London Food Tech Week - the world’s largest week-long showcase of the latest cutting-edge food trends and technology - has unveiled its programme of events for 2017.
As the global stage for Food Tech, the week attracts Food Tech start-ups, businesses and investors from around the world, and takes place between October 30 and November 4.
The line-up features keynote speakers from all corners of the globe, investor drop-ins for startups, case studies profiling big and small businesses that worked together successfully to solve challenges in the Food Industry and community events hosted by some of the UK’s top Food Tech companies.
A Future of Tech Showcase is being launched on the Tuesday highlighting food technology that has never been seen before in the UK. Between Thursday and Saturday, the public will be invited to experience a UK-first at Borough Market - the details of which will be revealed soon.
Each day represents a different theme based on what YFood believes will be the key talking points over the next year in the world of Food Tech and the food industry.
Monday October 30: The Hyper R(E)volution of Eating. The week kicks off with a day exploring the very latest trends and innovations in health, wellness and consumer eating habits. It will examine how food and tech can work together to empower a preventative rather than curative approach to health and will explore innovations such as optimised nutrition and plant-based technologies.
One of the keynote speakers is Daniel Vennard, Program Director at the World Resources Institute. He runs the Better Buying Lab which works with large food companies and experts in behaviour change and marketing to develop, test and scale new ideas that help shift consumers towards eating more sustainable diets. He will be announcing a pioneering new way of drawing people towards more of a plant-based diet, the details of which will be revealed soon.
Tuesday October 31: The Tech Food Reality. This theme looks at how people’s experiences with food are being taken to new levels using tech, including the latest developments in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR).
One of the speakers on this day is Professor Charles Spence who is head of the Crossmodal Research Laboratory at Oxford University. His work focuses on the design of enhanced multisensory food and drink experiences through collaborations with chefs, baristas, mixologists and even perfumiers. His keynote will explore how our increasing understanding of the human mind can influence the design of environments, foods and products to support the expanding experience economy.
Wednesday November 1: Voting With Their Forks. Today will examine how people are demanding change when it comes to the food they have access to – and crucially, why corporate social responsibility (CSR), in the most traditional sense, no longer goes far enough.
Attendees will hear a keynote from Paul Newnham who is part of the UN’s SDG 2 Advocacy hub coordinating global campaigning and advocacy to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2. Paul’s talk will take attendees of a whistle stop tour around the planet to explore the exciting social enterprise models that are helping solve the global food shortage crisis in commercial, scalable, sustainable and sometimes unexpected ways.
Thursday November 2: The Tables Are Turning. What does the future of eating in the home and in restaurants bring? Aimed at chefs, restaurant owners and the hospitality industry, this day will explore the emerging technologies that will change and enhance the way consumers experience food.
With growing competition in the form of delivery and recipe boxes, people want to get more out of their dining experiences when choosing to leave the home or go on holiday. Today, attendees will hear from Airbnb’s Global Head of Food, David McIntyre who oversees all things food for Airbnb, including business development for the Experiences platform. David will be explore how the ultimate buzzword for the hospitality industry in 2017 is ‘Experience’.
Friday November 3: Smart Food Cities. With a growing global population moving increasingly towards urbanisation, this day’s events will explore the role cities will play in helping us survive, adapt and change to cope with the ever increasing food demand.
One of today’s keynotes is from Dr Gary Stutte who led research at NASA to develop safe and sustainable food production systems for space missions to the Moon, Mars, and beyond. During his talk, Gary will break down exactly what it will take to feed nine billion people by 2050 and how we might one day actually grow plants in space. Attendees will also hear from Leonie Cooper, Chair of the Environment Committee at London City Hall, on how the capital aims to be one of the world’s greenest cities - and what it takes to achieve that status.
Nadia El Hadery, founder and CEO at YFood, which organises London Food Tech Week, said: “This year’s London Food Tech Week promises to showcase all the trends and innovative companies that are transforming our food ecosystem using technology. This is far from a conference. This is a week-long festival celebrating and connecting the incredible people and innovations that are helping us make huge strides in Food Tech, revolutionising the way we buy and consume food. It’s a must-attend for startups, investors, brands, marketers and food manufacturers alike.”