Resource Centre How KNORR Is Using Food to Save the Future

At Knorr, we believe that the future of our planet should come first. Every innovation of the past has made our lives easier, but they have also come at a cost to our environment. Our vehicles release damaging gasses into the atmosphere, our plastic shopping bags fill the oceans and our eating habits threaten the stability of our global food system. Before we reach the point of no return, we must look at ways that we can improve our daily eating practices. In partnership with the WWF, Knorr has stepped forward to contribute towards a sustainable solution with Future 50 Foods.

With the Future 50 Foods Report, Knorr has identified 50 nutritious and sustainable ingredients that everyday citizens can include in their diets to work towards a brighter food future. Because we often default to the same meals and foods on a daily basis, we put pressure on these resources to up production – resulting in dire environmental consequences.

As an example, let’s look at the consumption of rice. Rice is one of the world’s most popular grains and to keep up with demand, farmers are forced to overproduce. This leaves no time to rotate crops – a practice that ensure soils remains fertile enough for the next harvest. This is happening across our food system and can lead to soil erosion and food scarcity.

Another example comes in the form of the emergence of climate change. This planet-threatening hazard is even more threatening to the African continent as most African countries rely on rain to water their resource-reliant crops. As a response, Future 50 Foods like millet and cowpeas could be the answer as they are very drought tolerant.

By accepting more variety in our diets, we can work against these practices and develop more sustainable food habits. From grains, vegetables and cereals to seeds, legumes and nuts, the Future 50 Food Report consists of a range of foods from around the world. These healthy foods can easily be used as substitutes for ubiquitous ingredients. Each food product is chosen for its unique nutrition profile and reduced impact on the environment – not to mention, the deliciously diverse array of flavours to add to our favourite dishes.

South Africa’s key Future 50 Foods are as follows: mung beans, millet, quinoa, spinach, pumpkin leaves, lentils, red cabbage, wild rice, cowpeas and bambara groundnuts. These ingredients can easily be substituted in place of typically used foods. In addition, mung beans, millet, cowpeas, bambara groundnuts are not only nutritious, they are also indigenous to South Africa and particularly suited to our climate and soil.

Lentils and millet are rich in protein, making them an ideal alternative to meat. Reducing intake of meat products is also imperative to securing our food future. Just by replacing meat with lentils, the meal will have a carbon footprint that is 43 times lower than beef.

Knorr’s Whatsfordinner? website is now home to a variety of recipes featuring Future 50 ingredients – making it easier and more enjoyable for South Africans to eat more sustainably and nutritiously.

It is essential that we advocate for more sustainable food practices because without food security, the health of our entire planet is at stake. Currently, 75% of the global food supply comes from only 12 plant and 5 animal species. If we continue on this path, we will not only put the security of our food supplies at risk, but also the security of humanity and the standards of health to which we’ve become accustomed.