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Global events, Virtual events

IDF Nutrition and Health Symposium 2024

DATE: May 15, 2024

Registration is open for the IDF Nutrition and Health Symposium! This year’s symposium will take place May 15, online, and will be free for all to attend. 

Food-Based Dietary Guidelines (FBDGs) provide the backbone for government recommendations on achieving a healthy balanced diet, shaping nutrition education initiatives and food policies around the world. National guidelines are tailored to suit cultural preferences, food and nutrition security, and aim to reduce the risk of diet related diseases. Nevertheless, many are being challenged to consider the environmental impact of food production, leading to shift in plant-rich diets with less reliance on animal-sourced foods.

However, many discussions have a narrow view and tend to focus on the global perspective, prioritising the environment over nutrition and health, which could lead to unintended consequences in the long term.

Dairy foods are, by nature, nutrient rich – providing high quality proteins and bioavailable nutrients in a unique combination and structure, known as the dairy matrix. They contribute significantly to micronutrient intakes, including under consumed nutrients, across the life course. Research shows that milk and dairy help to optimise the nutrition and health effects of plant-rich diets. Drastically reducing dairy from FBDGs could impact nutrition security, the burden of non-communicable diseases, and increase the risk of micronutrient deficiencies and malnutrition in vulnerable population groups.

This symposium aims to explore the complex interplay between dairy consumption, food-based dietary guidelines, and sustainable nutrition policies.

Register now for free: 


Two sessions with the same presentations:


AM- 7am CEST

PM – 4pm CEST

Welcome/Introduction IDF

Welcome/Introduction IDF

Opening remarks

Dr Francesco Branca, World Health Organization

Global South

Chair: Dr Gilly Hendrie, CSIRO, Australia


Global North

Chair: Dr Rafael Cornes, Universidad de la República, Montevideo, Uruguay

Sustainable dietary guidelines: A balancing act of population and planetary health 

 Dr Sinead McCarthy, Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ireland

Dietary recommendations in South Africa versus consumption data

Professor Corrina Walsh, University of the Free State, South Africa

Achieving dietary adequacy and sustainability through the complementary nature of animal and plant-sourced foods

 Assistant Professor Stephan Van Vliet, Utah State University, US

Micronutrient bioavailability is an important consideration for the evaluation of milk as a source of nutrition 

Dr Natalie Ahlborn, Massey University, New Zealand


Professor Guansheng Ma, Peking University, China

Panel Discussion – 15-20 minutes

2-3 panellists TBC

Prof Guansheng Ma

Dr Natalie Ahlborn

Panel Discussion -15- 20 minutes

2-3 panellists TBC

Dr Stephan van Vliet

Dr Sinead McCarthy

Closing remarks from the chair

*TBC short overview of SCNH FBDG factsheet*





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