How Consumer Trends Influence Food Production

Rodrigo Santibanez) My name is Rodrigo Santibanez. I’m the Director of Global Food Chain Affairs at Merck Animal Health. I ‘m here with the Agricultural Council of Kansas City to talk about how consumer trends are influencing food production and animal agriculture. As we see how the food trends are evolving very fast, and consumers are starting to demand free from antibiotics, hormones, etc., and we as an industry need to be careful that we are, also as we provide choice, that we are providing and satisfying the demand of people that needs to afford food. It is important that we work together, animal production, food production, to make sure that we satisfy the choice of those who can afford, but that in doing that we don’t’ forget about those that need to satisfy the demand of quality food for every day. As our population grows we go into a food paradox. There is a bunch of things that we don’t want in the food but as we increase the amount of people around the world, and the food that is going to be needed to be produced to satisfy that demand, technologies are going to play a key role for the industry – food industry and animal industry – to be productive. Without the technologies, in today’s world, it will be very difficult to be able to satisfy the population, the needs of food for the population, not only to 2050 but also in the closer years. We need to think on how we use water, how we use land, and how we use resources, natural resources, to grow the food that we need to produce. Without technologies it’s going to be challenging for sure in two aspects. One, their affordability, with the price of food, which is a given for developed countries, and then the availability of food for those countries that are not as developed as, for example, the US or Europe. The people in those countries are happy to have the food. If we cut the technologies we’re really cutting them off from food, from animal protein.

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