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2020/ Food and Biodiversity – Mainstreaming with Nature

7 February 2020 at Montpellier SupAgro (France)

For its 9th annual meeting, the UNESCO Chair in World Food Systems is focusing on "Food and Biodiversity".

Discover the 8-minute summary video with the English subtitles:

Food and Bioversity : Mainstreaming with Nature

Biodiversity in food and agriculture encompasses the diversity of living systems (from genes to ecosystems) and associated knowledge (traditional knowledge and know-how). Relationships with the living world are changing from a fixed view of nature to a more dynamic outlook. Threatened by human activities, biodiversity was regarded as a sum of independent components to be protected, used and developed. Yet nowadays biodiversity is a more integral part of human societies and perceived as a sum of complex interactions, combinations and social and cultural constructs to be negotiated. From this viewpoint of the relationship, agricultural and food activities are pivotal to issues regarding the natural links that will be discussed at this Symposium: Does the ’species’ concept reflect reality? Are we on the eve of a 6th mass extinction? How can safeguarding forests be reconciled with maintenance of their nurturing function? How can diversity be restored in the field (via agroecology), in food processing industries and on the plate?

Watch with the English subtitles the inaugural conference :
Pierre-Henri Gouyon, geneticist, French National Museum of Natural History

Full Programme

9:00 am Opening
Carole Sinfort, Director of Training and Scientific Policy, Montpellier SupAgro
Michel Eddi, President and Managing Director, CIRAD
Damien Conaré, Secretary General, UNESCO Chair in World Food Systems, Montpellier SupAgro

9:30 am Inaugural conference by Pierre-Henri Gouyon, geneticist, French National Museum of Natural History

11:00 am Session 1: Food-oriented biodiversity management
 Mariteuw Chimère Diaw, Director General, African Model Forests Network, Member of the Multidisciplinary Expert Panel of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES): “The nurturing forest”
 Marie-Paule Clément, agricultural raw material buyer, Léa Nature: “Biodiversity in agrifood processing industries”
 Selassie Atadika, chef at the Midunu restaurant, Accra, Ghana : “Culinary diversity to offset the "rice-ification" in West Africa”

12:30 pm 2020 UNESCO Chair in World Food Systems Doctoral Award presentation

2:00 pm Conversation
“Humans and nature in comics” with Alessandro Pignocchi, comic book author

3:00 pm Session 2: Reflections on relationships in nature
 Marie-Laure Navas, Ecologist, Montpellier SupAgro; Director, Center for Functional and Evolutionary Ecology (CEFE): “Biodiversity evolution and forward-looking scenarios”
 Valérie Chansigaud, Historian – Science and the Environment; Associate Researcher, Paris Diderot UniversityCNRS: “Revitalizing the pivotal role of social progress in safeguarding nature”
 Cécile Claveirole, Head of the Agriculture network, France Nature Environnment; Qualified Individual, French Economic, Social and Environmental Council (ESEC): “Agroecology and agrobiodiversity”
 Emilie Jeannin, livestock farmer, La ferme de Lignières (Côte d’Or Department, France): “Female farmers and livestock, ‘ethical beef’”

4:20 pm Conclusion
Selim Louafi, Political Science researcher, CIRAD, UMR AGAP