the world are already finding themselves looking for alternatives to their traditional ways of managing supply chains and sourcing raw materials. In the past, alternative suppliers were readily available and excess capacity in the bioeconomy allowed supply to smooth out demand fluctuations. Companies did not need to think much about where they were sourcing from and how those products were produced. Today, whole clusters of suppliers frequently succumb to disruptions of a previously unknown scale. Often, alternatives are unavailable even at global level. Traditional models are evidently failing.
To enable rural areas to take advantage of opportunities to grow rural enterprises and to create jobs, building new resilient supply chains is key. In doing so, one member of the chain stands out: Farmers in developing and emerging market countries. There is no way that we can hope to overcome the challenges without the help of the most critical yet often weakest member of the supply chain. Farmers hold the key to our common future because they offer the greatest untapped potential: Decades of neglect have left them producing far below their potential and far more vulnerable then necessary. Building resilient supply chains starts at the root.
Last edited: 27 August 2015
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
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