World Economic Forum 2024 in Davos
New Age of Agriculture: Exploring the Global FieldID™ Initiative at WEF Davos 2024 for Sustainable and Secure Food Production and Climate Action
Weiz (Austria), 16th January 2024
Author: Gottfried Pessl, CEO and Founder of Pessl Instruments
Yesterday, I was in Davos for the World Economic Forum (WEF) for the first time in my life, and I was amazed by the spirit in this snowy Alpine village in Switzerland, near the Austrian border.
This year’s theme of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2024 in Davos is “Rebuilding Trust,” underscoring the necessity of rebuilding trust in the face of major threats such as disinformation, extreme weather events, climate change, and mounting geopolitical crises.
The World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos has addressed key events in world history over the last fifty years, from the fall of the Berlin Wall to the rise of economic globalization. We hope that 2024 will be another positive EUREKA moment, helping us find our way back to more trust and collaboration to address our most critical pending problems: climate change and food security.
I was thrilled to be invited to a working dinner organized by Yara International, one of the world’s largest fertilizer manufacturers. Yara International produces, distributes, and sells nitrogen-based mineral fertilizers and related industrial products.
The purpose of the dinner was to co-create new ideas with other industry leaders, NGOs, and governments. The focus was on The Worldwide Field ID initiative.
The idea is as revolutionary as the introduction of the Internet IP Address. VARDA’s Global Field ID is an API-based system that assigns a unique ID number to every agricultural land plot, enabling field identification of agricultural land plots globally. This allows farmers, bankers, insurers, governments, food companies, supermarkets, consumers, etc., to use this basic information to improve traceability, enhance on-farm operations, create a sustainable food chain, promote large-scale collaboration, and protect privacy.
At my table, I had intensive discussions over a delicious vegetarian dinner about these pending problems with a C-Level executive from Rabobank, the CEO from Swiss RE, a managing partner at Bain & Company (a global management consulting firm), the special envoy of the US president for Climate Change – David Livingston, and the founder and CEO of Vivent, a Swiss-based deep tech SME.
The bottom line of the discussion was clear: collaboration among various stakeholders is key.
Keep it simple, easy, and fully automatic. Ensure it is farmer-centric, under their control in terms of how information flows. Governments need to provide the framework – having this will be accepted by all stakeholders in the value chain.
A big thanks to Svein Tore Holsether, the CEO of Yara International, and Davide Ceper, the CEO of VARDA, for putting together this event.
The following action points have been agreed upon:
- Join a core group for a 3–5-month co-creation phase.
- Mobilize executive commitment and resources.
- Contribute to an advisory process.
Pessl Instruments and I, as CEO and Founder, will be fully committed and working towards these common goals.