You are likely to be hearing more and more about Ultra Processed Foods (UPFs). The science is moving fast. It is becoming clearer how harmful UPF is to the health of people and planet. Yet debates about changing the way we eat and produce food are stuck. Government and businesses are just not acting fast enough. With evidence mounting, we’re at a fork in the road. Will we carry on as we are, knowingly harming people and planet? Or is it time for a different path towards a healthier, greener and fairer future?
Join us, along with some of the leading voices in this debate, to discuss things we must do to set a different course.
Dr Chris van Tulleken is an infectious diseases doctor at The Hospital for Tropical Diseases in London. He trained in medicine at Oxford and has a PhD from University College London, where he is an Associate Professor. His research focuses on how corporations affect human health especially in the context of child nutrition, and he works with UNICEF and The World Health Organisation on this area. As one of the BBC’s leading broadcasters for children and adults, his work has won two BAFTAs and he is the author of the Sunday Times and New York Times bestseller, Ultra-Processed People.
Baroness Rosie Boycott is a member of the House of Lords and has a long and distinguished career as a journalist, publisher and author, including having been the editor of several national newspapers in the UK. In 2008 she was appointed as Chair of the London Food Board to advise the Mayor of London on sustainable food policy implementation in the capital. In October 2016, the new Mayor of London Sadiq Khan asked Rosie to lead the development of a new London Food Strategy to help the food system to work better to meet the needs of everyone who lives and works in London. In 2018 Rosie became a member of the House of Lords after leaving the London Food board and she continues to write regularly and speak all over the world about the role of cities, and the importance of food in combating hunger and food insecurity, improving health, tackling childhood obesity and helping to reduce carbon emissions contributing to climate change.
Professor Tim Benton leads the Energy, Environment and Resources programme at Chatham House. He joined Chatham House in 2016 as a distinguished visiting fellow, when he was also dean of strategic research initiatives at the University of Leeds, where he still remains a professor. From 2011-2016 he was the “champion” of the UK’s Global Food Security programme which was a multi-agency partnership of the UK’s public bodies (government departments, devolved governments and research councils) with an interest in the challenges around food. He has worked with UK governments, the EU and G20. He has been a global agenda steward of the World Economic Forum, and is an author of the IPCC’s Special Report on Food, Land and Climate (2019), and the UK’s Climate Change Risk Assessment.
Eddie Abbew is a prominent figure in bodybuilding community. He is known for his views on nutrition and processed foods. emphasising the importance of healthy eating. Abbew advocates for a diet that includes animal fat as a primary source of nutrition and recommends avoiding processed and ultra-processed foods, often discussing their connection with increasing disease. Rob Percival is Head of Food Policy at the Soil Association, a charity advocating for healthy and sustainable food and farming. He leads the organisation’s campaigns and advocacy for dietary and food system change, with a focus on ultra-processed foods and industrial livestock. He is also the author of ‘The Meat Paradox’, a book that explores the cultural complexity of meat.
Rob Percival is Head of Food Policy at the Soil Association, a charity advocating for healthy and sustainable food and farming. He leads the organisation’s campaigns and advocacy for dietary and food system change, with a focus on ultra-processed foods and industrial livestock. He is also the author of ‘The Meat Paradox’, a book that explores the cultural complexity of meat.
Sue Pritchard is the Chief Executive of the Food, Farming and Countryside Commission. Sue leads the organisation in its mission to bring people together to act on the climate, nature and health crises, through fairer and more sustainable food systems, and a just transition for rural communities and the countryside. Sue’s background is in combined research and practice in leadership and organisation development for systems change, working with leaders across public, private and not for profit organisations, especially on complex partnership projects. She is a Trustee of CoFarm Foundation and is an independent Governor at Royal Agricultural University. Living on an organic farm in Wales, Sue and her family raise livestock and farm for conservation.
Rachel Sylvester is a Times columnist and chair of The Times Health Commission and Times Education commission . She started writing about politics in 1996 and was a lobby correspondent on The Daily Telegraph before becoming political editor of The Independent on Sunday. She joined The Times in 2008. She also hosts the What I Wish I’d Known podcast.
This event was in collaboration with the Food, Farming & Countryside Commission