Good food for 9 billion

7th International Nitrogen Initiative Conference Community Forum

By 2050, the world population is expected to be nine billion people.  To feed this population well, we will have to revise what we eat, and how we produce food.

This panel discussion will explore how we can sustainably produce enough high-quality, healthy food to feed the world in the face of population growth and climate change.  The panel includes:

  • Professor Mark Sutton: environmental physicist and Chair of the International Nitrogen Initiative (INI)
  • Emma Dean: cook, forager, author and winner of the 2013 series of MasterChef Australia
  • Mick Keogh: Executive Director of the Australian Farm Institute
  • Lynne Strong: agriculturalist and Managing Climate Variability Climate Champion
  • Patrick Heffer: Senior Director, International Fertilizer Industry Association (IFA)

The panel will be facilitated by Maxine McKew, Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow at the University of Melbourne, former MP for Bennelong and before that anchor of the ABC’s Lateline and 7:30 Report.  She will take questions from the audience and lead the panel in a discussion of:

  • What good food is – what we are getting right and wrong about the way we eat
  • How our diet affects the environment, and what we may need to change in the future
  • How we can ensure the sustainability of the world’s food supply
  • Ways we have improved farming technology in the past century and what we can do to improve it in the future

This community forum will run alongside the 7th International Nitrogen Initiative Conference (INI2016).  Bus transport will be provided for INI2016 participants between the Melbourne Cricket Ground and the University of Melbourne.  Buses will depart from the MCG at 5:30pm.

Please click here for further information.

When: Wednesday 7 December, 6:00pm – 7:30pm

Where: Cattillo Ganter Theatre, Sidney Myer Asia Centre (Room B02),
University of Melbourne, Swanston Street, Carlton

Coordinated by


Panellist Biographies

Professor Mark Sutton

Environment Physicist at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH), Co-Chair of the UNECE Task Force on Reactive Nitrogen, Chair of the International Nitrogen Initiative (INI)

Professor Mark Sutton is Chair of the International Nitrogen Initiative (INI) of IGBP / SCOPE, and Co-Chair of the UNECE Task Force on Reactive Nitrogen (a body under the Geneva Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution).

He was coordinator of the EU NitroEurope Integrated Project and led the European Nitrogen Assessment (ENA), the first continental multi-threat assessment of nitrogen impacts on climate , air pollution, water quality, soil quality and biodiversity, published in April 2011.

Mark’s interests focus on the emission, atmospheric transfer of atmospheric reactive nitrogen compounds, especially ammonia, including the interactions with greenhouse gas balance, and eutrophication.  He is engaged in leading atmospheric flux measurements and developing a multi-pollutant approach for nitrogen, with special attention to the fate of emissions from agriculture.

Emma Dean

Winner of the 2013 season of MasterChef Australia, author and television presenter

Emma Dean is a cook, forager and author, and the winner of the 2013 series of MasterChef Australia.  Her first cookbook A Homegrown Table was published in December 2013.

She hosts My Market Kitchen, a national television show based at the Queen Victoria Market in Melbourne.

Emma’s passion for food began in the paddocks and kitchen of her regional Victoria childhood home.  Her parents instilled a love of growing and cooking farm-fresh produce in Emma and from her youngest years she was taught to knead bread, grow vegies and collect freshly laid eggs.

Emma’s beautiful cooking style is inspired by a combination of her regional upbringing and her enthusiasm for urban foraging, resulting in dishes that mix classic ingredients with the more unusual and adventurous.

Mick Keogh

Executive Director of the Australian Farm Institute, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission

Mick Keogh is the executive director of the Australian Farm Institute, an independent policy research institute that conducts research into strategic policy issues of importance to Australian Agriculture.  He is also a Commissioner for the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

Mick was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for services to agriculture in 2015.  He holds Bachelors and Master degrees in Wool and Pastoral Sciences, both obtained at the University of New South Wales.

Mick has a long and diverse history of involvement with the agriculture sector, which has included periods of employment as a farm manager, a university researcher, an agribusiness consultant and an agriculture policy advisor.  He remains involved in his family’s farming interests in southern NSW.

He is also Chairman of the National Rural Advisory Council, and Member of the CSIRO Sustainable Agriculture Flagship Advisory Committee.

Lynne Strong

Co-owner / operator of Clover Hill Dairies, Managing Climate Variability Climate Champion

Lynne Strong is a proud sixth-generation farmer who was drawn to dairying after a career as a pharmacist.  She is actively involved in the day-to-day running of their two dairy farms, which produce five million litres of milk per year from the 400 cows milked three times daily.

Clover Hill Dairies is the 2010 NSW Landcare Heroes Primary Producer Award Winner and the National Landcare Woolworths Primary Producer of the year.

Lynne is passionate about sustainable agriculture and recognises a pressing need for primary producers to reconnect with consumers to build a strong appreciation of the importance of farming.  She initiated Dairy Youth Australia Inc. and the innovation ‘Art4Agriculture’ programs including Picasso Cows and the Archibull Prize, which use art and multimedia to engage thousands of students in learning about the valuable role farmers play in Australia’s future.

Patrick Heffer

Senior Director in the Agriculture Service of the International Fertilizer Industry Association (IFA)

Patrick Heffer joined the International Fertilizer Industry Association (IFA) in Paris where he is a Senior Director of Agriculture Service.  In this capacity, he coordinates IFA’s global activities relating to fertilizer consumption.  Patrick also leads IFA’s Africa Program.

Before joining IFA, Patrick spent 15 years with the seed industry, including five years with the International Seed Federation, and two years with FAO’s Seed and Plant Genetic Resource Service.

Patrick is currently on the board of Trustees of the African Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership (AFAP) and on the Steering Committee of the Global Partnership on Nutrient Management (GPMN).

Facilitator: Maxine McKew

Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow at the university of Melbourne, author of Class Act and Tales from the Political Trenches, former Federal Member of Parliament for Bennelong

Maxine McKew’s background is in journalism and politics.  For many years she was a familiar face to ABC TV viewers and was anchor of prestigious programs such as Lateline and 7:30 Report.  her work has been recognised by her peers and she is a recipient of both Logie and Walkley Awards.

For the past two years Maxine has been a Vice Chancellor’s Fellow at the University of Melbourne.  Located in the Melbourne Graduate School of Education she has drawn on the expertise and sustainable research of the school to inform her stories and success and challenge in Australian education.

When she left broadcasting and made the switch to politics, she wrote herself into the Australian history books by defeating Prime Minister John Howard in the Sydney seat of Bennelong.  In government she was parliamentary secretary for early childhood, and later for infrastructure and local government.