Seed World

Ag Innovation Showcase Highlights Trends and Technologies Transforming the Food Industry

Leading voices from across the food industry to explore an array of data-driven innovations within the context of dramatic shifts in consumer demand and demographics.

Larta Institute has announced the finalized program for the 10th Ag Innovation Showcase, the industry’s leading event celebrating innovations in agriculture and food, taking place this year from September 10-12, 2018, at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, MO.

The 2018 program brings together entrepreneurs with innovative solutions from many countries, industry professionals, investors and other attendees from around the world. The content-rich agenda seeks to trace the arc of innovation in plant nutrition, working with nature’s diversity, exploring new sources of protein, and seeking to introduce greater transparency into the entire value chain from production and farming to distribution. The theme From Farm to Plate underscores the commitment of the 2018 Showcase to establish clarity, dialogue and excellence in a time of increased consumer scrutiny and interest and demand. This year, the fertilizer industry, focused as it is on sustainability, plant nutrition and environmental footprint, is well represented at the Showcase, with major industry figures from across that industry’s value chain speaking or in attendance, including Mark Thompson, Vice President of Business Development at Nutrien; Zhai Jidong, Vice President from Kingenta; Ryan Bond, Vice President Strategic Marketing and Innovation from Koch Agronomic Services; Charlotte Hebebrand, Director General of the International Fertilizer Association; and Bob Morris, President of AndMore Associates and Ag Showcase Advisory Committee member.

“We are exceptionally proud that the 10th edition of this community event brings together some of the most innovative and influential voices across the global food industry,” says Larta Institute CEO Rohit Shukla. “We are looking back to look forward, celebrating 10 years of innovation in the entire industry and recognizing the extraordinary shifts in consumer preferences and interest in food.”

The event is anchored by keynotes from global agriculture technology leaders: Mehmood Khan, Vice Chairman and Chief Scientific Officer of PepsiCo, who will describe the power of consumers to help influence food practices; Jill Kolling, Global Sustainability Leader of Cargill, who will speak to the increasing traceability and transparency of commodity supply chains; Neal Gutterson CTO of Corteva, focusing on sustainable solutions for farmers and Rebecca Doyle, former Director of the United Nations World Food Programme and co-owner of the Hickory Grove Pork Farm, who will address the demands on the world food system for addressing nutritional deficiencies, and escalating needs for food security amid an exploding world population.

The event will also feature an alumni panel and select spotlights designed to celebrate the 10-year history of the event and past showcase themes, reflecting on changes within the industry since the event’s inception in 2009, including blockchain technologies, impacts from a changing climate, pursuit ofclosed-loopp systems, automation on the farm, and the convergence of the food, health and energy sectors.

Additionally, a soon-to-be-announced selection of innovative companies working in these areas of interest from around the world will present their solutions to widely-felt problems and issues facing the sector as the challenges of feeding 9 billion people by 2050 has become a rallying cry for innovators everywhere.