The Business and Industry Advisory Committee (BIAC), which operates under the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), has appointed Kristina Šermukšnytė-Alešiūnienė, the chairperson of the Lithuanian Confederation of Industrialists’ (LPK) Agrifood and Bioeconomy Committee, as the vice-chairperson of the BIAC Food and Agriculture Committee.
Opportunity for LPK
This is the first time that a representative of Lithuania is appointed to be the vice-chairman of one of the committees of this organization.
BIAC members unite the largest business organizations of OECD member countries, among which LPK is included. The Business and Industry Advisory Committee plays an important role, representing different sectors and contributing specific insights and suggestions. The BIAC Food and Agriculture Committee aims to increase the resilience of this sector and contributes with expert knowledge, solving its problems – securing food supply chains, managing natural resources, etc.
“The war in Ukraine has threatened the supply of the main grain crops, the world is increasingly talking about a food crisis, as supply chains are damaged, and the costs of raw materials, processing and transportation have increased significantly. Many decision-makers have only now seen the importance of the food industry and agriculture for the economy, state and people’s well-being. Now that food security issues are being addressed on a global scale, it is very important that we have our own expert in the BIAC Food and Agriculture Committee. It is an opportunity for us to exchange the latest information, as well as to strengthen the positions of LPK, forming the policy of the agro-food and food industry sectors. Especially since big challenges await these sectors, if we are talking about the transition to the bioeconomy and the transformation of the food industry itself”LPK president Vidmantas Janulevičius.
Will contribute on strengthening food value chains
K. Šermukšnytė-Alešiūnienė is the chairperson of the Agrofood and Bioeconomy Committee of the LPK, as well as the director of the digital innovation center “AgriFood Lithuania DIH”. This digital innovation center brings together the main stakeholders of Lithuanian scientific research, business and public sector to pursue digital transformation in agriculture, food and related sectors. K. Šermukšnytė-Alešiūnienė encourages women in the agri-food sector to create regional ecosystems that change the male-dominated agricultural and food industry. This week, she entered the list of 27 most promising European entrepreneurs and innovators announced by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology and will compete in the Women’s Leadership Award (EIT Women Leadership Award).
“The trust and responsibility given will be a great opportunity to use the competences accumulated during my more than 13 years of professional work experience. First of all, in the development of innovative and digital products and technologies of the agricultural and food sector and performing the work of an international expert on the topics of digitalization of the agri-food sector, creation and development of the R&D and innovation ecosystem. I have no doubt that the experience I have working together with the business and scientific community as well as Lithuanian and European policy makers will allow me to contribute to strengthening the influence of the OECD Business Food and Agriculture Committee in shaping the agro-food sector policy of the world’s most advanced governments. I hope to actively contribute to the preparation of the committee’s positions on the most relevant topics for the sector at the moment, such as strengthening food value chains, providing the world’s population with healthy and high-quality food, creating a sustainable environment and managing climate change,”the new vice-chair of the OECD Business Food and Agriculture Committee K. Šermukšnytė-Alešiūnienė
Lithuania in BIAC
Lithuania became a BIAC member in 2018. Participation in the activities of BIAC gives Lithuanian business the opportunity to participate in the activities of about 40 working groups, to receive information about the political activities of the OECD, to discuss the most important issues of the OECD, to participate in consultations with the OECD and to make recommendations.
Currently, LPK participates in the activities of BIAC committees and working groups according to individual sectors and interests (biotechnology, chemical industry, foreign trade, competition, development, economic policy, education, labor relations, energy, environment, food industry, health protection, management, IT, investments, nanotechnology, taxes, etc.).