With the holiday season in full swing, minds often turn to family gatherings, festive parties – and, of course, food. But while we in developed countries take it for granted that we can generally eat what and however much we want, that bounty may not last. Climate change, epidemic viruses infecting livestock and high population growth threaten our food supply.

The future of food – and ways in which technology can help secure or improve it – is a subject that will impact everyone, including consumers, the big agricultural companies who grow or raise our food or, for that matter, every industry imaginable due to the common human need to eat.

Stern Speakers represents researchers at the cutting-edge of trends that could soon reshape what we eat and where the food originates. Read more to acquaint yourself with a leading innovator addressing such a fundamental aspect of human life and survival.

Meet the New Meat

Human beings have raised and slaughtered animals for meat for tens of thousands of years. While both the human and domesticated animal populations have expanded enormously, the earth’s resources continue to deplete. This presents a dire risk to the meat industry, which will find that it has fewer resources available in years to come to support an ever-growing population of livestock. Isha Datar, executive director of New Harvest and pioneer in cellular agriculture, offers a partial answer to this looming threat. She is devising methods of creating animal parts in labs, which can then be used for human consumption. This is not synthetic meat, but real animal products that are grown independently of living animals. Such a revolution would make meat a more viable option in a world where it will soon become more expensive and less available.

As we wish you a peaceful start to the holiday season and the delicious meals you will be sitting down to enjoy, it’s imperative that you remember that there are vast challenges and opportunities alike in the years ahead when it comes to the future of what we have on our plates. Isha Datar offers a new perspective for imagining how we will grow, raise and source our food – and how it will impact not just your dinner but your company and the industry in which you work.