Press Release: Open Forum on Food

Time: Friday April 15, 2011 - actual event time - the live webcast is from 10am to 12 noon. 

Introduction - FANRPAN Perspective: 
The CEO of FANRPAN will form part of a panel of a live broadcast at the World Bank headquarters in Washington, DC. She will stage the platform with eminent speakers, including David Beckman of BREAD. 

The Open Forum on Food will be staged in the Preston Auditorium from 10am to 12 noon. The moderator for the event will be the BBC's Matt Frei. The event will be filmed before a live audience of about 120 guests... and it will be streamed live to an on-line audience. 

The Event itself: 
Promotion of the event has already been underway via the World Bank's social media platforms, urging people to send their ideas/comments/solutions about rising and volatile food prices. This can be viewed at

There will also be a 24 hour global chat forum from April 14, starting at 12pm EDT. 

The two panels for the live webcast: on April 15 beginning at 10am. 

Panel One: The Food Burden 
This panel will examine the current state of play - It will look at the impact of rising and volatile food prices; what are the key drivers behind the price hikes? It is speculators or as a result of climate change with weather shocks adversely affecting crops? How are people being impacted on the ground? 

The Panel: 
World Bank Managing Director, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala ; Rwanda's Agricultural Minister, Dr Agnes Matilda Kalibata, World Food Program Executive Director, Josette Sheeran; Economist/Secretary of the Intergovernmental Group (IGG) on Grains Abdolreza Abbassian of FAO; Tom Arnold CEO of CONCERN; Gavin Maguire, Agriculture Markets columnist, Thomson Reuters, and Professor Calestous Juma of Harvard University and the Gates Foundation. 

Panel Two: Feeding a Hungry World – the solutions? 
The second panel... Feeding A Hungry World – will focus more on solutions to the problem of rising and volatile food prices. What is needed and what works – for example, new technologies for farmers: can Africa in fact feed itself; what's the view of the private sector; what else needs to be done to ensure that we can deliver food for this generation and the next? 

The panel: 
Dr Agnes Kilbata, Minister of Agriculture Rwanda; WFP's Josette Sheeran ; World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development, Inger Andersen; Prof Juma of Harvard University; Dr Lindiwe Sibanda, CEO of FANRPAN, Dr Scott Loarie of the Carnegie Institution for Science at Harvard, Thomas Erickson, VP Bunge North America, and David Beckman BREAD. 

About the moderator for both panels: BBC's Matt Frei 
Matt Frei is the anchor of BBC World News America, the BBC's first U.S. facing nightly newscast. Matt Frei anchors BBC World News America from the studio in Washington DC. He interviews newsmakers and leads roundtable discussions featuring expert opinion from commentators and major players. Prior to taking up this post in 2007, Matt had been the BBC's Washington Correspondent since 2003 reporting on major events including Hurricane Katrina and the 2004 Presidential election. Before arriving in Washington, Matt was the BBC's Asia Correspondent based in Singapore and Hong Kong, taking up his post just before the handover to China. Matt's earlier assignments included covering the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 as the BBC's Bonn Correspondent as well as the collapse of the former Yugoslavia and the upheavals in Algeria and Libya while he was South European Correspondent from 1992 to 1996. Closer to his base in Rome, he also covered the battle against the mafia. 

Media opportunities: 
Dr Sibanda will be back in South Africa on 18 April 2011 and will be available for an interview/media briefing. Please contact me if you should require an interview with Dr Sibanda on this thought-provoking topic. 

Released by: 
Yuven Gounden 
Communication and Advocacy Manager 
Food, Agriculture, Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN) 
141 Cresswell Street Weavind Park 0184 
Private Bag X2087 Silverton 0127 
+27 12 804 2966/ 804 3186 (Tel) 
+27 12 804 0600 (Fax) 

For more information contact: 
Dr Lindiwe Majele Sibanda 
Food, Agriculture, Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN) 
141 Cresswell Street Weavind Park 0184 
Private Bag X2087 Silverton 0127 
+27 12 804 2966/ 804 3186 (Tel) 
+27 12 804 0600 (Fax)