This year’s fifth annual Good Food Summit was successfully held from September 10 to 12. Since its inception in 2017, the annual Good Food Summit is the highlight of the GFF’s annual activities, gathering sustainable food innovators from around the world to meet, learn from, and inspire each other. The fifth Good Food Summit was supported by the UN Food Systems Summit, UN agencies, and other parties. A total of 63 delegates from nine countries, including China, the United States, Britain and Germany, were invited to attend and speak. The event also attracted millions of viewers from dozens of platforms.
At the opening session, speeches were delivered by a series of speakers, including: Dr. Zhou Jinfeng, Secretary General of the China Green Development Foundation; Mr. Jian Yi, founder of the Good Food Fund; Mr. Sun Qun, Secretary General of Slow Food Great China; Mr. Wang Zhenyao, President of Beijing Normal University’s China Institute of Public Welfare; and Mr. Martin Frick, deputy special envoy of the United Nations Food System summit. Each speaker delivered opening speeches and expressed their blessings and hopes for the summit.
After that, attendees enjoyed interesting speeches on food system resilience, social innovation, food system transformation, sustainable consumption, and post-COVID industrial agriculture from a series of experienced experts. Speakers included Matteo Marchisio, Head of the International Fund for Agricultural Development’s East Asia Regional Hub; Roy Steiner, Senior Vice President of the Rockefeller Foundation; Dr. Gunhild A. Stordalen, director of EAT Foundation; and Philip Lymbery, Global CEO of World Farm Animal Welfare Association. These speeches raised awareness about the common challenges facing the world today, such as the increased risk of zoonotic disease, climate change, high levels of chronic diseases, and their relationship with the world’s current unhealthy food systems. These challenges are precisely the reason why the United Nations decided to launch a world summit on food systems.
It is not enough to understand the urgency of food system transformation. We need to know what kind of transformation is truly sustainable and will not simply repeat the mistakes of the past. This is why it is so important to hear the first-hand experiences from people on the front lines of sustainable food reform.
We have noticed that some best practices and successful cases have emerged in various fields of China's food system. We hope that with the focus on food issues during the UN Food Systems Summit, we can further inspire and promote more changes through the sustainable food system best practices discovered throughout the country.
At the beginning of this year, UNFSS-AT2 China action platform and Good Food Fund co-developed a collection of best practice cases in the field of sustainable food system transformation. After more than six months, under the strict review and evaluation of top domestic and international industry experts, we selected 24 outstanding institutions from a total of 36 submissions and included them in the 2021 Sustainable Food Best Practice Case Collection.
For more information about the Case Collection：https://www.goodfoodchina.net/good-food-resources/163
This is the first time that the Good Food Fund has undertaken the collection of best practice cases in the field of domestic food system reform. The cases are classified according to the eight aspects of the 2019 Good Food Pledge: Plant Forward (85% plant-based, supplemented by animal foods), Animal Welfare (supporting animal agriculture that aligns with farm animals’ natural needs), Healthy Diet, Reduce Waste, Local and Seasonal, Circular Sustainability, Biodiversity, and Food Education.
At the fifth Good Food Summit, the Good Food Fund presented three classes of awards to the 24 institutions according to the scores given by the judging panel. The three awards are "Best Practice Award", "Food Vision Award" and "Food System Friendship Award".
The "Best Practice Award" commends institutions that have conducted outstanding exploration and practice in all eight areas of the Good Food Pledge and establish a model for China's sustainable food transformation;
The "Food Vision Award" commends institutions that propose an inspiring future vision and action path. Their work clearly demonstrates a broad vision and we sincerely hope that such vision can be implemented;
The "Food System Friendship Award" is used to recognize the action agencies that have implemented the Good Food Pledge and planted seeds of hope for sustainable food in China.
Award recipients are diverse: a media platform that speaks for sustainable food through images, sounds and words to increase public awareness of food security issues; restaurants that develop plant-forward menus; charity organizations dedicated to helping pastoral farmers to raise livestock sustainably, prevent grassland degradation, diversify business streams, and increase farmers’ income; an academic team studying the environmental impact of yak grazing systems in Tibet and their implications for sustainable alternatives to industrial animal agriculture; catering enterprises that use artificial intelligence to analyze the causes of food waste and automate purchasing decisions to minimize food waste; community supported agricultural alliances that facilitate the healthy development of small permaculture farmers; food education institutions that implement food agriculture education in schools and fill in the gaps in urban children’s understanding of the origin of food.
These organizations have different attributes and different perspectives, but they are all providing a new model for the transformation of the food system. Their diversity also reflects the complexity and inclusiveness of food system reform, showing how almost every industry can make its own contribution on the road of sustainable development! In addition, these new paradigms have significantly reduced carbon footprints, so they are also helping to achieve China's carbon reduction goals.
In addition to the main forum, the four sub-forums also yielded excellent discussions.
The Animal Welfare Forum explored and compared animal protection concepts and corresponding dietary practices in Chinese history, sought to establish a Chinese basis for the concept of "animal welfare", and discussed how to raise consumer awareness about animal welfare and make consumers more willing to buy high-welfare animal products.
The Eco-Chef 2030 Forum referred to the 2016 Dietary Guidelines for China, which calls for more vegetables and less meat (called "plant-forward" by the GFF), the "Healthy China Action Plan (2019-2030)", and "Sensible Diet Action Plan". The forum focused on how to help chefs drive plant-forward food, animal welfare, and healthy eating within the food and beverage industry, and how to substantially impact the industry and investment direction in the next 10 to 20 years.
The Urban Food Environment Forum discussed how the urban food environment—comprising traditional markets, supermarkets, restaurants, canteens, takeout platforms, media information, dietary traditions and ingredient suppliers—can help the public to choose a healthy diet.
The Food Education Forum invited domestic front-line practitioners in the field of food education to share how food education contributes to sustainable food system reform.
After nearly three days of talking and sharing, the fifth Good Food Summit concluded smoothly. This year’s summit gathered the most cutting-edge research results and action cases in the field of sustainable food in China. We hope that at this historic transitional period, the Summit can provide actionable and detailed reference and guidance for policy-making, academic research, business innovation, and other fields. As stated in the EAT-Lancet Commission Summary Report, "Food is the single strongest lever to optimize human health and environmental sustainability on Earth". Let's continue working together for the future of humanity and the planet!