Global Food Challenge

Global Food Challenge

Posted: Updated:

May 20, 2016

The global demand for food is forecast to surge by the year 2050, with a projected world population of 10 billion people. That will require a 70% increase in food production. 

In an effort to help build leaders who provide that food, Land O’Lakes has launched the Global Food Challenge

Each year, 10 college students are selected for the Global Food Challenge as Emerging Leaders for food security.  Together, working with academic mentors, they explore food security issues and agricultural hurdles.  Blake Schweiner is a student at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. 

“I’ve been learning about the planting processes over in Africa and Asian countries," says Schweiner, "and how we need to step it up and getting this knowledge really opens my eyes to what can be done..  like the potential out there”

As a chemical engineering and chemistry major, Schweiner was initially surprised what his generation can do now, to meet global demands in three decades.  

"Thirty years sounds like, well, I’m 20 years old right now ‘it’s so far away,’" explains Schweiner, "but the amount we have to do in that amount of time is almost unfathomable.  So we’re trying to start as soon as possible and get something kick-started going fairly quickly and work together to get people involved." 

Read Schweiner's blog on his experience as an Emerging Leader.

To learn about hunger, agriculture and sustainability, the students travel to key Land O’Lakes locations, Washington, DC, and rural African communities.  The participants present final projects at the close of the internship year.

Applications for the next class of Emerging Leaders will be accepted August 25 - October 31. Get more info on Emerging Leaders.


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