High school students and global leaders discuss food security issues

March 8, 2021

The final of the Wageningen Youth Institute (WYI) 2021 was held on March 3rd during which high school students from across Europe shared their recommendations for solving global food security problems after an intense period of research. The amazing line-up of experts and speakers inspired young and old to keep on addressing these food security issues. Gabriela Casimiro from Spain and Pam Boltjes and Singa de Valk from The Netherlands were selected to represent WYI at the Global Youth Institute in October!

Online talkshow

From a studio, coordinator Mirjam Troost and WYI 2018 winner Dennis Vlegels were hosting an online talk show that was joined by people from all over the globe. This talk show preceded the roundtable sessions and featured Keegan Kautzky, Simon N. Groot, Linda Klunder, Louise O. Fresco, and Evi Vet. Keegan gave everyone a warm welcome from Washington on behalf of the World Food Prize Foundation. Mister Groot, World Food Prize laureate of 2019, captured the participants with his story on how he founded East-West Seed. Linda introduced her company Kumasi Drinks. The drinks were also featured in the Rebel Box every participant received!

Roundtable discussions

The participants had waited long enough; the roundtable sessions began right after Linda’s presentation. Thirty high school students from the Netherlands, Spain, Czech Republic and Croatia presented their recommendations for solving world food security issues after months of working together with Wageningen University students. Experts were impressed by the quality of research done by the students. The students were also inspired by the other participants.

High school student Ilse shares her experiences:

The experts and speakers gave us hope that we all are able to make a difference in the world. My highlight of the day was definitely my own pitch where I was able to tell other students and experts about my idea, the Food 4 Fiji box. It was great to have the opportunity to learn more about malnutrion.

Global Youth Institute in Des Moines

Gabriela Casimiro from Spain and Pam Boltjes and Singa de Valk from The Netherlands were selected to represent WYI at the Global Youth Institute of the World Food Prize Foundation in Des Moines in October!

Runners up are Ella Wold from The Netherlands and Lucie Škarupová from Czech Republic.

All partcipating students became Borlaug Scholars of the World Food Prize Foundation.

Congratulations to all for your hard work to come u with solutions on feeding our world in a sustainable, fair and healthy way!

Speakers and experts

The Wageningen Youth Institute wants to thank all the experts and speakers for taking the time to inspire young and old and to make WYI 2021 a success!



Simon N. Groot, World Food Prize laureate 2019 and founder of East-West Seed


Louise O. Fresco, President Executive Board at Wageningen University & Research


Keegan Kautzky, Senior Director of Global Youth Programs & Partnerships at The World Food Prize Foundation



Martin Kropff, Director General at CIMMYT


Linda Klunder, Co-Founder at Kumasi Drinks


Arnold Bregt, Dean of Education at Wageningen University & Research


Maaike Groot, Manager of Public Affairs at East-West Seed


Anneleen Hulshof, Policy Officer Food and Nutrition Security at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs


Orlando de Ponti, R&D Advisory Council at East-West Seed


Per Pinstrup-Andersen, World Food Prize Laureate 2001


Evi Vet, UN Youth Representative Biodiversity and Food