WUWM Conference, “The Fresh Way to Feed the Planet”

17 - 19 May 2017
Rome, Italy

Executive summary:

During the WUWM Conference in Rome, experts stressed that all stakeholders in the wholesale and retail industry should embrace the opportunity to fight malnutrition worldwide and promote policies and programs that improve food security. Attendants also highlighted the increase in demand for healthy and organic food. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) was co-organizing the plenary sessions of May 18, involving highly qualified and experienced professionals to raise awareness for healthy diets and sustainable food systems, both on a national and international scale. Among other things, the FAO called for economic incentives and regulations to promote healthy diets and increase the availability and affordability of nutritious food across the globe.

The key outcomes of this meeting are:

  1. The United Nations Decade of Action on Nutrition (0216-2025) stresses this is the decade of opportunity for all stakeholders:
    1. To strengthen joint efforts towards eradicating hunger and preventing all forms of malnutrition worldwide
    2. To make commitments to advancing the global nutrition agenda by 2025
    3. To increase nutrition actions and investments as well as implement policies and programs to improve food security and nutrition
    4. To promote mutual accountability for achieving global, regional and national nutrition commitments
  2. FAO calls for changes in policies to incentivize the provision and consumption of healthy diets, including marketing regulations and economic incentives.
  3. FAO also facilitates necessary high-level dialogue between governments and their partners to develop common norms and approaches for sustainable food systems and healthy diets. Policies should
    1. Increase the availability and affordability of nutritious foods and diets in markets
    2. Increase off-season availability & affordability of nutritious foods in markets
    3. Increase diversity in markets, including increased availability of nutritious and underutilized foods
    4. Improve convenience of nutritious foods
    5. Strengthen storage, processing and retail of nutritious foods
  4. For many people across the world, consumers habits have changed over the last three decades. Nowadays consumers hope for: eating better food, having a healthy diet, knowing where the food comes from, and avoiding pesticides.
    1. Organic food is more in demand. According to IFOAM (International Foundation of Organic Agriculture): “over the last three decades, organic food and farming has continued to grow year-on-year across Europe. Since the mid-1980s, in the European Union, the total area of farmland under organic production has increased steadily to 10.3 million hectares (in 2014). This has been accompanied by buoyant market growth over the last ten years, with the total value of the EU organic retail market doubling from €11.1 billion in 2005 to €24 billion in 2014”. The area of organically managed agricultural land now represents 5.7% of total agricultural area in Europe.
  5. Rungis Wholesale Market, France is an excellent example of a market including more organics. They offer a varied range of food that is certified as organic: fruit and vegetables “both fresh and processed”, wines and spirits, dairy products, meat, delicatessen, and catering products, etc. In the short term, Rungis aims to achieve that 5% of its turnover is made up by environmentally friendly, organic or Fairtrade products.
  6. The cold chain construction of China’s agricultural wholesale markets has entered a period of rapid development
    1. Enterprises step up efforts to promote cold chain construction
    2. Construction of cold storage is speeding up
    3. New technology applications have been enhanced
    4. Intelligent management of cold storage

Main issues discussed:

  • Wholesale Markets: towards nutritious food for all 
    • Fabio Massimo Pallottini, Chairman ITALMERCATI, Italian Wholesale Market network
    • Andrea Segrè, Department of Agricultural and Food Sciences University “Alma Mater Studiorum”, Chairman CAAB Wholesale Marker Bologna, Italy
    • Boitshepo Giyose, Senior Nutrition Officer, Nutrition and Food System, Division – FAO
    • Donald Hyslop, Chair of Trustees at Bourough Market, London, United Kingdom
    • Jagvir Singh Yadav, CEO, Premium Market, New Delhi, India
  • The Organics for wholesale markets
    • Stéphane Layani, Chairman Semmaris – Rungis Market –Paris, France
    • Luca Bianchi, Secretariat of the Civil Society Mechanism (CSM) for relations to the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS)
    • Ilenio Bastoni, Chairman APO Fruit, Developing initiative for organic products: the case of Associazione produttori Ortofrutticoli, Italy
    • Josep Tejedo Fernández- Managing Director Mercabarna – Barcelona, Spain
    • Matt Elliott, CEO, Melbourne Market Authority, Australia
  • Wholesale and Retail States from the cold chain and transhipment logistic market
    • Eliane Steinmeyer, Managing Director, Hamburg Market, Germany
    • Zengjun Ma, Chairman China National Agri Wholesale Market Assn.                           CAWA, China
    • Florence Tartanac, Senior Officer and Group Leader of the Market Linkages and Value Chain Group in the Nutrition and Food Systems Division of FAO
    • Gustavo Alberto França Fonseca, Centrais de Abastecimento de Minas Gerais S/A and ABRACEN President (Brazilian Association of Wholesale Markets), Brazil
    • Gèrald Alexandre Cavalier, the CEO of French Cold Chain Association, CEO of the Technical Center CEMAFROID, France
    • Francesco Maria di Majo, President of the Port Network Authority Of The Northern Central Tyrrhenian Sea, Italy
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