The Institute of Human Nutrition and Food, College of Human Ecology, University of the Philippines Los Banos recognizes the significance of integrated and interdisciplinary approaches to promoting optimal nutrition and transforming food systems challenged by increasing population, climate change, ecosystem degradation, and scarcity in land and energy. Through the years, econutrition, a holistic approach to understanding interactions between nutrition and the environment, has been used as one of IHNF’s guiding frameworks in its trilogy of function – Teaching, Research, and Extension. Econutrition encompasses interrelationships among nutrition and human health, agriculture and food production, environmental health, and economic development.
In addition to econutrition, the Theory of Disruptive Innovation which is described as the process by which simple, affordable innovations replace expensive, complex systems and products, thereby increasing accessibility and affordability for all, can provide accessible and affordable solutions to food insecurity and malnutrition. Disruptive innovations simplify complex and expensive systems through enabling policies, infrastructure, technology, public-private partnerships, collaboration with the academe, and research utilization. Nutrigenomics, food innovations, food sensing technologies, microbiome research, mobile service delivery, and data analytics are some potential breakthroughs that drive rapid progress towards sustainability, inclusivity, and efficiency of food systems, as well as improved health and nutrition. The adoption of econutrition and application of disruptive innovations are envisioned to further contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Zero Hunger Challenge, and the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition 2016-2025.
The 3rd Southeast Asian Conference on Econutrition will provide a venue for sharing state-of-the-art information on disruptive innovations in food and nutrition. Specifically, it aims to identify emerging technological innovations that can have a profound impact on food systems, food security, and nutrition; to examine the agricultural, economic, environmental, and health advantages of adopting disruptive innovations and enabling actions that can support and scale them; draw lessons from country experiences; and to provide a set of recommendations and strategies for more effective use of econutrition.
The conference intends to provide a venue for sharing state of the art information on disruptive innovations in nutrition. The specific objectives are to:
- identify emerging technology innovations that can have profound impact on food systems, food security, and nutrition to achieve the SDGs;
- examine the agriculture, economic, environmental and health benefits that could be realized through the adoption of certain technologies and enabling actions that can support and scale them;
- present different experiences on econutrition as used in improving food systems;
- draw lessons from country experiences; and
- 5. provide a set of recommendations and strategies for more effective use of econutrition.