Events and insight for sustainability

Can innovation and technology make agriculture sustainable?

Can innovation and technology make agriculture sustainable?

How to scale solutions that win for farmers, food and the planet

5-6 April 2018, Washington DC

A two-day conference on the big challenges for agriculture, and the solutions that will scale. Researched and organized by Innovation Forum, held in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy

This two-day business forum is designed to provide leading discussion and debate around how to leverage technology, climate-smart agriculture and cross-sector collaborations to improve sustainable farming, deliver against company objectives and balance positive impact for farmers, businesses and the planet.

We will cover important questions by taking a practical look at a wide range of solutions in AgTech, Climate Smart Agriculture, Standards, Benchmarks, Corporate Case Studies, and Finance. The focus will be on the solutions that companies and organizations can scale for sustainable agriculture and food security.

We will cover the big issues facing the industry, including:

  • AgTech: Are the AgTech revolution’s cross-sector collaborations win-win-win for farmers, businesses, and the planet? 
  • Climate smart agriculture: What are the emerging climate resilient strategies based on US commodities?
  • Policy to implementation: An in-depth look at how Mars plans to deliver on ambitious targets and drive a transformation of agricultural supply chains
  • The GE debate: A pragmatic discussion around the ethical implications and how they sit with the potential and scale of GE
  • Public-private sector collaborations: How are partnerships between NGOs and private sector companies delivering on key sustainability targets?
  • Biotech and organics: Can they work together to revolutionize our food and farming system?

Through a series of practical, hands-on working groups, we will also discuss:

  • Water risk management: What are the leading practices and technologies for water use efficiency? A look at the practicalities and how they apply to your business
  • Animal welfare: How is animal welfare having profound implications for corporate costs, revenues, assets, brand image and reputation?
  • Organic Agriculture 101: What are the USDA Organic Standards? How do you verify organic supply chains?
  • The future of food: animal free? How will plant based meats impact sustainable agriculture?

See the full range of topics in the agenda here

Speakers include

Matt Carstens

Matt Carstens

Senior Vice President for Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN

Land O'Lakes

Katherine Neebe

Katherine Neebe

Director of Sustainability, Stakeholder Engagement


Kim Stackhouse-Lawson

Kim Stackhouse-Lawson

Director of Sustainability


Kristen Rainey

Kristen Rainey

Global Procurement & Resource Utilization Manager

Google Food

Ashley Allen

Ashley Allen

Climate and Land Senior Manager


Michael Doane

Michael Doane

Managing Director for Agriculture and Food Systems

The Nature Conservancy

See the full list of confirmed speakers here

Why attend?

  • Get access to the latest research, progress and innovation around the improvement of sustainable agriculture and future of food security
  • Meet and network with an influential, highly relevant audience of key stakeholders, including NGOs, business, government, supply chain actors and investors
  • Hear from senior experts and practitioners, around their latest work, successes and lessons learned in implementing sustainable agriculture practices

Who attends?

120 senior professionals from agriculture and food businesses and organizations. The conference attracts managers, directors and senior vice presidents of sustainability, procurement leaders, policymakers, and investors. The companies that attend represent a cross-section of critical stakeholders within the food, retail and agricultural industry sectors, including multinational food, agribusiness, AgTech brands, retailers, traders, key NGOs, finance and government representatives.

What’s different about this forum?

IF is NOT:

  • A PR platform: enthusiastic speakers are NOT given free rein to fill a session presenting their companies, allowing no time to actually get to the crux of the issues. 
  • A talking shop: this is NOT an opportunity for a group people in a room to simply agree with everything said, regardless of outcomes.
  • All promise, no delivery: we will NOT promise what we can’t deliver. The issues covered are complex. They won’t be solved at a two-day conference. But we will help deliver progress through in-depth, constructive and practical advice around specific issues.  

IF is:

  • Candid: Entirely off-the-record discussion that enables open and honest disclosure from speakers and genuine participation from the audience.
  • Practical: A clear focus on the practical and actionable guidance that can drive change throughout industries and supply chains.
  • Focused: We provide enough time, resources and expertise to the issues that really matter. We don’t skate the surface, but get to the crux of the issues to provide in-depth, constructive discussion.

How to get involved?

Delegate registration is now open. We are also seeking conference sponsors and marketing partners.   

If you would like to get involved, or have any questions around the forum, please do get in touch on the details below. 

Azadeh Ardakani | Project Director

Phone: 1-604-220-1731



Hosted by and in partnership with:

The Nature Conservancy

Supporting partners:

Marketing partners:

Brochure thumbnail

Download the conference brochure