October 30, 2017

Big Ideas and Emerging Innovations

A sow and her piglets walk in the snow on a pig farm in Thame, near Oxford, southern England. REUTERS/ Eddie Keogh

Global Food and Security Symposium 2018: Mark Your Calendars and Engage the Next Generation
Mark your calendars for the 2018 Global Food Security Symposium to be held March 21 and 22, 2018 in Washington, DC!
Do you know of a student who is interested in shaping new ideas for food security and agricultural development? Encourage them to apply now to join the 2018 Next Generation Student Delegation. Applications are due on or before Sunday, November 5.

The OECD issued a report pushing for wealthier nations to target more of their aid to improving statistical systems in developing countries. The agency believes that the lack of reliable data makes it difficult to measure the impact of development cooperation and where to focus future investments.
Ripe.io, a start-up at the forefront of creating a blockchain solution for our food system, was a recent participant at The Mixing Bowl’s FOOD IT: Fork to Farm. According to Raja, their CEO, the blockchain of food simplifies the challenging task of aggregating information from a multitude of actors by providing for one-to-many data integration and process orchestration among participants.
Scientists have used a new gene-editing technique to create pigs that can keep their bodies warmer, burning more fat to produce leaner meat. These pigs would be less expensive to raise and would suffer less in cold weather. This could save farmers millions of dollars in heating and feeding costs, as well as prevent millions of piglets from suffering and dying in cold weather.
Scientists attempt to isolate which chemical compounds contribute to specific flavors, and connect those to how the cattle were raised. Knowing why these distinct flavours exist should eventually have practical benefits for both producers and consumers. Many consumers already express a preference for mild, ultratender Canadian beef or tougher, stronger-flavoured European-style beef.
Centroamericano, a new variety of coffee plant, may be the coolest thing in brewing: a tree that can withstand the effects of climate change. Shifting climates could spell disaster for coffee so scientists are racing to develop more tenacious strains of one of the world’s most beloved beverages. To cope with the effects of climate change, farmers may need to also adopt other agricultural practices.


The Global Food and Agriculture Program aims to inform the development of US policy on global agricultural development and food security by raising awareness and providing resources, information, and policy analysis to the US Administration, Congress, and interested experts and organizations.

The Global Food and Agriculture Program is housed within the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, an independent, nonpartisan organization that provides insight – and influences the public discourse – on critical global issues. The Council on Global Affairs convenes leading global voices and conducts independent research to bring clarity and offer solutions to challenges and opportunities across the globe. The Council is committed to engaging the public and raising global awareness of issues that transcend borders and transform how people, business, and governments engage the world.

Support for the Global Food and Agriculture Program is generously provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


1,000 Days Blog, 1,000 Days

Africa Can End Poverty, World Bank

Agrilinks Blog

Bread Blog, Bread for the World

Can We Feed the World Blog, Agriculture for Impact

Concern Blogs, Concern Worldwide

Institute Insights, Bread for the World Institute

End Poverty in South Asia, World Bank

Global Development Blog, Center for Global Development

The Global Food Banking Network

Harvest 2050, Global Harvest Initiative

The Hunger and Undernutrition Blog, Humanitas Global Development

International Food Policy Research Institute News, IFPRI

International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center Blog, CIMMYT

ONE Blog, ONE Campaign

One Acre Fund Blog, One Acre Fund

Overseas Development Institute Blog, Overseas Development Institute

Oxfam America Blog, Oxfam America

Preventing Postharvest Loss, ADM Institute

Sense & Sustainability Blog, Sense & Sustainability

WFP USA Blog, World Food Program USA


| By Millicent Yeboah-Awudzi

Next Generation 2018 - Dreams of Change

Our 12th post in the Next Generation blog series is by Millicent Yeboah-Awudzi, PhD candidate in applied plant science at Louisiana State University.