Florida Members of Congress and Leading Nutrition, Agricultural, and Health Experts Convene at Summit to Discuss State’s Efforts to Strengthen Global Food Security and Nutrition

811 million people faced hunger in 2020, according to new estimates from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Today, the Kyle House Group, Eleanor Crook Foundation, Farm Journal Foundation, Florida A&M University, Florida Farm Bureau Federation, and the American Farm Bureau Federation hosted a virtual briefing on Florida’s leadership in agriculture research and development, production, and international trade to end hunger and malnutrition.

The 2021 Florida Global Food Security Summit included a series of panels aimed to connect the global food security agenda back to the state’s farmers, ranchers, universities, businesses, faith-based and civil society organizations. 811 million people faced hunger in 2020, according to new estimates from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Moderated by Porter DeLaney, Founding Partner at Kyle House Group, the summit was joined by elected officials, local, and global leaders. The event included opening remarks from Dale Moore, Executive Vice President, American Farm Bureau Federation, Dr. J. Scott Angle, Vice President of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Dr. Carrie Castille, Director, U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

“The alliance of some of the world’s most productive farmers and scientists at one of the nation’s top-rated universities makes Florida a key player in feeding the world,” said Dr. J. Scott Angle, UF’s senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources and leader of UF/IFAS. “Conversely, we don’t have a monopoly on great ideas and innovation, and what we learn abroad we share with Florida’s farmers and ranchers to help them produce even more profitably and sustainably.”

Featured panelists and remarks delivered at the summit were provided by:

· Dr. Robert Taylor, Dean and Director of Land Grant Programs, Florida A&M University

· Kevin Lussier, Florida Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers and Ranchers Leadership Group President

· Renee Strickland, Owner, Strickland Ranch & Exports, Inc. and Farmer Ambassador, Farm Journal Foundation

· Dr. Adegbola Adesogan, Director, Food Systems Institute; Director, Livestock Systems Innovation Lab, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

· Dr. Robert Bertram, Chief Scientist, USAID Bureau for Resilience and Food Security

· Dr. Pedro Sanchez, Research Professor, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

· Dr. Omolola Betiku, Assistant Professor, College of Agriculture & Food Sciences, Florida A&M University

· William Moore, CEO, Eleanor Crook Foundation

“Malnutrition isn’t just going to bed on an empty stomach. It’s life or death. Even before COVID, malnutrition was responsible for half of child deaths around the world — with over 3 million children dying, from severe malnutrition, every year,” said William Moore, CEO of the Eleanor Crook Foundation. “What motivates me when confronted with this harsh reality is this is a problem with a solution. This summit shows how Florida is a strong example of a state where the agriculture sector is working together to end global hunger and malnutrition.”

Additional speakers at the event included United States Congressional Representatives Kat Cammack (R-FL-03), Gregory Steube (D-FL-17), Ted Deutch (D-FL-22), Lois Frankel (D-FL-21) and closing remarks from former Congressional Representative Ted Yoho.

“When you combine the national security aspect of food, with the global markets, the free markets, that’s when you can really start seeing forward-moving progress when it comes to addressing global malnutrition as well as global food insecurity,” Rep. Cammack said.

“As our global population continues to rise, scientists have been working to find sustainable ways to produce enough food with less land and less water than ever before. Due to Florida’s unique climate, our state is positioned to be a global leader in food security,” said Rep. Steube. “Many of Florida’s Agricultural resources are located in my district, and Florida’s Heartland is honored to have over 5,000 farms that produce over 1 billion dollars in market value.”

“Tackling hunger is about more than just putting food on the table,” said Rep. Frankel. “It provides the foundation necessary to build more peaceful, prosperous, and secure communities for people around the world. Thank you to the hosts of this summit for the critical work you are doing to achieve this goal.”

ATTRIBUTIONS

Image 1 – Unsplash

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