By 2050, the world’s population will grow from today’s 7 billion to 9 billion, meaning we will have to produce 70% more food than we do now to avoid large-scale starvation and misery. DuPont invests 62% of its R&D in solving food challenges, but its reputation as a chemical company made it difficult for the company to impact the global food security dialogue and become a trusted partner to governments, NGOs and others who were leading the fight.
DuPont had to earn the recognition and trust of the people who could help make a difference. So the company gave those leaders a vital tool to help them address global food challenges. Working with the Economist Intelligence Unit, DuPont established the first-ever Global Food Security Index (GFSI). Spanning 105 countries and accessible through an interactive website, the GFSI became a unique resource in the struggle against food insecurity.
The GFSI launched simultaneously in five countries, as DuPont leadership took the stage alongside noted academics, government representatives, NGOs and others. Live streaming video, robust social media and enthusiastic press coverage amplified the events. Take-up was immediate. DuPont was invited to speak at over 10 global summits and 15 global organizations requested dedicated briefings. Within eight months, seven collaborative arrangements had been forged, including with USAID who now uses the GFSI to inform its global planning.
DuPont is no longer a staid “chemical company.” It has transformed into a trusted and respected collaborator in the fight for food security in the 21st century.