Organic Trade Association council bringing unique organic perspective to UN Food Systems Summit

The Organic Trade Association’s Sustainable Food Trade Action (SFTA) Council is bringing organic’s unique voice to a ground-breaking global conversation on May 10 on how to achieve a sustainable and just food system. Hosting a Food Systems Dialogue that will contribute to the United Nation’s first-ever Food Systems Summit in September, the council is inviting interested individuals to register to join this important discussion to elevate organic in the effort to address critical challenges impacting our world’s food systems.

The SFTA Council and the Organic Trade Association will be among hundreds of farmers, producer groups, academics, scientists, governments, non-profit associations, and indigenous communities around the world who are contributing to the historic summit with their ideas and propositions to transform food systems. The Council will submit the results of its dialogue to organizers of the UN Summit, and the information will be used to inform the Summit and feed into the Summit’s priority action tracks.

The topic of the dialogue hosted by the SFTA Council will be “Organic as a solution to meet increasing demands from consumers and global markets, to address environmental pressures, and to achieve UN sustainable development goals.” The event will bring together a diverse group of stakeholders to look at the ways organic can help address such global challenges as hunger, poverty, climate change and inequality. Paul Schiefer, Sr. Director of Sustainability at Amy’s Kitchen & Chair of Organic Trade Association’s Sustainable Food Trade Action Council, will lead the conversation.

“Organic has untapped potential for immense positive change in our world. It is sustainable and environmentally friendly. It creates opportunities for small farmers and helps rural economies. It can help mitigate climate change, and it encourages innovation. The SFTA Council is aligned with the UN’s Sustainability goals, and we welcome the opportunity to join this critical conversation to work toward those goals,” said Schiefer.

Six small breakout discussions will take place to ensure a deep dive into separate issues. Facilitators of these breakout groups will be members of the SFTA Council:

  1. Feeding the world – Olga Borquez, Wholesum Family Farms
  2. Human health and wellbeing – Kevin Lee, Dr. Bronner’s
  3. Climate action – Britt Lundgren, Stonyfield Farm
  4. Socially responsible economic growth – Tracy Favre, Fig Hill Farm Consulting
  5. International trade – Emily Musgrave, Driscoll’s
  6. Innovation – Matt Landi, Awe Sum Organics

Sixty seats are being allocated for diverse stakeholders who will include organic farmers, scientists, food manufacturers, organic fiber, nutritionists, international players, and more.

The UN Food Systems Summit was announced by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on World Food Day last October. Its aim is to deliver progress on all 17 of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals through a food systems approach, leveraging the interconnectedness of food systems to global challenges.

The Organic Trade Association (OTA) is the membership-based business association for organic agriculture and products in North America. OTA is the leading voice for the organic trade in the United States, representing over 9,500 organic businesses across 50 states. Its members include growers, shippers, processors, certifiers, farmers’ associations, distributors, importers, exporters, consultants, retailers and others. OTA’s Board of Directors is democratically elected by its members. OTA’s mission is to promote and protect ORGANIC with a unifying voice that serves and engages its diverse members from farm to marketplace. The Organic Trade Association does not discriminate on the basis of age, disability, national origin or ancestry, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, political affiliation or military status. Persons with disabilities who require alternate means for communication of program information can contact us at [email protected].