Making Latin America a healthier place to eat, drink and live
Health and well-being is a core pillar of Givaudan’s 2020 strategy. A recent symposium held in the Latin American countries of Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico is the third of its kind, helping our customers to align with government policies in the region to bring about healthier lifestyles.
Under the title of ‘Creative disruption for healthier and delightful food’, 600 customers from across the four LATAM countries attended the Health & Wellness Symposium in Summer 2016. The previous Symposium, held in the same territories in 2014, was attended by almost 400 customers. In a post-event Satisfaction Survey of attendees over 90% expressed relevance to their business topics, and a commitment to participate in similar events in the future.
The drive for healthier lifestyles
Driving the need for partnerships in the food and beverages industry on this topic is the higher incidence and prevalence of non-communicable diseases, related to nutrition. Consequently, LATAM governments have come under pressure by experts to make food and beverages healthier and safer, along with initiatives to promote more active lifestyles. Recent examples include the sugar tax in Mexico and new regulations in Chile and Ecuador.
Givaudan is perfectly placed to support our local customers in this regard. The 2016 Health & Wellness Symposium represented an opportunity to illustrate how healthy food and drink alternatives can be achieved through replacing ingredients with balanced flavour profiles.
This year’s events included Givaudan’s own internal teams of flavourists, regulatory experts and commercial specialists, along with external speakers from the fields of athletics, neuroscience, innovation and cuisine. Customers were also invited to explore our latest taste technologies in dedicated tasting sessions.
Three modules in half a day
Over the course of each half-day event, the presenters collectively addressed specific themes on healthy eating, consumer preferences and insights, as well as new challenges for the food and beverage industry in a changing regulatory environment. In 30-minute presentations reminiscent of TED Talks, each event was divided into three modules, namely: Health & Wellness covering people’s mental and physical well-being; Making the world a healthier place to eat, drink and live; and Putting people first, without taste coming second.
One of the speakers, Gabriel, Head of LATAM Regulatory for Givaudan, explained to customers the tough reality around new regulations, highlighting the fact that these are often accompanied by confusing messages. Gabriel noted how consumers were being exposed to misinformation through online and offline channels, portraying the food and beverage industry as a ‘villain’ and the main source of today’s health problems. He invited the auditorium to be proactive – to stop being passive spectators and become protagonists for change.
Another presentation of note was given by Sebastián, Regional Consumer Insights Manager for LATAM. His talk centred upon a research study undertaken in five LATAM countries, focusing on what consumers look for in a healthy product, together with their habits and perceptions regarding nutrition and health and how this interacts with their reality.