Food Future Ideas Fest by Food Drink Europe

16th June 2022

FoodDrinkEurope celebrated its 40 years as an industry representative! To celebrate, they organised the #FoodFuture Ideas Fest, an amazing event in the gardens of the Museum of Natural Sciences in Brussels. With more than 25 speakers and 600 attendees, spread throughout three tents, clusters focused on healthy living, sustainable packaging, and zero emissions. The format was clearly TEDTalk-inspired and brought together representatives from the food industry, academia, and policy to explore issues associated with the EU food and drink industry. In the healthy living tent, the need for consumers to achieve balanced diets, move often, resist temptations, eat more plant-based foods, and reduce portion sizes were not surprising but the fact we are still talking about them demonstrates that there is still much work to be done. Claire Bury, Deputy Director-General SANTE publicly thanked FoodDrinkEurope for its contribution to the Code of Conduct for Responsible Food Business and Marketing Practices, which aims to underpin sustainable food systems. The celebration finished with drinks, live music, fancy tapas, barbeque, birthday cupcakes, and customised cocktails, honouring the outgoing Director General, Mella Frewen, who has led the organisation for 30 years and hands over to Dirk Jacobs.


Healthy living tent:

  • Nudging consumers for good – Michelle Gibbons, Director General at European Brands Association (AIM)
  • Understanding consumer behaviour – Marleen Onwezen, Researcher at Wageningen University
  • Healthy vs. tasty: what do consumers really want? – Sebastian Emig, Director General at the European Snacks Association
  • The importance of whole grain – Jan Willem van der Kamp, Director Cereal Research at TNO Netherlands and Chair of the Definitions Working Group of the Whole Grain initiative
  • Education, planetary diets and the Gen Z take – Júlia Montoliu Boneu, Pharmacist, Nutritionist and FutureFoodMaker at EIT Food
  • Food as a Force for Good – Hanneke Faber, President Nutrition at Unilever
  • Digital solutions enabling diets good for people and the planet – Annika Hedberg, Head of Sustainable Prosperity for Europe programme at the European Policy Centre
  • What’s a healthy city? – Anja Katalin De Cunto, “Food Trails” Project Coordinator and Policy Advisor for food and procurement at Eurocities
  • Unsung heroes of food innovations – Jonas Lazaro Mojica, Senior Manager Food Policy, Science and R&D at FoodDrinkEurope


Sustainable packaging tent:

  • The path to zero waste – Joan-Marc Simon, Executive Director at Zero Waste
  • The EU’s 2030 vision – Maja Desgrees Du Loû, Policy Officer at the European Commission’s DG Environment
  • Replacing plastic with…sugar beet? – Judith Schrenk, Communications officer at the European sugar manufacturers organisation CEFS
  • Flexible packaging on a mission – Graham Houlder, Project Co-ordinator at Ceflex
  • Consumers’ role towards packaging circularity – Jean-Pierre Schweitzer, Senior Policy Officer for Circular Economy and Product Policy at the European Environmental Bureau (EEB)
  • Nestle’s sustainable packaging solutions – Christian Detrois, Senior Packaging Expert at Nestlé Europe
  • Why deposit return schemes matter – Raymond Gianotten, Director at Statiegeld Nederland
  • Circularity of spirits bottles – Ulrich Adam, Director General at spiritsEurope


Zero emissions tent:

  • The big food redesign – Gaëlle Le Gélard, Design Manager at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation
  • Reducing packaging weight to reduce the carbon footprint – Niels Brouwers, Packaging Development Manager Europe at ABinBev
  • What is regenerative agriculture? – Chuck de Liedekerke, CEO at Soil Capital
  • How to tell your climate story – Max Fry, BBC series partnerships
  • Can Brussels food go green? – Rob Renaerts, Coduco and Brussels Good Food Project
  • The tale of two soups – Sam Williams, Business Development Manager at Ricardo
  • Food waste: the urgency of peeling the onion – Raschad Al-Khafaji, Brussels Director at the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO)
  • Dreaming of a carbon-free village – Philippe Birker, co-founder of Climate Farmers




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