Postponed from December 2022 to January 2023 because of rail union strikes, the LEAP Conference was worth the wait. The event was held at St Catherine's College and for the first time since late 2019, the conference was held in person and attendees were able to enjoy catching up in the queue for coffee as well as engaging in the range of sessions and posters presented throughout the day.
The LEAP Conference takes place each year to bring together researchers working on multiple aspects of meat and dairy production and consumption to consider its effects on population health, the economy, society and the environment and aims to build a community of researchers in this field to share evidence and tools to inform action.
After a warm welcome from LEAP Co-Director, Professor Susan Jebb, the day got going with a dynamic plenary from Professor Sarah Bridle from the University of York. She brought GG Dot Flashcards to get us thinking about how different diets add up and asked a series of questions about the food system, including the potential for disruptions and the challenges it faces.
Parallel sessions and posters addressed diet, meat and climate impacts, health behaviours interventions, modelling of food systems, and the future of the livestock and dairy sectors before a closing plenary by Professor Sir Andrew Haines of London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.
Participants then wound down at a drinks and networking reception before heading off into the chill of the January evening. Many people commented that it was wonderful to meet their peers for the first time or to reconnect with old colleagues and friends after the pause of the last few years.