By Kathleen Berger, Executive Producer for Science and Technology
Marking the second anniversary of the Abraham Accords, the Consul General of Israel, the UAE Embassy in Washington, D.C., and BioSTL co-organized the Trilateral AgriFood Innovation Symposium, held in St. Louis, to build three-way ties between their AgriFood ecosystems.
“Twenty-one years ago, BioSTL was created to build an innovation economy in St. Louis, leveraging our strengths in human health and in plant science and agriculture,” explained Donn Rubin, BioSTL President & CEO. “About eight years ago, we launched a global effort called GlobalSTL recognizing that for us to be successful in innovation in St. Louis, we need to be globally connected. And we began to connect with innovation hubs around the world.”
Leaders in innovating and implementing solutions around food security and climate-smart agriculture from Israel and the United Arab Emirates join St. Louis innovation leaders for an inaugural symposium at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, Missouri.
Featuring topics in sustainable agriculture, food waste, water efficiency, and alternative proteins, the Symposium shined a global spotlight on St. Louis’ assets in agriculture innovation. St. Louis is home to the world’s largest concentration of plant scientists and to global AgriFood businesses, research institutions, national and state farming associations, and a vibrant AgriFoodTech ecosystem. Fifty percent of US agriculture is produced within a 500-mile radius of St. Louis.
“We have a trilateral event, the first of its kind in the United States of the three countries coming together to solve important global challenges,” said Rubin. “By hosting the event here in St. Louis at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, we’re able to show off some of the gems and strengths of St. Louis. We want to convey to the world that St. Louis is an indispensable partner in solving these important world challenges.”
“This Trilateral Symposium not only exemplifies the positive current and future political developments in the Middle East, but also brings together great minds in the global effort to overcome acute and concrete challenges that the world faces, such as climate chance and food insecurity,” said Maor Elbaz-Starinsky, Consul General, Israel. “St. Louis, Missouri, Israel, and the UAE in general, and BioSTL in particular, serve as an international hub for R&D and innovation on these issues, and this Symposium is an opportunity to exchange views on them.”
“With the signing of the Abraham Accords, there is strong interest among the UAE, Israel, and St. Louis, Missouri government, industry, and innovation leaders to build three-way ties between and among our respective AgriFood ecosystems,” said Saud Al Nowais, Commercial Counselor, Embassy of the United Arab Emirates in Washington, D.C.