In Paul Polman’s article on World Food Day 2017, he writes:
“After steadily declining for 10 years, global hunger is on the rise again — affecting 815 million people in 2016. In a world of plenty, the fact that 1 in 9 go to bed hungry is a stark reminder of the failures of our food system. It is also an urgent call to action.”
Besides hunger are of course all of the other complex and interrelated challenges that come along with feeding our planet: malnutrition, climate change, environmental sustainability, economic development, political instablity and migration (the theme of this year’s World Food Day) — to name just a few.
While these problems may seem insurmountable, at TFF we push ourselves to see them as opportunities. We believe that it really is possible for the world to develop a new food system that regenerates our world’s precious resources, that revitalizes our communities, that improves nutrition, and ensures we meet SDG 2 — Achieving Zero Hunger.
Not all the ideas we need to do this have been developed yet. Not all the technologies we need have been developed yet. It’s going to take an unprecedented level of innovation, as well radical collaboration across geographies, disciplines, ideologies and generations.
At TFF, we are focused on mobilizing the next generation to take action to develop real, tangible solutions feed 9+ billion people in 2050. Why the next generation? Because it’s our future that’s at stake.
Over the past 5 years, we’ve engaged and empowered more than 8000 young people in 130+ countries, and have catalyzed the creation of 35 game-changing startups that tackle food security.
Some of our success stories include:
- Fruiti-Cycle: (Uganda) sells a refrigeration attachment for bicycles and motorcycles, bringing the cold supply chain to farmers in rural, local communities.
- Unibiome: (Bangladesh, India, France) creates microbes to give fermented food products a higher nutritional content.
- Kulisha: (Kenya, USA) collects organic waste to be used as insect feed, then processes insects into sustainable fishmeal.
- Ligno Flava: (Indonesia) utilizes natural fermentation to extract vanillin flavoring from coconut husks and cacao pods, bringing a competitive flavoring agent to the natural flavorings market.
- Cultivando Futuro: (Colombia) helps farmers manage their crops through an online portal for farmers and buyers that utlizes real-time market data.
- KinoSol: (USA) decreases post-harvest food loss through an affordable solar dehydrator and worldwide partner network.
- FoPo Food Powder: (Philippines and Germany) collects unused or wasted foods and turns them into a shelf-stable food powder.
- Biteback: (Indonesia) creates insect-based, sustainable alternative to palm oil.
- Agrosmart: (Brazil) improves sustainability and productivity for smallholders through data and precision agriculture.
Through our work with young entrepreneurs and innovators around the world, we have seen firsthand that the next generation posess unique attributes — “superhero” skills if you will — that can be used to tackle the world’s biggest challenges: they are curious, open, experimental and unafraid to uproot the status quo. They’re tech savvy, connected and masters at building relationships and communities that matter. And, most importantly, they are deeply passionate about making a difference.
The members of our TFF tribe are working together to develop exciting innovations and startups that are based on their values which emphasize transparency over secrecy, collaboration over competition, and empathy and authenticity throughout life and business.
And this is just the beginning!
The good news is that we now have access to a wealth of exciting technologies and platforms that allow anyone, anywhere to connect and collaborate with each other. The power to create change is no longer limited to large corporations or countries, but is in the hands of individuals all around the world.
If we continue to support the next generation, and allow their unique approach innovation and collaboration to happen more often and more meaningfully, our world can benefit from a level of creativity and progress that staggers the imagination!
Today, for World Food Day, it is important that we reflect on how much we still need to do to reach zero hunger and address the world’s food and nutrition challenges.
It’s also the chance to step up and answer this important call to action. It’s our chance to dream bigger and go further than ever before.
We are gearing up to announce the details for the next edition of our TFF Global Challenge soon. We invite you to take part in this amazing experience and join our community of all-star impact-makers! By signing up, you’ll get access to the tools, mentors and funds you need to turn your big ideas into real solutions. And, you’ll have the time of your life.
We can’t wait to work with you on one of the most important topics affecting our future…. to find the solutions of tomorrow, today!
With dedication to food security and the next generation,
Christine Gould, Founder and CEO, Thought For Food Foundation