For the first year, a day entirely dedicated to the concept of "Nutritional Autonomy for All" brought about 350 participants together around 13 speakers, all coming from the humanitarian world, international organizations, the worlds of economics or research.
Nutriset, the company which organized this event, thus opened a multisectoral dialogue between the various stakeholders working in the field of malnutrition.
This day, facilitated by Christian Troubé, was organized around three round tables and the outlooks of François Lemarchand and Jean Ziegler.
"Building Nutritional Autonomy", the theme of the first round table, brought together 4 contributors in one debate: an African nutrition specialist from Unicef: Félicité Tchibindat, a president of a big international NGO: Benoît Miribel (ACF), a PlumpyField® network entrepreneur: Ismaël Barnou (STA) and a former ambassador in office in Africa for a long time: Pierre Jacquemot.
All, in their field, make the same observation and find themselves to affirm that, in the fight against hunger, the solutions are known. The knowledge is there, the skills are there. It's only a question of will, of mobilization. The problem can not be solved only by specialists and technicians.
Jean Ziegler's plea punctuated the debate just before the lunch break and the second round table.
"Today, the right to food is the most violated right in the world. 37,000 people die of hunger every day, whereas we could feed twice the current population, if we invested in local agriculture, if we stopped speculation on raw materials, if we gave significant budgets to international organizations, if put an end to cash crops and agrofuels, if we made it possible for small farmers to invest and perfect their techniques... In a democracy, there is no powerlessness. Let’s all swing into action! It is possible to destroy the cannibal order of the world!" Jean Ziegler.
The second round table was entitled "Does the 4th type company exist?". It brought 4 contributors together: Frédéric Dalsace: Associate Professor, "Social Business, Company and Poverty" HEC Chair, Guillaume Lefèbvre: Deputy Director of Crédit Agricole Normandie Seine, Olivier Gilbert: Delegate for Social Innovations of Veolia Environnement and Isabelle Lescanne: General Manager of Nutriset .
Today, the company must reinvent its model. Those that will prevail will be those that develop a system of shared values. The speakers of our round table, including our great witness, François Lemarchand, agree with this observation and insist on some fundamental points. These companies must create wealth, in every sense of the word: its moral, social, economic and environmental senses. This shared wealth must be sustainable. And in order to do this, companies must be "ambitious and wise". The 4th type company will be driven by a mandate, will give meaning to each action and will ensure responsible governance.
The third and final roundtable on this day devoted to Nutrition Autonomy for All was "What status for essential public health goods?". It brought together Jean-Hervé Bradol: emergency physician and President of Médecins Sans Frontières, Travis Lybert: Associate Professor at UC Davis University of California and finally Michel Lescanne: Founder and President of Nutriset.
The friendly confrontation between the humanitarian and the entrepreneur, during this last debate, opens up many avenues. For the emergency doctor, nothing should hinder the delivery of these specific products, and especially not the rules of economy and trade.
For the entrepreneur, who must face the vagaries of the market - in this case Michel Lescanne - this attitude could only lead to a decline in quality and a drift in the care given to treatments. Is this a dialogue of the deaf? Quite the reverse, in fact! Like the first debate of the morning, this last round table shows the need for a regular exchange between all the protagonists. Some solutions have been drafted and just need to be looked deeper into.
By its initiative, Nutriset was able to unite these different partners and bring dialogue about. This dialogue must continue.
Because today, for sure, the time is for the complementarity of skills. No one can act alone. And these skills go far beyond experts and technicians, as Félicité Tchibindat pointed out. It is therefore multisectoral expertise that can lead to success in the battle against the scourge of malnutrition in the world.
Nutriset is now committed to continuing this dialogue and is making an appointment in 2012 for a new symposium.