Discover the Future of Food

60-days, 3 continents, over 160 food heroes
In a one of a kind collection of books – the Food Shapers

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About the Project

Future Food Institute

We, the Future Food Institute (FFI), are an organisation that aims to promote a more sustainable future of food for all. We invite you aboard our intrepid journey of discovery and storytelling through a collection of books called Food Shapers. Without further ado, with Food Shapers as our vessel and discovery as our destination, all aboard for the adventure of a lifetime.

Food Innovation Global Mission

Our story begins in Italy. After three months of design thinking workshops and community engagement projects, 16 researchers from all over the world are preparing to set sail for their 60-day Global Mission. These students of The Food Innovation Masters Program come from all corners of the globe and carry a diversity of backgrounds. Among the group can be found food scientists to designers, from chefs to lawyers. They have however found themselves linked by the single common goal of changing the world for the better. Their expedition will find them walking the streets of Amsterdam, Brussels, Madrid, Valencia, Berlin, Toronto, New York, San Francisco, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Shanghai, Mumbai and Bangkok, where they will find themselves talking to more than 160 food heroes that are shaping our shared future.

Research Topics

Working in teams, the students will explore four major issues for the future – the Future of Proteins, the Future of Food Service, Agro-Innovation in Smart Cities and Scalable Sustainability and Circular Systems. By studying these issues first-hand, the students will have the opportunity to delve deeper into accurately understanding sustainability and innovation in the food sector and will, in turn, breath life and wisdom into Food Shapers.

Meet the Food Shapers

Each of the four books that make up Food Shapers explores one team’s experience of interviewing food heroes, uncovering insights and exploring ideas for positive change in our food system. As you flip through the pages of Food Shapers, you’ll discover a world that celebrates culture, connects communities and promote wellbeing. You’ll find yourself thrust into a world of stories from some of the amazing people that are fighting global problems such as climate change, hunger and food waste.

While you read Food Shapers you’ll find yourself learning alongside our research teams, with lessons that move beyond the surface to become a deeper investigation of how food involves us in a system of social and environmental relationships. For food above all connects us.

To the Future and Beyond

But our journey has just begun. Take a look at an overview of our research with our summary maps or see through the eyes of our researchers with our video shorts. With ever growing resources and research to offer, we aim to offer you a glimpse into the lives of those shaping our food system. Stay in touch and watch this space!

The Books | Vol.1

Agro-Innovation in Smart Cities:

The book of Agro-Innovation in Smart Cities uses current projections to build an argument around the urgent need for a new urban agenda. One that promotes human settlements that are environmentally sustainable, resilient, socially inclusive, safe and violence-free and economically productive. It aims to present case studies that outline what should be taken into account when considering the socio-technical integration within the cities of tomorrow.

The Books | Vol.2

Future of Protein

As meat consumption rises, its impact on the environment, human health and animal welfare becomes of increasing concern. The Future of Protein book investigates protein source diversification as a potential measure to combat the negative effects associated with industrialised meat production and over-consumption. It also looks into the potential barriers to a pivot in preferred protein sources and how these barriers can potentially be overcome.

The Books | Vol.3

Future of Food Service

The book of Future of Food Service highlights a potential world that places ever-increasing emphasis on the intangible, non-quantifiable and the long-term attributes of food. As this shift takes place, the foodservice industry will start to become less and less discernable from the foodcare industry. Currently, and increasingly in the future, consumers want food to offer more than just mere nutrition. Our research predicts that such non-nutritive preferences will grow in breadth, depth and urgency over time and will eventually transform these preferences into demands.

The Books | Vol.4

Scalable Sustainability and Circular Systems

Sustainability of the food system is a complex global issue that encompasses three major dimensions of sustainability: economy, environment and society. It also needs to balance the needs and desires of all its major stakeholders, ranging from farmers to citizens. The book of Scalable Sustainability and Circular Systems delves into a world of balance. It considers the need of moving from an industrial era to one of more conviviality. It also considers a world moving away from a mechanistic-industrial paradigm centred on globalized markets towards a paradigm centred on people and the planet.

  • Agro-innovation in smart cities

  • Future of protein

  • Future of food service

  • Scalable sustainability and circular system


Free Printable Summaries!
Key insights and case studies from the Food Shapers books have been thoughtfully condensed into four insightful summaries. Fill in a quick 5-minute survey and receive them for free!

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Special thanks

This mission would not have been possible without the support of our partners.

Corporate partners
barilla camst tetra pak inalca
Technical partners
google food intesa sanpaolo 24 bottles ecoalf arte facta hyatt only you hotel autentico
Knowledge partners
disba inaf PricewaterhouseCoopers kotler maker faire roma gfar nakamura
Institutional partners
TCRP federalimentare italian chamber HK Macao AHK walk for water 2016 YCL foodinnopolis TMA
Media partners
AGI food inspiration retail food love italian food dot academy food food tech connect
Food Innovation Program - Supporting partners
cir food amadori youcangroup riunite BLAKEBAILEY comune reggio emilia REI
With the patronage of
unido ITPO farnesina regione ER