Climate Change and the Future of Food Programming

From September 18th to September 22nd, students participated in programming that encouraged them to think about viable business solutions to challenges within the intersections of climate change and the food system.
September 07, 2023 10:22 PM
Students joined interdisciplinary panelists in a discussion on climate change and its implications on the food system, from the field to the table.
September 07, 2023 10:43 PM
Climate Change and the Future of Food Salon Sprint's first workshop, Design Thinking encouraged students to begin ideating impactful business solutions.
September 11, 2023 07:29 PM
The second workshop in the Climate Change & the Future of Food Salon Sprint week, the Theory of Change Workshop encouraged students to iterate their business solution's social impact.
September 11, 2023 07:25 PM
The third and final workshop in the Climate Change & the Future of Food Salon Sprint week, this workshop helped participants bring together all of the pieces from the previous sessions and identify a viable business model that will support their solution.
September 11, 2023 07:35 PM
The culmination of the Climate Change & the Future of Food Salon Sprint, the Pitch Competition was a showcase of the solutions that have been iterated during the week.

The Ongoing Challenge:

You have the power to drive innovation and implement solutions that can transform the future of food, making it more sustainable, equitable, and resilient in the face of climate change. By acting collectively and embracing innovation, you can lead the way toward a brighter, more sustainable future for food, the global economy, and the workforce.
Biodiversity Loss
Climate change poses a dire threat to biodiversity. The ramifications are substantial, as biodiversity loss disrupts essential ecological services like pollination and soil health maintenance. In turn, this loss leaves our food supply highly susceptible to the increased risks of pests and diseases.
Diverse Employment
The food system encompasses a broad spectrum of jobs, ranging from agricultural production to food processing, transportation, retailing, restaurants, and various related services. As per capita incomes rise, the share of employment in farming tends to decline, while the share in food manufacturing and services increases. Climate change can exacerbate these challenges by increasing the frequency and severity of weather-related risks.
Water Scarcity
Climate change plays a substantial role in driving water scarcity. This scarcity has a profound impact on critical aspects of our food systems, including crop irrigation and the availability of freshwater sources for drinking. Notably, water-intensive agriculture faces heightened vulnerability in this context, emphasizing the urgency of addressing these issues for the sustainability of our food supply.
Supply Chain Disruptions
The impact of extreme weather events on food supply chains cannot be underestimated. These disruptions have led to staggering statistics – global food prices remain 25% higher than pre-Covid-19 levels since early 2020, as reported by the United Nations Food Price Index. These price increases have rippling effects, causing food wastage, shortages, and mounting pressure on consumers' wallets.
Global Food Insecurity
According to the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World report, nearly 750 million people experienced severe food insecurity in 2019. Rising global temperatures are altering weather patterns, leading to more frequent heatwaves, heavy rainfall, and droughts. These events, coupled with other factors such as rising food commodity prices, pushed approximately 30 million additional people in low-income countries toward food insecurity in 2021.
Agricultural Production
Rising temperatures, erratic weather patterns, and extreme events like droughts and floods are affecting agricultural productivity. Crops are failing, and livestock are struggling to thrive, leading to food shortages and increased prices.