Keizai Events

The Future of Food in a Resource Constrained World

Event Overview:

Leveraging Silicon Valley Solutions for our Food System
Most people know about Silicon Valley, but how many people realize that Silicon Valley’s backyard is the largest Agricultural production region

in the US producing about $50 billion in cash receipts per year?

In total there are over 400 ag products grown commercially in California with over a dozen of those products grown solely in California. Nearly a third of what Americans consume as food is grown in California. But, with the state’s water and soil systems at risk exacerbated by global climate change, the future of this vast agricultural system is presented with significant risks and opportunities. This forum seeks to show how technology and investment from Silicon Valley can be leveraged to help address these issues and harness those opportunities moving forward.


Justin Milano

Co-founder and CEO, Hummingbird

Justin Milano is Co-founder and CEO of Hummingbird, a social food sharing economy technology that allows anyone to sell, share, or donate food from anywhere, or anytime. Hummingbird’s platform is designed to eliminate food waste, build community, increase sustainable agriculture, and solve chronic hunger. The end result is a platform where individuals and food buyers can find free, discounted, or the finest local and seasonal food in places they might not expect.

Ursula Oesterle

Co-Founder, The Mixing Bowl

Ursula Oesterle is the VP of Innovation at Swisscom and a Co-Founder of The Mixing Bowl. The Mixing Bowl is platform aimed at accelerating the adoption of IT in the food and ag industries through eco-system formation between established industry players, startups, investors, academic institutions and other food innovators. Since 2003, Ursula has been managing Swisscom’s open innovation and scouting activities out of Silicon Valley. She was based in Singapore from 2007-2009 to buildup the Asia Pacific network. Prior to Swisscom she worked in a start-up in semiconductor lasers in Switzerland and was Program manager of a Swiss national Science Program spinning technology out from academia. She holds a PhD in physics from EPFL and has a business degree from IMD in Lausanne.

Alvaro Ramirez

Founder and CEO, eHarvestHub

Alvaro Ramirez is the founder and CEO of eHarvestHub, an IT platform that provides farmers a way to easily connect directly with retailers and trucklers to increase the bottom line. The company’s disruptive technology focuses on te main players in the produce industry—farmers, truckers, and retailers. Earlier this year the company announced the release of its freemium traceability solution. The technology enables small farmers to meet the FDA’s new traceability laws, minimize health risk to consumers and financial liability due to contaminated food. eHarvestHub adds value to not only its customers but to society at-large, helping farmers to become more sustainable and minimize the number of trucks on the road. Alvaro grew up in Jinotega, Nicaragua, a region known for its award winning coffees. To escape the communist Sandanista regime, his parents sent him to the US at age 15. The Bay Area has been his home ever since. Alvaro has worked in the telecomm and high tech industries, as well as the mortgage-banking sector. He lives in Discovery Bay with his wife Claudia and their two children, Sebastian and Isabelle.

Christine Su

Founder, Summer Technologies

Christine Su is CEO and co-founder of Summer Technologies. She is completing a joint-degree MS in Land Use and Agriculture and an MBA at Stanford. She has worked as a ranch hand on a family-owned dairy in Japan, as well as a hazelnut nursery in Asia, and Earthbound Farm in California. Prior to this, Christine was an operations professional at KKR where she built enterprise systems for an Apple supplier and a $2 billion car retail franchise. She started her career as a McKinsey consultant and has a B.A. in Political Science from Stanford.

Last summer, Christine built an operations reporting system for the largest hazelnut nursery in Asia – a 10 million tree nursery in Bhutan. She also created mobile-enabled cloud-based field reports to monitor tree health in 15,000 orchards across rural Bhutan. At KKR, Christine built and implemented an end-to- end production management and quality reporting system for a 1,000- operator facility in one of Apple’s component suppliers in Southeast Asia. She also built and rolled out sales management dashboards for 60 stores at a $2 billion auto retailer in China.


Tim Koide

Manager, Mitsubishi Corporation(Americas)

Tim Koide is a Manager of Corporate Strategy for the Mitsubishi Corporations(Americas) Silicon Valley Branch. His current projects have him handling the strategy for industrial metal 3D Printing, as well as new business development in the food and ag space. Tim has a BA from Brigham Young University and an MA in International Relations and Economics from the Johns Hopkins University SAIS.


Monday, September 22, 2014 

PROGRAM: 6:00 P.M. – 8:15 P.M.
NETWORKING: 8:15 P.M. – 9:00 P.M.
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
650 Page Mill Road, Palo Alto, CA 94304

$15:   Early Bird Discount for first 30 people by Thu, September 4 (11:00 pm) Non-Refundable

$20:   Regular Registration by Thu, September 18 (11:00 pm)

$35:   Late Registration by Sun, September 21 (12:00 noon)

$50:   Walk-ins (Subject to room capacity / cash or check only)
Food, including sushi and beverages, will be served.