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May 3, 2021 Issues & Insights

Virtual dialogues offer insight to UN Food Systems Summit

The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association and Nature Conservancy of Canada hosted three virtual summit dialogues last week, in anticipation of the United Nations Food Systems Summit.

With the theme Grazing Livestock: Building Sustainable Protein Supply Chains, the dialogues explored three main topics:

  1. Nature-based solutions for sustainable production;
  2. Sustainable consumption (what that means and looks like); and
  3. Bridging the gap between nature-based production practices and sustainable consumption.

The events brought together a diverse set of stakeholders for solutions-oriented discussions on sustainable production and consumption. Each session held breakout conversations with producers, academia, supply chain, NGOs, and federal and provincial policymakers.

The first session heard from Anne Mottet, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, and Canadian researchers Dr. Raf Otfinowski and Dr. Christian Artuso on the linkages between livestock, natural ecosystems and producers. The second session heard from Dr. Kim Ominski, Dr. Danielle Battram, Dr. Ben Bohrer and Dana McCauley on livestock’s role in the food system, the importance of protein in a diet, food waste and consumer trends. The final day heard from sustainability experts Dr. Tim McAllister and Townsend Bailey, McDonald’s, as well as sheep, bison and beef producers and associations.

Insights and feedback gathered from the sessions will be analyzed and provided to the United Nations prior to the Food Systems Summit this fall.

Want to get involved? The UN Food Systems Summit (UNFSS) is holding Producer Public Forums across six continents. The North and South America forum is taking place Wednesday, May 5 and will be an opportunity for Canadian beef producers to learn what solutions the UNFSS is proposing and participate directly in the conversation. 

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