2017 Youth-Ag Summit Applications Now Open

The 2017 Youth Ag-Summit has been announced to be held in Brussels and Young Australian Ag leaders can now apply!

2017 Youth Ag-Summit to be held in the capital of Europe

  • Bayer, together with Groene Kring and the Fédération des Jeunes Agriculteurs, to host third Global Youth Ag-Summit in Brussels, Belgium
  • Interested young Australian leaders are now invited to apply
  • Essay applications close on January 13, 2017 at www.youthagsummit.com


Australia, September 15, 2016 – Against a backdrop of increasing disconnection between young people and farming, and a world population that is forecast to soar to ten billion by 2050, visionary thinking, a long-term approach, and creativity are urgently needed to develop solutions to enable the next generation of food producers to face global farming challenges.

Bayer together with two Belgian young farmers associations, Groene Kring and Fédération des Jeunes Agriculteurs, are inviting young thought leaders from around the world to apply to attend the third Global Youth Agriculture Summit in Brussels, Belgium, from October 9 to 13, 2017.

Approximately 100 young delegates from around the world will share ideas, develop solutions and engage in an open discussion on one of the world’s most challenging questions: How do we feed a hungry planet sustainably?

To apply, young people aged 18 to 25 are asked to submit an essay on the underlying causes of food insecurity and the effect it can have on a growing population. The essay question is based on the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Ability to demonstrate original ideas and passion to help shape the future will be the key selection criteria for the Youth Ag-Summit. Essay applications will be accepted online and close on January 13, 2017.

In 2015, delegates from 33 countries delivered the Canberra Youth Ag-Declaration, an action-oriented plan with recommendations on how youth can have the maximum impact on global food security, which was tabled at the United Nations Committee on World Food Security in Rome afterwards.

“The Youth Ag-Summit was packed with actionable outcomes for all attendees and has resulted in a very supportive alumni group who continue to collaborate and support each a year on from the Summit in Canberra,” said Laura Grubb, 2015 alumni delegate from Australia, who was selected to present the declaration to the UN.

“After entering the workforce earlier this year, I found that YAS was well received by people in the industry and the prestige of this event will only continue to grow,” continued Laura.

“YAS has allowed me to take home many new ideas and initiatives on food security and sustainability and I would encourage all young Aussies who are passionate about feeding a hungry planet to apply!”

Future Farmers Network Australia (FFN) partnered with Bayer in 2015 to host the second Youth Ag-Summit in Canberra.

“FFN understands the very real need to nurture leaders to ensure we can address the challenges facing agriculture both locally and globally, which is why it is so important organisations like Bayer provide young Australian thought leaders the opportunity to have their voice heard,” said Toby Locke, FFN Executive Officer.

“We’re looking forward to the movement continuing in the European capital in 2017,” continued Toby.

Assessing young people’s knowledge about agriculture

The Summit’s long-term goal is to inspire delegates to not just think, but to act, and action is clearly needed to improve young people’s knowledge about agriculture, since many young people are disconnected from farming and give little thought to where their food comes from. That is why Bayer initiated a major study[1] to assess young people’s agricultural literacy in eleven countries during Summer 2015. The Youth Agriculture Literacy Study revealed that the overwhelming majority of young people had no idea when crops were ripe or were harvested. Less than a quarter of young people around the world were aware that wax is an animal product. In Great Britain only almost a quarter correctly answered that wine grapes are ripe in autumn and every other US youngster didn’t know that spices are dried plants. Furthermore, the study demonstrated that a higher level of education does not mean a higher level of agricultural literacy.

“Bayer is committed to encouraging young people to learn about agriculture and to inspire the next generation of ag visionaries. With initiatives like the 2017 Youth Ag-Summit, agricultural scholarships and experimental learning at our student labs and online, we want to encourage young people to learn more about sustainable agriculture and food supply whereby the vital role of science and innovation is highlighted,” says Bernd Naaf, Head of Business Affairs & Communications and Labor Director at Bayer.

About the Youth Ag-Summit

The Youth Ag-Summit is a global youth conference to inspire and connect the next generation of young leaders in agriculture and related disciplines. At the Summit, 100 young leaders aged 18 to 25 from all around the world will meet to share perspectives and create an open dialogue on one of the world’s most challenging questions: how to feed a hungry planet? The Youth Ag-Summit forms part of the Agricultural Education Program and aims at raising awareness for food and farming all over the globe.

Find out more about the application process and summit at: www.youthagsummit.com

Find out more about the Agricultural Education Program at: www.ag-education.bayer.com

About Future Farmers Network

Future Farmers Network (FFN) is Australia’s only national youth agricultural network that connects and supports young Australians involved in rural industries. Operating since 2002, FFN connects youth involved in all facets of agriculture and provides members with access to the latest news, events, scholarships, awards and information from across all aspects of the Australian agricultural sector. To learn more about FFN visit: https://futurefarmers.wpengine.com

About Groene Kring

Groene Kring (GK) is an association for young farmers in Flanders (Belgium) with around 3.500 members. GK unites young farmers via activities, to facilitate information exchange in between each other. Furthermore, GK organises entrepreneurial education and facilitates the transmission of agricultural family businesses. The association protects the interests of young farmers on a regional, national and international level. Finally, GK aims to improve the image of the agricultural sector. For more information, visit: www.groenekring.be

About the Fédération des Jeunes Agriculteurs

Fédération des Jeunes Agriculteurs (FJA) is a movement of youth and an agricultural organisation representative of all the young farmers of the Walloon Region. FJA represents the views of 2.800 members and advocates on their behalf at a national and European level. The organisation also organises training courses and is recognised as a professional center of formation for all the actors and professionals in the agricultural sector.

For more information, visit: www.fja.be

Bayer: Science For A Better Life

Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the Life Science fields of health care and agriculture. Its products and services are designed to benefit people and improve their quality of life. At the same time, the Group aims to create value through innovation, growth and high earning power. Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development and to its social and ethical responsibilities as a corporate citizen. In fiscal 2015, the Group employed around 117,000 people and had sales of EUR 46.3 billion. Capital expenditures amounted to EUR 2.6 billion, R&D expenses to EUR 4.3 billion. These figures include those for the high-tech polymers business, which was floated on the stock market as an independent company named Covestro on October 6, 2015. For more information, go to www.bayer.com.

[1] Using extensive online interviews of 3.300 male and female respondents in age of 18 to 25 years, GMI Lighthouse Research, a global research institute, produced an extensive set of data which has been analysed and interpreted by Prof. Dr. Joachim Klewes, associate professor at the Heinrich-Heine-University, Duesseldorf/Germany, and his team.