12 March 2023

Life sciences crucial for the future of NZ’s post-covid economy

Biotech and life sciences sector are contributing to solving the Aotearoa’s and the world’s problems, in such a fast changing world.

The benefits of genetic engineering and its place in New Zealand is evolving as climate change and the world economies are relying on life sciences, BiotechNZ executive director Dr Zahra Champion says.

New Zealand’s premier life sciences summit is to be held in Wellington on March 22 and 23

“So much is changing the world of biotech and life sciences,” Dr Champion says.

“We are seeing looking at the meat industry vs alternative protein. Is the meat industry here to stay or is alternative protein the silver bullet to food security challenges and climate change?

“In gene editing we can make the use of biotech tools to create a smart green future to grow New Zealand’s economy.

“Significantly  a key moment at the summit will be the address by Dr Ayesha Verrall, the minister for the covid response, Minister for Research, Science and Innovation, and Minister for Seniors. She is also the Associate Minister of Health.

“As evidenced by the united response to covid, we’ve seen businesses and health and social care providers working together more effectively than ever to find solutions to real health and care challenges.”

There has been substantial growth among New Zealand  firms within the life sciences industry in recent years.

The summit will look at the challenges and opportunities New Zealand and the world is facing from climate emissions, gene editing, scaling New Zealand tech for the world, venture capital funding trends, talent attraction and Aotearoa’s competitive advantages.

The conference, run by BioTechNZ and NZTech, will unite Aotearoa’s life sciences and biotech communities across all sectors including agriculture, environment, industrial as well as human and animal health, Dr Champion says.

Companies are seeking to create sustainable products and biotech is the solution with one of New Zealand companies LanzaTech chief scientific officer Dr Sean Simpson a key speakers. He is talking about transforming waste carbon into materials such as fuels, fabrics, packaging, and other products that people use in their daily lives,

Dr Champion says leading New Zealand companies, which  are using biotech research to help developments in medicine, new plant cultivars, alternative proteins, and sustainable practices, will be among those attending the summit.

For further information contact Dr Zahra Champion on 021 899 732 or NZTech’s media specialist, Make Lemonade editor-in-chief Kip Brook on 0275 030188

Note: Media are invited to attend the summit and interview key people if they can to present their press credentials on entry at Shed 6, 4 Queens Wharf Jervois Quay, Wellington either day.


Manya Sabherwal
23Feb

Manya Sabherwal

National Account Manager, Cytiva

Jai Denton
22Feb

Jai Denton

Director - Crop Biotechnology Policy, CropLife Australia

Mark Piper
22Feb

Mark Piper

CEO, The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research

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