Select Speaking Engagements

Global Value Chains, Smallholder Farmers and Digital Innovations
(SOCO 2020 Launch at FAO)
The State of Agricultural Commodity Markets 2020 focuses on the role of trade in sustainable development. It is difficult to believe that today 690 million people are undernourished, and that 3 billion people cannot afford healthy food. Global value chain is the most efficient way to make food available for everyone. Our job is to bring smallholder farmers into global value chains through innovation, technology, education and governance, so that they can reach their productivity potential and escape poverty.

FAO, Rome
Virtual Launch Event, September 23, 2020

Planet, People, Prosperity
A Thriving World for Our Future Generation

(Future of Food Institute)
Today, there are 3 billion people who cannot afford to buy healthy foods. The need for change has never been greater. But as COVID-19 has shown, food systems are resilient and flexible. By taking a holistic approach, in which everyone plays a part, especially young people, we can create a movement to transform food systems and make progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals.

Future of Food Institute Global Roundtable
Online Event, August 6, 2020

Why the Andes, Why Now?
Role of the Andean Region for Human and Planetary Health

(Andean Initiative and International Potato Center)
The Andes host the greatest range of mountain biodiversity and are the frontier of agriculture in the highest altitude in the world. Climate extremes are embedded in traditional smallholder management practices. By better understanding climatic extremes experienced in the Andes, we can better prepare for what might happen elsewhere in the world.

International Potato Center
Webinar, July 23, 2020

Transforming Food Systems for Affordable Healthy Diets
(SOFI 2020 virtual launch at the United Nations; Virtual Press Conference; PPT Presentation)
The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2020 has critical data updates on China and other countries, allowing more accurate estimation of the number of chronically undernourished people across the globe: about 690 million people went hungry in 2019, up by 10 million from 2018. To stave off lasting damage to health, governments must offset the soaring cost of healthy diets, especially in regions that have been hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic.

United Nations New York
Virtual Launch Event, July 13, 2020
FAO Podcast on SOFI 2020
July 14, 2020

Food Security in the Pandemic
(The New York Academy of Sciences)
Most of the world’s hungry people live in poorer countries where sources of income — from tourism to remittances — have dried up due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Governments must respond by equally protecting and promoting health, food and the economy.

The New York Academy of Sciences
Webinar, May 27, 2020

Latin America in 2020: Another Last Decade?
(The Oxford Union Latin America Debate)
From South America and the Andes to the Caribbean, Latin American nations vary in their vulnerabilities to COVID-19 and financial capacities to respond to it. By tackling inequality and investing in education and institutions, they can remove barriers to development, education and trade to fuel long-term growth.

The Oxford Union
Podcast debate, May 26, 2020

Food Security and COVID-19
(Food Talk with Dani Nierenberg)
The situation today is different from the 2007-2008 global food crisis because, unlike then, there is plenty of food. The global stocks of food staples are high and healthy harvests are expected. But keeping the food supply chains operating is key to averting a food crisis. Trade restrictions and panic hoarding will only disrupt supply chains, creating artificial shortages.

Podcast interview, April 18, 2020

Moving Forward on Food Loss and Waste Reduction
(SOFA 2019 launch at CSIS)
From improving food security and economic efficiency to carbon sequestration, reducing food loss and waste can bring tremendous benefits. The challenge is to improve data to find out how much food is lost and identify critical loss points in the food supply chain to develop effective interventions. The State of World’s Food and Agriculture 2019 takes policymakers to tasks.

Center for International and Strategic Studies
Washington, D.C., October 29, 2019

Food Loss and Waste Reduction Can Improve Food Security and Climate Change
(SOFA 2019 launch at FAO)
Based on data from governments and independent studies, The State of Food and Agriculture 2019 estimates that globally, around 14 percent of food is lost between post-harvest and wholesale stages of the food supply chain. It argues that with improved data, food loss and waste reduction can help improve food security and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Food and Agriculture Organization
Rome, October 14, 2019

Economic Resilience Is Key to Protecting Food and Nutrition Security
(SOFI 2019 launch at the United Nations New York)
The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2019 alerts us that economic turmoil negatively affects food security and nutrition. Countries need to act now to boost social protection programs and protect incomes. In the longer term, they need to make investments to reduce economic vulnerability and inequality.

United Nations
New York, July 15, 2019

The Ranks of Hungry People on the Rise
(SOFI 2019 launch at IFPRI)
Using detailed methodologies, The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2019 makes official data from governments public and explains what they signify. It offers analysis of the drivers of hunger and malnutrition with a special focus on the impact of economic slowdowns and downturns.

International Food Policy Research Institute
Washington, D.C., July 18, 2019

The Political Economy of Food Systems
(EAT Forum 2019)
The current food system is not sustainable. In order to implement best practices from pioneering countries like New Zealand, we need to first build a common understanding of what “food systems” are and align incentives with evidence. David Nabarro moderates the discussion and Vicky Robertson joins in. See Torero’s EAT bio.

EAT Forum 2019
Stockholm, Sweden, June 13, 2019

Digital Agriculture Transformation: Challenges
Ours is a world of agriculture, one that comprises smallholder farmers, 40% of whom are women. For digital technology to benefit smallholder farmers worldwide, we need to ensure that it is affordable and adaptable for the poor, and that users have capability to take advantage of it. We need efficient regulatory mechanisms to make sure the digital divide doesn’t grow deeper.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Rome, June 12, 2019

Food Systems, Smallholder Farmers and Climate Change
(Future of Food Talks)
Today we need to feed more people, generate more employment and be sustainable. If we understand these relationships, we can prioritize our investments.

Highlights from FAO’s Future of Food Talk Series
Rome, June 10, 2019
(Photo credit: Neil Palmer/CIAT)

The Impact of Food Loss and Waste
(Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2019)
The impact of food loss and waste on the availability of increasingly scarce resources and how it can be tackled.

Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2019
The Hague, the Netherlands, June 3-5, 2019

Robotics and AI for Food Security and Innovation
(Robotics, AI and Humanity Workshop at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences)
In order to sustainably feed nearly 10 billion by 2050, the world must achieve a great balancing act, including closing the food gap and supporting economic development while reducing environmental impact. Technological innovations have significant potential to achieve this balance and improve food security.

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Vatican, May 16, 2019

How to Achieve Gender Equality
(Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations)
Women represent 50 percent of the world population, but only 38 percent of human capital in the world. If women made the same amount of income that men do, the world’s GDP would essentially double.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Rome, May 2019

The Role of Information
(International Forum on Food Safety and Trade)
Information plays a critical role in improving food safety across value chain and bridging the digital gap. It is only with information that people will be able to change their behavior.

International Forum on Food Safety and Trade
Geneva, Apr 24, 2019

Disruptive Digital Innovations in Value Chains
(22nd ICABR Conference)
For digital technologies to help the world achieve a great balancing act — of closing the food gap, supporting economic development and reducing environmental impact — we need to ensure that they promote innovations, equality and inclusion.

The World Bank
Washington, D.C., June 12-15, 2018

Connectivity as Human Right
(Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Foundation for Worldwide Cooperation)
Three billion people around the world still do not have access to the Internet. Connectivity is paramount, but content and the capability of the users are also important. Children can play a significant role in bridging the information gap.

Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Foundation for Worldwide Cooperation
Vatican City, October 17, 2017
ICT and Health
Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Foundation for Worldwide Cooperation
Vatican City, October 17, 2017

Connectivity, Content and Children
(Ag Talks)
Children using mobile phones help their computer-illiterate parents overcome some of the most serious problems facing farmers in the developing world.

Ag Talks
International Fund for Agricultural Development
Rome, June 3, 2015

Global Hunger Index 2011 Launch
(World Food Prize/Borlaug International Symposium)
The index provides a multidimensional measure of global, regional, and national hunger. By bringing the results every year, it raises awareness and shows progress overtime. It also shows which countries are performing well and gives incentives to those that lag behind.

World Food Prize/Borlaug International Symposium
Des Moines, Iowa
October 13, 2011