ForumforAg Panel Session

Transatlantic cooperation to face global agricultural challenges

Date: Wednesday, November 3, 2021    Time: 09:00 - 10:30 CET


Click on the image above to watch videos from this event.

Confirmed speakers (in alphabetical order)

Thierry de l’Escaille
Secretary General, European Landowners’ Organization
More >Close >
Thomas J. Vilsack
United States Secretary of Agriculture
More >Close >
Janusz Wojciechowski
Commissioner for Agriculture, European Commission
More >Close >
Mark Titterington
Senior Adviser, Strategy & Partnerships, Forum for the Future of Agriculture
More >Close >
Thierry de l’Escaille, Secretary General, European Landowners’ Organization

Thierry de l’Escaille was born in Belgium on 11 May 1955. He studied first at the Faculté Universitaire Saint-Louis, Brussels (1976-78), where he obtained the Diploma in Law, and then at the Université Catholique de Louvain (1978-1980), where he obtained the Licence en droit. He subsequently carried out his Military Service as a Cavalry Officer, 1er Regiment de Guides (1981-1982) in Germany, current rank: Commandant.

Since 1979 Thierry de l’Escaille has been running a family farming enterprise active in Belgium and the Netherlands, in particular in vegetables, sugar beet, potatoes, cereals and flowers. He was the founder of Agriland in 1985. Since 1994, Thierry de l’Escaille has been Secretary General of the European Landowners’ Organization (ELO).  He is also Vice-President of Landelijk Vlaanderen, Member of the Agricultural Reform Group (London), Board member of the Transatlantic Policy Network, Sorgho EU, Société Royale forestière, President Patrimoine Culturel Immobilier, Chairman of various funds.

Since 1998 he is also Secretary General of Friends of the Countryside (FCS), and member of different committees. He is currently Member of the Board of several agro-industrial companies in Europe, America and involved in Africa. He is a founder of the Forum for the Future of Agriculture, of the Wildlife Estate Label and deeply committed in private conservation such as in reasonable agriculture.

He is member of the Board of Directors of a major protected area in Latin America. President of the board in a work promoting rural development and supporting education of young rural citizens in Colombia.

More information
Website –
Twitter – @EULandownersOrg
Facebook – europeanlandowners
LinkedIn – thierry-de-l-escaille-6728724
Thomas J. Vilsack, United States Secretary of Agriculture

Thomas J. Vilsack was confirmed as the 32nd United States Secretary of Agriculture on Feb. 23, 2021 by the U.S. Senate. He was nominated by President Joe Biden to return to a role where he served for eight years under President Barack Obama.

As leader of the U.S. Department of Agriculture as the 30th Secretary of Agriculture between 2009-2017, Vilsack worked hard to strengthen the American agricultural economy, build vibrant rural communities and create new markets for innovation in rural America. He fought to put Americans back to work by investing in rural infrastructure, renewable energy and large-scale conservation partnerships. Under his leadership, USDA supported America's farmers, ranchers and growers who drove the rural economy forward, set records for U.S. agricultural exports, provided food assistance to millions of Americans, and helped provide a safe, sufficient and nutritious food supply for the American people. USDA introduced healthier food choices in school meals to benefit 50 million children during Vilsack’s tenure and expanded free and reduced-price lunches for millions of kids.

Vilsack was the longest-serving member of President Obama’s original Cabinet. Prior to his appointment, he served two terms as the Governor of Iowa, served in the Iowa State Senate and as the mayor of Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. He received his bachelor's degree from Hamilton College and his law degree from Albany Law School in New York.

Prior to returning to USDA, he served as president and CEO of the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) from 2017 until February 2021. There, he provided strategic leadership and oversight of USDEC's global promotional and research activities, regulatory affairs and trade policy initiatives. In addition to his post at USDEC, he also served as a Strategic Advisor to Colorado State University’s food and water initiatives.

A native of Pittsburgh, Penn., Vilsack was born into an orphanage and adopted in 1951. After graduating from law school, Vilsack moved to Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, his wife Christie’s hometown, where he practiced law. The Vilsacks have two adult sons and two daughters-in-law—Doug, married to Janet; and Jess, married to Kate. They have five grandchildren.

More information
Website –
Twitter – @SecVilsack
Janusz Wojciechowski, Commissioner for Agriculture, European Commission

Member of the European Commission since 1 December 2019, responsible for Agriculture, he is a lawyer and an attorney.

Commissioner Wojciechowski’s responsibilities include supporting negotiations on the future of the CAP, developing a long-term vision for rural areas and developing an action plan for organic farming.

Commissioner Wojciechowski grew up on a farm in rural Rawa Mazowiecka, Łódzkie region in central Poland. He had started his professional career as a judge at different levels up to being a judge of the Supreme Court of Poland. Then he held very significant post of the President of the Supreme Audit Office of Poland (1995-2001).

From 2001 Commissioner Wojciechowski represented Łódzkie constituency as a Member and also Vice-marshal of the Parliament of the Republic of Poland - Sejm (2001-2004) and from June 2004 till May 2016 as a Member of the European Parliament of 3 terms. As MEP he was Member of the European Parliament's Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals in the European Parliament since his 1st term in 2004; since 2014 till 2016 its President.
From May 2016 to November 2019 he was the Member of the European Court of Auditors, representing Poland.

More information
Website –
Twitter – @jwojc
Mark Titterington, Senior Adviser, Strategy & Partnerships, Forum for the Future of Agriculture

Mark has enjoyed a long career in the agri-food sector having previously worked at the United Nations and for Syngenta where he held a number of senior leadership positions in corporate affairs and business sustainability in the EAME region and globally. After leaving Syngenta in 2017, Mark became Chief Executive of EngineeringUK, a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to inspiring and nurturing STEM skills in young people.

Mark is a co-founder and senior adviser to the Forum for the Future of Agriculture and a Senior Fellow at the Transatlantic Policy Network. He is also the current Head of Marketing and Public Affairs for Indigo Agriculture Europe GmbH.


Wednesday, November 3 | 09:00 - 10:30 CET | Brussels, Belgium
09:00 (CET)

Welcome and housekeeping
● Mark Titterington, Senior advisor to the Forum for the Future of Agriculture

09:05 - 09:10 (CET)

Opening remarks
● João Pacheco, Senior Fellow at Farm Europe

09:10 - 10:20 (CET)

Opening: Summary of key outcomes from all impact assessments

Moderated panel with:
● Thomas J. Vilsack, United States Secretary of Agriculture
● Janusz Wojciechowski, EU Commissioner for Agriculture
● Paolo De Castro (S&D), Member of the European Parliament, Committee for Agriculture and for International Trade
● Moderated by Mark Titterington, Senior adviser to the Forum for the Future of Agriculture

Questions & answers

10:20 - 10:30 (CET)

Handover and closing

Panel closing
● João Pacheco, Senior Fellow at Farm Europe

Event closing
● Thierry de l’Escaille, Secretary General of the European Landowners’ Organization

In collaboration with