Our next Q&A features Milja Fenger, acting executive officer of FairWild Foundation, which promotes the sustainable and ethical harvesting, trade and use of wild plant ingredients.
Why is it important to grow the natural and organic industry?
The food system is one of the key drivers of biodiversity loss and climate change. In order to effectively address these issues, the industry must be on board. The growing awareness among consumers that buying organic and ‘natural’ products can support more sustainable practices is a good first step in effecting change.
What are you looking forward to about Natural & Organic Products Europe 2018?
I am looking forward to meeting people who are keen to find effective solutions to make their company’s supply chain more sustainable.
What do you want visitors to take away from your session at the show?
Many products we use every day are not cultivated but collected from the wild. The casual harvesting of mushrooms, herbs, berries or other plant parts is seen by many as a pleasant and sustainable activity. However, when commercialised, major sustainability and labour issues can arise. Consumers are often not aware of these issues. FairWild Foundation exists to both create this awareness, and also to provide a thorough third party certification scheme to help companies assure that their use of wild ingredients is sustainable and fair.
Who or what inspires you?
People who refuse to stop learning when others would — they persistently experiment from a place of curiosity.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
If you don’t dare ask for a ‘yes’, you will always be left with a ‘no’.
See Milja at Natural & Organic Products Europe 2018
Sustainability for Wild Harvested Plant Ingredients: 3.30pm in the Natural Food Talks Theatre on Monday 23 April.
To register for a free trade ticket, please click here.