The evolution of food and what that portends for the future served as the basis for a book that was recently released by the Nestle Corporation’s chairman and former CEO, Peter Brabeck-Letmathe.
The book, entitled “Nutrition for a Better Life: A Journey from the Origins of Industrial Food Production to Nutrigenomics”, is Brabeck-Letmathe’s attempt at leaving a legacy that shows the important role that those in the food and beverage industries have played in helping to extend people’s lifespans.
Speaking at EU Business School Barcelona on March 20, Brabeck-Letmathe indicated that the dual importance of increased transportation options and improved preservation techniques are some of the chief reasons for such advancements.
In addition, Brabeck-Letmathe’s book looks at the decades to come with an eye toward increasing the nutritional capabilities of all food. Yet the food itself won’t really be changing, just the ability to personalize it on an individual level. Current technologies will likely give way to devices that can be implanted within a person’s skin, allowing them up-to-minute information on such things as glucose level and cholesterol intake.
The information explosion that’s led to the ability to combine the understanding of the molecular makeup of food and an individual’s metabolism will lead to the development of a focused diet plan that’s unique to that person. Targeting of this nature is similar to what’s being done in the field of medicine with respect to treating diseases.
Evidence that Nestle is taking this challenge seriously can be seen by their working together with Google, which has made efforts in the past to technologically aid the cause of health. However, Brabeck-Letmathe made a point to emphasize that the present technology only allows for personalization of such an approach, while the future is when individualization is expected to become the norm for consumers across the planet.
Given that much of the audience that he was speaking to has yet to make their mark in the outside world, Brabeck-Letmathe made a point to emphasize that a nose-to-the-grindstone philosophy when it came to work wasn’t the right approach. Instead, he emphasized that the concept of fun and enthusiasm for a job is something to savour. Using himself as an example, he says that this approach has defined his entire business career and is something he hopes will continue when he inevitably retires from the company.