GFFA 2019

For the fourth time the Leibniz Research Alliance 'Food and Nutrition' was holding an expert panel discussion at the Global Forum for Food and Agriculture (GFFA), hosted by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (Germany).

This year, jointly with our international partner OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development)  five invited experts discussed the role of digitalization across agri-food chains. The title of our session was 'Digital Technologies for Agri-Food Chains: High Potential - Critical Gaps'.

The panelists and organizers of the GFFA panel discussion (from left): Prof. Dr. Reiner Brunsch (LFV LE), Dr. Vera Tekken (LFV LE), Terry Martin (DW), Prof. Dr. Cornelia Weltzien (ATB), Sian Thomas (UK Food Standards Agency), Shivani Kannabhiran (OECD), Prof. Dr. Hermann Lotze-Campen (PIK), Diane Taillard (GS1) and Dr. Frank van Tongeren (OECD).

Moderation – Terry Martin
Prof. Dr. Cornelia Weltzien (ATB)

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Cornelia Weltzien is head of ATB Department “Engineering for Crop Production” and chair of Agro Mechatronics at the TU Berlin since 2015. After studying agricultural engineering at the University of Applied Sciences Cologne she completed her postgraduate studies in mechanical engineerinng at Technical University Braunschweig in 2006. In 2008 Prof. Dr.-Ing. Weltzien obtains her doctorate at the Institute for Agriculutral Machinery and Fluid Technology with the thesis "Assistance System for the Overloading Process with a selfpropelled Forage Harvester". Before joining ATB she was part of interdisciplinary advanced engineering teams in the industry, developing electro hydraulic control systems for mobile working machinery. Her expertise are precision agriculture, automation of agricultural processes, smart systems, digitalisation in agriculture. Prof. Dr.-Ing. Weltzien is a nationally and internationally recognized elite researcher in the field of digital agriculture.

Sian Thomas (UK FSA)

Sian Thomas is the head of Data, Information Governance and Security at the Food Standards Agency in the UK.  Sian leads a number of innovative projects using new technology to solve real world food problems, recently leading work to pilot a blockchain to show traceability of red meat supply and provide information about disease at slaughter to animals previous owners and keepers.

Critical to data innovation work is the need to uphold data standards, and as a big advocate of effective standards Sian often cites this as the fundamental building block for the Food Standards Agency’s success stories.

Also and advocate of open (rather than shared) data, Sian has been involved in developing a new surveillance model for the FSA – using improvements in data capture, storage and management to develop mechanisms to predict issues before they manifest in the food system.

Prior to her existing role, Sian was the Head of Analytics, led a Social Research team and has been involved in Science Governance at the FSA.  Her background is in Food Science and Sian has a degree in Biochemistry and a PhD in Biotechnology.

Shivani Kannabhiran (OECD)

Shivani Kannabhiran is a Policy Analyst at the Responsible Business Conduct unit of the OECD. A specialist in supply chain due diligence, Shivani provides advice to governments and companies on how to implement international standards on responsible business conduct.  Shivani works closely with a wide range of stakeholders to solve implementation challenges in a variety of sectors including agriculture.

Prof. Dr. Hermann Lotze-Campen (PIK)

Prof. Hermann Lotze-Campen studied Agricultural Sciences and Agricultural Economics in Kiel (Germany), Reading (UK) and Minnesota (USA). He holds a Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from Humboldt University Berlin. Since 2012 he is co-chair of Research Domain "Climate Impacts and Vulnerabilities" at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). Since 2014 he is also Professor of Sustainable Land Use and Climate Change at HU Berlin. Prof. Lotze-Campen is working on global land use modelling, climate impacts and adaptation in agriculture, multi-sector impact aggregation, land-use-based mitigation, as well as links between energy and agriculture. He has many years of experience in linking large-scale economic and biophysical models. He is strongly involved in the Agricultural Model Intercomparison Project (AgMIP) and the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISIMIP).

Diane Taillard (GS1)

Diane started her carrier at Cap Gemini. She joint GS1 France in 1998 and held positions of increasing responsibility in business development, technologies and innovations.

in 2007, Diane joint GS1 Global Office as Director Industry Solutions. She launched GS1 Mobile Commerce, a cutting-edge initiative with pioneers of the Omni-channel age that refreshed the contribution of data standards to business-to-consumer interactions. She led the development of GS1 global traceability programme for capacity building and its deployment in 65 countries. She facilitated and provided research support for the Product Traceability Expert Group of the European Commission, Directorate General Health and Consumers.  Since 2014, she focuses on building the global traceability ecosystem to enable product safety, transparency, consumer trust and food waste reduction based on GS1 common language for businesses. Diane was recently Vice-Chair of the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) Regional Outreach work group.


Video of the GFFA Expert-Panel Discussion