World World Meat Congress 2023 World. International meat industry does not shy away from hot topics during World Meat Congress in Maastricht

The first World Meat Congress (WMC) in five years will be from 11 to 13 October 2023 in the famous historical city of Maastricht, the Netherlands. It will be hosted by COV, the Dutch Meat Producers Association, in close cooperation with the International Meat Secretariat (IMS).

The international meat industry faces a large number of challenges, such as animal welfare, CO2 reduction, sustainability and meat alternatives. How does the industry deal with these issues? “We are emphatically seeking dialogue,” says Laurens Hoedemaker, President of COV. “That is reflected in the congress theme which is Meeting Society & Consumer.”

The World Meat Congress promises to be a very valuable event for those who are directly or indirectly engaged with the (future of) production of meat. One of the other big advantages is the opportunity to network with other congress attendees.

The organisers focus on challenges facing the industry and help meat industry professionals understand the current and future expectations of consumers as well as society in different parts of the world.

WMC offers the congress guests a unique event for the meat industry and related disciplines to meet and learn about the ideas of expert speakers.

World Meat Congress 2023 – Day 1

The opening address will be ‘Healthiness of Meat in our Contemporary Diets’ given by Dr Luc van Loon, Professor of the Physiology of Exercise at the Department of Human Biology and Movement Sciences at Maastricht University.

After this there will be a session on ‘World Meat Outlook and Geo-political Developments’. It highlights the future demand for meat imports in China, Southeast Asian countries and other key markets. But also: what influence will current geopolitical developments have on world trade? Speakers include Chen Wei, Secretary General and President of the China Meat Association and Karl Skold, Head of Agricultural Economics at JBS.

One of the highlights of the congress will be a plenary debate to which the organisers have invited ministers from some European countries to discuss ‘The political landscape for the production and consumption of meat’.

World Meat Congress 2023 – Day 2
On the second day, the opening speech on the topic of ‘Trends in Consumer Behavior’ will be given by Michael Uetz, president of Midan Marketing, a strategic marketing and research firm based in Chicago (USA).

This presentation will be followed by parallel sessions on two highly topical subjects. Firstly, ‘Addressing the Labour Shortage Challenges – Process Automation during Slaughter and Processing’. Many players in developed economies are struggling with a labour shortage. What can companies and governments do about this challenge?

The second session will be about ‘Addressing the Animal Welfare Challenges – What Society Expects and How the Industry Reacts’. For this subject the organisation has (among other speakers) invited a representative from the Dutch Animal Protection Organisation (‘Dierenbescherming’).

On the second day the congress will also focus on the topic: ‘Diversification of the meat market – organic meat and alternatives’. There will be presentations by two people with expertise in marketing high-quality, value-added products: Isabel Moretti, CEO of Swedish Meats who will present the Nordic approach, and David Calderone of the Italian meat products company Coldiretti, presenting the Mediterranean approach.

One of the parallel sessions that will undoubtedly attract a lot of attention is the one on ‘Cultivated Meat – Legal and Market Challenges’ which will have representatives from the US Food Safety and Inspection Service and a cultivated meat company (Maarten Bosch from Mosa Meat) presenting.

In the afternoon there will be sessions dealing with ways to enhance the value of sustainable meat production. The first topic is ‘Valorising the Sustainable Transition: The Carbon Footprint of Meat: Challenges and Solutions’. Speakers include Jason Clay, Senior Vice President of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Martijn Bouwknegt, Research Manager Food Safety at VION Food Group. The other topic is ‘Valorising the Sustainable Transition: Market Models for Meat’.

Dr Jenny Hutchinson, Head of Information and Analysis at the World Office for Animal Health (WOAH) is one of the speakers at the latest session: ‘Global Animal Health Situation and Outlook’.