DuPont Executive Vice President James C. Borel urged young people to become leaders in the greatest challenge facing our time – ensuring food security for 9 billion people in 2050. Borel spoke at the International Food and Agribusiness Management Association (IFAMA) Conference in Atlanta, about urgent need for students to contribute their time and talents to create solutions that are local, science-based, sustainable and reached in collaboration with others.

“Food is one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century. We need bright young people to understand how much they can contribute to feeding a growing world – and how rewarding it can be,” Borel said. “We need a new generation of food visionaries who can see the tremendous opportunity made possible by the simple fact that people have to eat.”

The 2013 IFAMA Conference focused on how to best attract, educate and retain the talent necessary to create sustained food security and economic growth to meet the needs of a rapidly growing population. “We must assure that the best minds and brightest thinkers of the next generation are fully engaged in addressing food security locally – from science and technology, transportation and logistics, and government and regulatory policy,” Borel said.

This year’s IFAMA Conference, for the first time, included a workshop on the Global Food Security Index to facilitate dialogue about measuring food affordability, availability, safety and quality on a country-by-country basis. Developed by the Economist Intelligence Unit and commissioned by DuPont, the Global Food Security Index allows us to see the magnitude of food security issues and set realistic and sustainable goals to address them.

“We want everyone from business leaders and policy makers to academics and students to use the Global Food Security Index in their research and classrooms to help promote understanding of the core issues surrounding food security at the local level,” said Borel.

DuPont has committed to engage more than 2 million young people in food and agriculture educational opportunities by 2020 as one of the company's food goals unveiled in 2012. A fast-growing world population coupled with increasing urbanization and protein demands are driving the need for more talented young people to consider careers in food and agriculture.