Placing a different perspective on worldwide hunger will be necessary to keep a growing population away from the food insecurity tipping point, according to Elanco CEO Jeff Simmons.
Simmons, who was named the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology 2013 Borlaug CAST Communication Award winner earlier this year, presented on his view of changing picture of food security in a webcast discussion coinciding with the 2013 Borlaug Dialogues in Des Moines, Iowa, on Wednesday.
The award is given each year to a specialist who is able to communicate the importance of food and agricultural science and technology to various audiences.
Simmons studied marketing and agricultural economics at Cornell, and has developed presentations based on two white papers directly relating to hunger solutions. He spoke Wednesday on his latest white paper, "Enough is Enough – The Fight for a Food Secure Tomorrow."
In his presentation, Simmons suggested there are six faces of food security – the collapse, the deficiency, the hunt, the edge, the quality and the tradition.
The categories ranged from complete food insecurity – having little to no food – to having food that does not meet appropriate quality standards. Simmons cited short stories from each category, including anecdotes from students in third-world countries that rely on rice and beans to mothers in Indianapolis that have no access to fresh produce.
"We've spent maybe too much time talking about the extremeness of hunger. And doing a lot of communicating in the last three years I'm finding there's a lot of numbness to that," Simmons said, explaining that hunger should be put into terms that everybody can relate to, much like the six categories he previously mentioned.