Stockholm as a Future Food City
What would it look like if we built a city around food? Sweden FoodTech is working with the city of Stockholm to realize this vision, marrying food, tech, and urbanism in the process.
What happens if you build a city around food? Stockholm’s mayor declared that they want to make the city a future food hub. Sweden FoodTech played a role in pushing for this futuristic vision that marrys food production, urbanization, and technology. The organization is a key node in the Swedish food ecosystem, devoted to facilitating networking, hosting events, and assisting in business development. I speak with Johan, the Head of Sweden FoodTech, on what they’re up to.
This municipality is helping kids have a healthier diet
Mayor of Stockholm on making the city a future food hub
Analisa Winther, Nordic FoodTech Podcast Host 1:04
The first question is, when did you first realize or was there a moment when you realized that you wanted to work within food?
Johan Jörgensen, Sweden FoodTech 1:10
Sure, I've always been interested in food. But the very moment came in 2011. I'd been working in tech for my entire life. And then I was voted venture capitalist of the year. And I was bombarded by really shitty business plans. And when you see the smartest people on the planet, presumably the smartest people at least, working on copycats of clones, another dating app, another online casino, you get very bored very fast. And then I said, “I need to get out of this. But where to go to?” So, I took a deep dive into the food sector and I saw, “Oh my god. This is the largest sector on the planet. If you count everything together, it's something like 20% of global GDP. And 40% of all living people work in food one way or another. And I was like, yeah, and it's killing the planet and everyone on it. And there is no tech innovation around. So, check check check. And so then, when you see that, it's a pretty easy analysis that something major is going to happen here and I want to be part of that and push the food sector into a world that is built on food, health, and sustainability, instead of death and destruction as it is now. So, that's basically when I took the decision. So, I took a secret ballot from my friends in tech and said "From now on, it's only going to be about FoodTech. Whatever that is."