The inaugural Asia-Pacific edition of the international Sustainable Foods Summit series will highlight topical issues related to food ingredients; organic market potential; best-practice marketing; and food fraud, authenticity and traceability.
Scheduled to take place over three days in Singapore in late November, the region’s first-ever executive summit on eco-labels and sustainability aims to address important issues for the sustainable foods sector globally, discussing pressing questions such as:
- How do organic, Fair Trade and other eco-labelling systems help to advance sustainability?
- With the proliferation of eco-labels worldwide, what is the likelihood of agreeing on a single sustainability standard for food products?
- What are some of the practical applications of sustainability metrics?
- What advances are occurring in sustainable ingredients, and in the formulation, production and marketing of sustainable food and beverages?
Each SFS is designed to engage key stakeholders in the food industry, including food and beverage manufacturers; suppliers of ingredients and raw materials; packaging companies; retailers and distributors; certification agencies; industry bodies and NGOs; researchers and academics; investors and financiers.
It brings together members of many of the most influential food-industry organisations dealing with sustainability and eco-labelling across the Asia-Pacific region and beyond.
SFS Asia-Pacific program and themes
The SFS Asia-Pacific program is divided into four dedicated conference-style sessions and a practical training workshop, scheduled over three days.
Session 1: Sustainability developments
Key content in Session 1 will include:
- ways the food and ag industries can address their various negative impacts on people and the environment;
the role of soil fertility on maintaining sustainable food systems;
- the adoption of sustainable seafood production systems in Asia;
- the use of life-cycle analysis to measure and reduce the environmental impacts of food production;
- why Bhutan leads the world in sustainability credentials; and
- how a leading South-East Asian supermarket chain is surmounting the challenges of sustainability.
The session will end with a discussion, led by the featured speakers, on major obstacles to sustainable development in the food industry.
Session 2: Organic market potential
This session will explore the potential of the organic food market in Asia, which claims 60 percent of the world’s consumers but lags significantly behind most regions, including the US, Canada, the UK, Scandinavia, Europe and Australia, when it comes to organic food production and sales.
It will also look at export opportunities for Asia’s organic food producers; share insights from industry pioneers in this emerging market; look at recent research on organic-food consumers; and provide an update on the burgeoning Chinese market, Asia’s largest and fastest growing market for organic foods. Case studies illustrating the challenges of setting up organic food enterprises in Asia and of building internal markets will be examined.
Session 2 will conclude with a discussion on how best to encourage organic food production and consumption across the Asian region.
Session 3: Marketing best practices
Unless Asian organic and sustainable food brands and retailers develop more effective marketing strategies, many contend, Asia’s domestic demand for these products will continue to lag behind that of other regions such as Scandinavia, the EU countries, the Antipodes and North America.
In this session the focus will be on marketing issues related to sustainable foods, illustrated by examples of sustainable-food trendsetters and international organic-brand success stories.
Session 3 will highlight approaches that encourage purchases of sustainable food products and responsible consumption, and will cover the impact of packaging on the successful marketing of sustainable foods and beverages; and new research on ethical consumerism in Asia.
Session 4: Ingredients for sustainability
This session will focus on key developments in sustainable ingredients including.
- the use of ancient grains in modern food products;
- the use of natural flavourings for sustainability;
- Fair Trade ingredients suitable for use in food and beverage applications;
- an update on sustainable sourcing; and
- a case study of a company developing plant-based seafood products using novel ingredients.
The session’s featured speakers will lead discussion on the evolution of sustainable ingredients and look at developments on the horizon.
Workshop: Food fraud and authenticity
It is estimated that one in every 10 foods is adulterated or mislabelled due to vulnerabilities in global supply chains. A series of scandals surrounding food fraud, such as falsely labelled food products has highlighted this growing and costly issue.
This workshop has been designed to help companies mitigate food-fraud risks and set up better control mechanisms and traceability in their supply chains.
The workshop will include an introduction to:
- various types of food fraud and how they impact human health, the environment, consumer confidence and commerce.
- the supply chain for modern food products, including ‘vulnerability spots’ for food fraud;
- existing control methods in food supply chains and their limitations, illustrated by recent food-fraud case studies,
- measures to improve traceability in supply chains; and
- food authentication methods.
Experts will offer practical advice to operators on the analytical techniques and methods most suitable for specific tests and product groups, and recommendations on strengthening supply chains and improving transparency.
For a detailed program outline, visit the official SMS Asia-Pacific website.
The Asia-Pacific Sustainable Foods Summit, organised by Ecovia Intelligence (formerly known as the Organic Monitor), is one of an international series of Sustainable Foods Summits that focuses on leading issues impacting the food industry faces with regard to sustainability and ‘eco-labels’: organic, Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance and the like.
Other regional editions of the Sustainable Foods Summit are scheduled to take place in Latin America (third edition, 18-20 September, São Paulo, Brazil), North America (eighth edition, 30-31 Jan, San Francisco, California) and Europe (10th edition, 14-15 June, Amsterdam, the Netherlands). Click here for further details.
The seventh North American edition on the Sustainable Foods Summit, held in San Francisco from 18-20 January 2016, highlighted sustainable food systems, food ingredients, traceability, waste impacts and sustainable finance. Check out this short video about SFS 2016: North America.
Keeping it climate-neutral
Ensuring that the Sustainable Foods Summit is a climate-neutral event, the organisers have joined forces with Soil & More to monitor the carbon emissions of the summit. These will be determined by calculating the carbon and greenhouse gases and offset by investing in soil composting projects.
For further information on Soil & More and its work on soil fertility and sustainability, visit the official Soil & More website.
Registration and more information
The official summit venue is the Marina Mandarin Singapore on Raffles Boulevard. For venue information, click here.
Flexible pricing options allow you to register for one or two days of the conference, with or without the workshop component. Standard fees range from US$699 to US$1,299, and include networking meals, breaks and the summit drinks reception.
Special rates are available for academics, groups and those who register early. Earlybird registrations (10-15 percent discount on full fees) close on 15 September.
Proceedings of this year’s Europe and North America Sustainable Foods Summits are also available for a fee; to order either or both, contact the SFS organisation.
To register for SFS Asia-Pacific, visit the online registration page.