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The Future of Food – subject of this year’s City Food Lecture

Published on: 9 March 2020

This year’s City Food Lecture, organised by the seven food-linked City Livery companies, attracted an invited audience of almost 700 people to the Guildhall recently.

Professor Louise Fresco, President of Wageningen University in Holland, one of the world’s top life science institutions, delivered the lecture on ‘The Future of Food’. Speaking without notes she captivated the audience.

Given the current environment the future of meat consumption featured prominently. Speaking about the various challenges to meat-eating at present the Professor referred to the current interest in vegetarianism and alternative protein products pointing out some of the facts seemingly being ignored in the current debate. Of particular note were: 

  • Land in large parts of the world was not suitable for cropping but more appropriate for pasture growth and animal production. 
  • Grassland is the best way to capture carbon – much more efficient than trees and forests.
  • Animal-sourced protein provides concentrated amounts of nutrients in a more efficient way for us to consume than plant protein sources.
HRH The Princess Royal with Professor Fresco and the Dutch Ambassador at the CFL 2020.
HRH The Princess Royal with Professor Fresco and the Dutch Ambassador at the CFL 2020.

Her conclusion was that ‘we definitely do need meat’, although not necessarily in the same quantities as at present. 

A lively panel session followed and, in delivering her vote of thanks, Past Master, HRH the Princess Royal, emphasised the importance of food education at all levels paying tribute to all concerned for organising a highly successful evening.

To view the lecture, go to the CFL2020 website.

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