Why you should care about the World Food Prize

By Brandie Piper

This week scientists, academics, government officials and non-governmental organization representatives will gather in Des Moines, Iowa to honor the 2015 World Food Prize winner, Sir Fazle Hasan Abed. Established in 1986 by Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, the World Food Prize is often called the “Nobel Prize for food and agriculture.”

Borlaug wanted to recognize individuals who make contributions that positively affect the global food supply. Over the years, World Food Prize laureates from around the world have been honored for improving the quality and quantity of available food, including Monsanto’s Chief Technology Officer Dr. Robert Fraley, who was awarded the prize in 2013 for his work in founding, developing, and applying modern agricultural biotechnology to help farmers have better harvests around the world.

The World Food Prize ceremony is part of a series of events focused on improving food security. Experts will meet for several panel discussions on topics ranging from inspiring young women to pursue careers in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) to food security in Ebola-affected countries.

Three scientists from Monsanto are attending the World Food Prize panels. On Wednesday, Dr. Fraley took part in the “Girls in STEM” panel. Later in the week Dr. Sherri Brown, vice president of science strategy, will be part of the discussion “Feed. Nourish. Thrive.” and Michael K. Stern, president and chief operating officer of The Climate Corporation, will participate in the talk about precision agriculture and data.

The week will conclude with a ceremony honoring Sir Fazle Hasan Abed of Bangladesh. Abed is the founder and chairperson of BRAC, which aims to eliminate poverty and help the poor.

Six facts about the World Food Prize and its laureates:

For more information, visit the World Food Prize’s website, and follow @WorldFoodPrize and #foodprize15 on Twitter.

Published Oct. 14, 2015 on Discover.Monsanto.com.

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