As an Australian that has grown up in “the land of plenty” with wide-open spaces, and exporting food to the world, the idea of people going hungry or countries running out of arable land was far from my imagination.
With a 35 year background in animal nutrition, that grew over time to specialize in pigs, I clearly remember 2 events that drive me as a “feed the world” guy. One was a VIV Conference in Bangkok 15 years ago, and the other the birth and growing journey of my grand-daughters. The Bangkok conference was my first, very large conference, and my first in Asia. I had that life-changing moment when I truly noted that there is a LOT of people crammed onto this Globe, and that many of them are poor and undernourished. I had become a comfortable 1st world professional in a rich country, and had only read about the needs of the so-called 3rd world. That moment on a very crowded train in Bangkok changed me forever into knowing that improving farm food conversion and use of scarce resources to feed a massive global population was a critical imperative, not just a nice to have! All nutritionists and animal production specialists, when they can take a world view of their trade, will see the importance of their day to day work in a new context.
With that new world view, and valuing my nutritionist trade even more, the birth of my granddaughters was the 2nd “aha” moment. My older generation of middle class, 1st world professionals, will never go hungry before we die. My 3 year old granddaughter Annabelle and children her age will be the ones fighting that global battle in real-time, not just in some talking point to a pig seminar. Back in Bangkok in 2018, so the full circle, as a DSM speaker, I could personally and passionately challenge the audience of swine professionals: “the statistic that 9.3 Billion people will need to be fed globally by 2050 is truly sobering. It’s not going to affect me, but it will affect Annabelle and all kids her age .. so Annabelles Rule: We need to strive for Swine Production Systems that meet the needs of the present, without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.
I am now working for a company that not only cares about Sustainable Animal Production outcomes, but has the market power to be a leader and major influencer in this space. I feel privileged to be part of the journey to feeding the world, and the WE MAKE IT POSSIBLE is an important part of that process. Enzymes for efficient ingredient use; Vitamins and Hy-D to reduce sow wastage and reduce stillbirth losses; our full Eubiotic suite for improved gut functionality and improved health outcomes; as well as direct action via circular economics and other precision farming initiatives. At DSM, we strongly believe in sustainable food systems and that the livestock industry can transform itself from within to be a part of the solution. We want to play a key role in this transformation and work at species and country level, with our partners, to provide tangible and actionable solutions to create brighter lives for all.
If not us, who?
If not now, when?
So, let’s make it possible!
Senior Swine lead, APAC
PS: this is one of my reasons for caring about Sustainability ... my granddaughter Annabelle.