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Nuno Lopes Gama

Sonae got together experts to discuss the future of food

22 September 2017

In the end of June, at the event"The Future of Food – Envisioning our Food Systems”, we welcomed to Sonae MaiaBusiness Centre representatives of the European Commission and multinationalcompanies including retail operators, researchers and entrepreneurs, to discussthemes such as the importance of circular economy, nutrition, food science andlogistics in the future of food. For two days, over 100 participants, from 54organisations and nine nationalities, met to discuss themes that are centralfor Sonae and that, we hope, represent the kickstart to a growing awareness ofthe effort made by all the intervenients in this domain.

Food is one of our society'sgreatest challenges, influenced by an increasing population, the impoverishmentof soils, subnutrition and malnutrition of the populations and food waste,among many other realities.

To face these challenges, we believein the reinforcement of collaboration throughout the whole food chain, includingoperators both inside and outside the traditional food systems. From thediscussion between these experts came the conviction that decision-making willbe growingly based on scientific knowledge, revolutionising the way we produce,acquire and consume food and treat and reuse its waste.

We are conscious that if we lookinto the future we must do it in a comprehensive way, through the focus onproduct development, understanding and anticipating consumers' needs, witheffective logistical operations and considering sustainability, creating newresearch, development and innovation projects. There are several examples ofthat, from the development of new smart packages, the adoption of new sourcesof protein, product development using healthier ingredients, to using computertechnology for a more convenient and democratic healthy nutrition, diminishingand reusing food waste and even in the conception of new logistics models, moreeffective and sustainable.

At Sonae we are certain that thiskind of initiatives has a positive impact on our innovation ecosystem throughthe reinforcement of a collaboration network. We are also more and more focusedon well-being and sustainability and we are aware of the benefits of a healthylifestyle. "The Future of Food – Envisioning our Food Systems” has certainlybeen the first step towards opening new horizons and creating joint projectsand actions that seek to face the food system's great challenges.

 Nuno Lopes Gama,
Head of Innovation and Future Tech da Sonae

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