Harvest for Health: Improving Wellbeing through Resilient Agriculture

7:30 am - 2:30 pm MT
The National Academy of Sciences Building
2101 Constitution Avenue, NW Washington, DC

  • Convening Event

Diverse Sources of Enhanced Nutrition

In the United States, several public health investments target minimally processed foods and consumer education promoting increased fruit, vegetable, and whole food consumption. And while laudable and necessary, there has been limited focus on linking sustainable and resilient agriculture, consumer preferences and health.

To begin shifting aspects of our modern agricultural system to producing more nutritious foods that meet the demands of consumers and food companies, we held the Harvest for Health convening to uncover opportunities for audacious research that could lead to effective and evidence-based solutions to incorporating underutilized crops into the food system.

The goals of the event were to identify research gaps where our support would have the greatest impact and lead to the use of healthy and resilient underutilized crops as food ingredients, and explore partnerships that would strengthen links between resilient production agriculture, food and health as part of the Harvest for Health initiative.

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Download Agenda PDF.


Thursday, January 31

7:30-8:30 AM Breakfast
  8:30 Welcome and Opening RemarksSally Rockey, PhD, FFAR Executive Director
  8:45 Overview of the Agenda and Meeting LogisticsHannah Wilkinson, FFAR Scientific Program Officer
  8:55 Keynote Address: Making Food Systems a Solution to Accommodating Healthy Eating Patterns and Reduced Risk of Diet-Related Illnesses and Human Health Disparities – Steven R. Shafer, PhD, ret., Soil Health Institute and U.S. Dept. of Agriculture
  9:30 Consumer Dietary Trends and Concerns, Including Innovations in Development of New Products that Deliver Health and WellbeingMindy Hermann, Consultant Analyst and Communications Specialist, Innova Market Insights
10:00 Meeting Consumer and Community Health Needs: How to Increase Nutrient Density in Food SupplyMaha Tahiri, PhD, Adjunct Professor, Tufts University
10:30 Coffee Break
10:45 Addressing Product Reformulation through Crops Diversification: Emerging Nutritious Crops and Their Contribution to Future Agriculture Sean Mayes, PhD, University of Nottingham
11:05 Addressing Product Reformulation through Crops Diversification: Processor/Manufacturer Considerations Richard Black, PhD, Quadrant D Consulting
11:25 Maintaining Bioactive Components throughout ProcessingMario Ferruzzi, PhD, North Carolina State University
11:45 Panel Discussion – Moderator: John Reich, PhD, FFAR Scientific Program Director
12:30–1:45 PM Lunch
1:45 Breakout Group Discussions: Identifying Research Gaps and Opportunities
3:45 Coffee Break
4:00 Reports from Breakout Groups
5:15–7:00 Reception


Friday, February 1

 7:30-8:30 AM Breakfast
  8:30 Recap of Day 1
  Scaling up Ag Production of Nutritious and Emerging Crops:
  8:50 Lessons learned from biofortificationHowarth (Howdy) Bouis, PhD, Harvest Plus
  9:10 Lessons learned from quinoaSven-Eric Jacobsen, Univ. of Copenhagen
  9:30 Lessons learned from Bambara groundnutSean Mayes, PhD, University of Nottingham
  9:50 Farmer considerationsKevin Murphy, PhD, Washington State University
10:10 Coffee Break
10:30 Panel Discussion
11:10 Breakout Group Discussions: Prioritization of Research Gaps and Strategies for Moving Forward

(Includes working lunch)

1:15 Reports from Breakout Groups
2:00 Coffee Break
2:15 Summary and Closing RemarksSally Rockey, PhD
2:30 Adjourn

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