Consumer Goods Forum Sustainable Retail Summit - Day Two Review

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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  • The second and final day of the Consumer Foods Forum Sustainable Retail Summit, which took place in Berlin yesterday, saw no shortage of thought-provoking insights, best practice sharing and discussion of the hard truths in health and sustainability that face the retail and consumer goods industries.

    Moderator Tom Heap commenced proceedings with a Start-Up Pitch Battle, a new addition to this year’s programme, which brought together speakers from five start-ups, including Too Good To Go, Evigence, Why Waste, Contronics and Rubikloud, to pitch their innovative solutions to tackling food waste to a panel of industry experts.

    Sustainable Communication

    Tom Heap then opened the first Breakout Session of the day on the role of communication and marketing in telling stories about sustainable business practices.

    As part of this, Perrine Bouhana, GlobeScan, introduce her company’s consumer insights report on Sustainable & Healthy Living, a study of 25,000 consumers from around the world.

    This was followed by Jo Rallig, The Food Foundation and Veg Power, presenting VegPower’s work to get more people to eat more vegetables. The Breakout ended with Dean Sanders, Anthesis, exploring the story behind brands, and the powerful stories that can be told.


    Promoting Collaboration

    Experts took a deep dive into driving collaboration and enabling health in the second Breakout Session, where Khaled Tawfik, BCG, presented learnings from the Collaboration for Healthier Lives initiative (CHL) in the UK.

    Initial findings from a consumer insights survey were then shared by Sandra Braeunlein-Reuss, Nielsen, and Tanmay Jain, BCG. Maggie Biscarr, PepsiCo, then took to the stage to share the CHL US “One for Good” case study in Hagerstown, followed by Nikta Vaghefi, Groupe Savencia, and Thomas Kyriaco, Danone, sharing learnings from the CHL France “On S’y Met” initiative. Rosie Warin, Kin & Co, delved into the importance of employee health and wellbeing and the session concluded with a panel discussion including Demir Aytaç, Migros Ticaret A.S., Bertrand Swiderski, Carrefour and Marion Caillard, Mediaperformances.

    The third Breakout of the day saw expert speakers come together to present and debate consumer trends and innovative, yet realistic solutions for the future of protein.

    Sarah Blanchard from METRO AG kicked the session off by sharing some of her company’s findings regarding shifting consumer preferences and trends. She expressed her wish for a future where people have a much more varied diet, as diversity is the secret to everything.


    Vincent Doumeizel from Lloyd’s Register Foundation made a strong case for seaweed and algae for both animal feed and human consumption. Tarique Arsiwalla from Protix then took to the stage and spoke about the consumption of insects, adding to the lively conversation on innovative protein sources.

    Food Waste

    Paul Crewe, Anthesis Group, introduced the fourth Breakout Session of the day by noting his long-standing involvement with the CGF’s environmental work. Ignacio Gavilan, the CGF, then updated delegates on the CGF’s work on waste.

    Veronika Pountcheva, METRO AG, then spoke more on food waste saying METRO decided to look on the inside and outside of their blue box stores. Gökmen Güven, Wholesurplus, presented his company as a one-stop waste management platform.

    Mette Lykke, Too Good to Go, then looked at how we need to fight food waste together. David Kat, Wasteless, went on to take a closer look at the cost of food waste, before Eric Hannon, McKinsey & Company, helped move the conversation on to the plastic waste challenge. Tim Brett, The Coca-Cola Company, looked at how his company is working towards a world without waste.


    Embracing Solutions

    In the Closing Plenary, leading thinker on food and cities, Carolyn Steel, delved into the critical questions surrounding the world’s population’s access to food, the planet, and the future. She highlighted that food shapes everything, and if we value food, we can shape the world.

    Sebastian Grieme, Fridays for Future activist then talked to delegates about the growing momentum of the youth movement. He sent a strong and clear message to delegates: it is up to you whether you want to be part of the problem or the solution.

    Arctic explorer, Vincent Colliard, was the last speaker to take the stage, telling delegates about his explorations to the Arctic and the visible effects of climate change on landscapes and ecosystems. He closed by telling delegates that corporations now have a great opportunity to grow their business with conviction and be more responsible.

    The 2020 edition of the Consumer Goods Forum Sustainable Retail Summit will take place in Amsterdam next October. For more information, visit

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