21st Food & Beverage Industry Meeting



The food and beverage industry will be a key driver of the evolution of the economy and society in the coming decades. It will contribute solutions in the areas of nutrition, public health and agricultural production, and in matters as important as food for the future in a context of demographic challenges. The industry also faces other challenges and opportunities, such as technological hurdles, Industry 4.0, the digital transformation of companies and consumers, and the emergence of potential markets with new, growing middle classes.

Besides its current responsibilities and challenges, the food and beverage industry is often one of the sectors that drive the economic development and growth of entire countries and regions. It is therefore important to focus on the mission, vision and strategy of the industry’s leading companies.

Defining a corporate growth strategy is an enormous challenge in the current political and economic context of 2017, which is proving to be a very uncertain year. The situation in many countries has improved, but the interdependence of consolidated and emerging markets does not make for a clear picture.

The aim of this Industry Meeting’s 21st edition is to focus on some of the opportunities and challenges facing the industry.

On the one hand, the current agenda and all discussion hinges on sustainability, due to its role in demographics and urbanization, as well as the importance of climate change, nutritional challenges and shifts in the way we produce, distribute and consume. In this context, trends such as innovation, technology, Industry 4.0 and the digital transformation of companies are already shaping the transition of the industry. The implications can be seen throughout the entire value chain: from raw materials, manufacturing and processing, packaging, labeling, distribution and suppliers right through to the final consumer.

On the other hand, consumers represent another fundamental factor when defining growth strategies. It is essential to understand their habits, motivations and behavior. We need to learn about them through social media and other data available in order to customize the way we approach them, the consumer proposals we develop and solutions we offer to satisfy their needs while innovating on all fronts, especially in retail.

In short, this 21st Food and Beverage Industry Meeting aims to tackle these questions in all their complexity. To this end, the meeting will address the following topics:

  • The Global Political and Socioeconomic Context
  • The Debate on Sustainability
  • The Circular Economy, Value Cycle and Value Chain
  • Consumer Behavior
  • Innovation in Retail
  • Rethinking Strategy

The meeting, organized with Deloitte, will take place on June 8, 2017 on IESE Business School’s Barcelona campus. The participants will receive a copy of the Vademecum 2017 handbook, which highlights major cities as attractive export destinations.