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Agribusiness student heads to global summit on food security

08 May 2017

Agribusiness student Beth Hampton

University of Waikato agribusiness student Beth Hampton has been chosen to attend a global summit focused on one of the world's most pressing challenges - how do we feed a growing population?

Beth, 21, is one of two young New Zealanders chosen from 1,200 applicants worldwide to attend the Youth Ag-Summit 2017, being held 9-13 October in Brussels, Belgium.

The bi-annual event aims to inspire the next generation of young leaders working in agriculture to tackle the United Nations' goals of ending world hunger, achieving food security, and promoting sustainable agriculture. 

Aged 18 to 25, the 100 delegates hail from every corner of the globe - from Argentina to Zimbabwe. Their mission is to come up with innovative new ideas for solving global food security challenges, which can then be put into practice back home.

Beth, who grew up in Matamata, is in her final semester of a Bachelor of Science degree at Waikato, majoring in Agribusiness and Environmental Science.

She was selected to attend the Youth Ag-Summit after writing a 1,500-word essay about the UN's sustainable development goals and the role of youth in helping to feed a growing world population.

Beth is hugely excited about the opportunity to represent New Zealand at the summit, where delegates will hear from a range of international experts, and take part in group projects and industry tours.

“Food security is a global challenge and New Zealand has a role to play in addressing the issue," says Beth. "The summit will act as a chance to collaborate with an international cohort and I’m really looking forward to how it might challenge and develop my thinking about sustainable agriculture and issues of food security."

“I’m also very keen to hear different international perspectives regarding environmental and agriculture policy, and how they and subsequent experiences may relate to the New Zealand context," she says.

Hosted by Bayer, the Youth Ag-Summit forms part of the company's agricultural education programme, which aims to raise global awareness about farming and food supplies. 

"The Youth Ag-Summit will give young leaders the opportunity to foster their ideas, share best practices and explore the role of modern agriculture in feeding a hungry planet," says Scott Hanson, head of Bayer New Zealand Crop Science.

Follow the latest news about the summit on Facebook or Twitter @YouthAgSummit


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