7th June, Food safety day, Food safety, everyone’s business

Proper nutrition is one of the fundamental pillars of good health. However, this pillar can only fulfil its rightful role when it reaches the consumer in the right manner. If nutrition fails to reach the consumer properly, it can even become a determinant of health. But the one thing that can ensure that nutrition will not be a determining factor is nothing but food safety.

Every year, on June 7th, a day is dedicated to honouring the efforts of 188 countries and one organization (the European Union) that tirelessly work to ensure that food is unquestionably free from any hazards and safe for consumption. This day is named World Food Safety Day, recognizing the ongoing commitment and activities undertaken to guarantee the safety of our food.

In short codex, or Codex Alimentarius Commission, is the international food safety and quality standard-setting body, where this assurance and peace of mind come to fruition.

From the moment you feel about eating something, starting with the first step of washing your hands and ensuring the cleanliness of utensils, you are unknowingly fulfilling your role to ensure that you eliminate all possibilities that could jeopardize your health. However, when it comes time to use the purchased food items, you don’t hesitate for a moment. Without anyone prompting you, you have the reassurance of a monitoring system meticulously examining all the details to ensure that no factors related to the food endanger your well-being. Behind the scenes, a trust-based relationship is at play, establishing the framework of food safety.

The International Union of Nutritional Science (IUNS) has a long-standing relationship with the World Health Organisation (WHO).

No longer after FAO was founded in 1945, the first joint meeting between FAO and WHO in the field of nutrition, food additives and related areas took place in 1950. IUNS was subsequently granted expert ‘ Specialized Consultative Status ‘in relation to the work of FAO and other organisations such as CIOMS, IICD and UNESCO.

In the cycle of food security, your role in implementing food security is determined by where you stand in this cycle. As an individual working in a government organization or someone actively involved in the food business, whether it be in the food industry, restaurants, or supermarkets, it doesn’t matter. In any case, you have an influential role in implementing food security in the community because food safety is everyone’s business.

Teaching about basic food safety is an issue that needs to be addressed from a young age in schools and continued through adulthood. It is important to provide education and awareness on this subject so that individuals, as they grow older, are familiar with it and can assess whether food safety practices are being followed in their work environments or not. As food safety is an essential factor in any workplace. And we all need food that is safe, and Food Safety Day is an opportunity to learn how to buy, store, cook and eat while we are sure that food stays safe.

One of the main activities of the IUNS is to study and investigate the current challenges of nutrition on a global scale through task forces. These task forces, supported by the IUNS, align with the goals set by the World Health Organization, which are also based on the fundamental principles of food security.

The IUNS invites all those who prioritise their own health and the health of others as stakeholders aligned with the goals and objectives of the World Health Organization. It encourages them to utilize the tools provided by Codex to take even small steps towards improving food security. The hope is to witness a decrease in the current alarming statistics, which indicate that 1 in every 10 individuals worldwide falls ill due to the consumption of unhealthy food. This is concerning considering there are over 200 different diseases threatening global health, with contaminated food being responsible for approximately 5 million annual deaths worldwide due to infections, a significant portion of which can be attributed to contaminated food.

Dr Prakash former Vice President of IUNS was honoured with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award presented by the International Rice Bran Oil Association.

With great pride and honour, Dr Vish Prakash, the past Vice President of the International Union of Nutritional Sciences (IUNS), was recently bestowed with a prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Rice Bran Oil Association. This recognition is a testament to his significant contributions to Rice Bran oil science, technology, nutrition, and regulations, establishing it as a safe and healthy oil option.
India, renowned as the largest producer of Rice Bran oil worldwide, was the perfect backdrop for the momentous occasion. The award was presented by the esteemed International Rice Bran Oil Association from Vietnam, in collaboration with the Solvent Extractors Association of India, during their International Meeting held in Hyderabad in May 2023.
Dr Prakash, a prominent figure in the industry, addressed the distinguished gathering during the event. His insightful speech highlighted the imperative need for sustainable practices in promoting Rice Bran oil amidst the global agenda of reducing the impact of global warming.
Dr Prakash’s Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes his exceptional expertise and unwavering dedication to advancing the knowledge and understanding of Rice Bran oil. This recognition underscores the immense value he has brought to this beneficial oil’s scientific, technological, nutritional, and regulatory aspects.
The IUNS congratulates the success of Dr Prakash and honours the recognition of him as an influential and impactful scientist in nutrition.

The Leading A Sustainability Transition In Nutrition Globally (LASTING) project

“The Leading A Sustainability Transition In Nutrition Globally (LASTING) project, based at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, is seeking expert panel participants to provide input on measuring the sustainability of diets in broad terms and is looking for diverse experts engaged in issues relating to social, economic, environmental, and/or health aspects of food systems. Given your work across these areas, they are inviting you to participate in an expert panel to weigh in and share your opinions on the importance of sustainability metrics related to food systems and dietary patterns across social, environmental, health, and economic domains. Please click through to share with them your location, background, and consent, so they can assess your suitability for participation and follow up with an invitation!* To learn more about this effort, please check out the LASTING Project website here.  

FENS2023 Conference is taking shape

The Federation of European Nutrition Societies (FENS) is hosting its next conference in Belgrade, Serbia from 14 to 17 November 2023. The previous FENS Conference, hosted by The Nutrition Society in Dublin in October 2019, set a new benchmark for nutrition conferences in Europe. The current signs are that Belgrade will match Dublin for the quality of the programme, the standard of the conference centre and the networking opportunities offered. FENS2023 will include plenary lectures, scientific symposia, industry symposia, oral communications sessions, poster sessions, and an educational programme as well as an opening lecture and an award lecture. There will be an opening party and a gala dinner. Plenary speakers are Walter Willett (The search for veritas: enhancing dietary trials and observational studies), Corinna Hawkes (Facilitating food system transformation), Joao Breda (The role of diet and nutrition to ensure high-quality health systems for all), Ellen Blaak (Can nutrition interventions be personalised according to metabolic phenotypes?) and Dirk Haller (Unravelling the complexity of the gut microbiota). FENS itself has organised 20 symposia around 10 tracks:

  • Nutrition across the life course;
  • Nutrition, metabolism, and chronic diseases;
  • Dietary studies, guidelines, and recommendations;
  • New technologies in nutrition research;
  • Personalized nutrition;
  • Nutrition and the environment, sustainability, and biodiversity;
  • Food science;
  • Dietary bioactives;
  • Nutrition education, consumers, and practitioners;
  • Cultural, societal, and behavioural aspects of diet and nutrition.

The FENS Presidential Symposium will summarise the achievements of the FENS activity around “Ensuring trust in the science of nutrition”. Alongside the FENS-organised symposia, member societies, other organisations and universities have organised symposia (22 so far confirmed with others promised). Full details of confirmed symposia can be found on the conference website (https://fens2023.org) under the “Scientific information” tab. This shows the amazing selection of topics on offer and the impressive line-up of invited speakers from right across Europe and beyond. The Nutrition Society is organising a symposium on “School food programmes and impact on future health and well-being: global perspectives” and is co-organising a symposium with the French Nutrition Society on “The role of diet and nutrition before, during and after cancer treatment”.

FENS2023 will be hosted in the newly refurbished Sava Centre with several hotels nearby. For more information on FENS2023 see https://fens2023.org. Important dates to look out for are 30 April, the deadline for abstract submission, and 10 July the deadline for early bird registration. I think FENS2023 will be THE nutrition conference of 2023 – don’t miss out on being there!

Philip Calder

President FENS  

Call for Expressions of Interest for Membership of the Scientific Panels and the Scientific Committee of EFSA 2023

European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has announced a call for expressions of interest for the renewal of its Scientific Panels and the Scientific Committee in 2024. The move aims to ensure the safety of the food supply for European consumers. The Scientific Committee and Panels provide independent scientific advice on a range of topics related to food safety, nutrition, animal health and welfare, and plant health. EFSA is seeking experts in these fields to join its team as external experts and contribute to this important work. The Panel on Nutrition, Novel Foods and Food Allergens (NDA) is one of the most significant panels and is responsible for providing independent scientific advice in a broad range of areas related to human nutrition. EFSA is encouraging experts with complementary expertise in nutritional epidemiology, human medicine, nutrition, allergology, human metabolism and physiology of nutrients, pharmacology, toxicology, food microbiology, molecular biology, and dietary exposure assessment to apply for the role. EFSA believes that the members of professional associations have the skills and expertise that would make them ideal candidates for these positions. The deadline for applications is 3rd April 2023.

For more information please visit the website.

Chronotype , sleep disturbances, and obesity webinar by European Association for the study of Obesity

The EASO Collaborating Centres for Obesity Management will be hosting a webinar titled “Chronotype, Sleep Disturbances, and Obesity” on Thursday 30th March 2023 from 10:00-11:15 am CET. The webinar will delve into the importance of individual chronotype for obesity management, exploring the relationship between chronotype, sleep impairment, obesity, and wider health aspects.

Hosted by Dr Giovanna Muscogiuri (MD) and Prof. Luca Busetto (MD), Co-Chair of the EASO Obesity Management Task Force, the webinar will feature presentations from Dr Muscogiuri’s research team, including Ludovica Verde, Annamaria Docimo, Claudia Vetrani, and Giovanni Chirico.

Dr Muscogiuri, a previous recipient of the EASO New Investigator Award for Clinical Research, was recently awarded the Nutrition Society Cuthbertson Award for her work on chronotype, sleep disturbances, and cardiometabolic disease.

The webinar will also include a Q&A session for attendees to engage with the speakers. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn about the latest research on chronotype and its impact on obesity management.

Specialists from Dr Muscogiuri’s research team will present in the following order :

  • 10:00-10:15 am: Chronotype, body composition and nutritional habits – Ludovica Verde (PhD researcher, Department of Public Health, University Federico II)
  • 10:15-10:30 am: Chronotype and obesity-related cardiometabolic complications – Annamaria Docimo (MD, Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, Section of Endocrinology, Diabetology and Andrology, University Federico II)
  • 10:30- 10:45 am: Chronotype and NAFLD – Claudia Vetrani (Associate professor, Pegaso Telematic University)
  • 10:45- 11:00 am: Sleep quality and obesity: the chicken or the egg? – Giovanni Chirico (MD, Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, Section of Endocrinology, Diabetology and Andrology, University Federico II)
  • 11:00- 11:15 am: Q&A between speakers and audience

Registration via Zoom is now open.

14th Asian Congress of Nutrition(ACN) with the theme “Feeding the Future by Sustainable Nutrition”

The 14th Asian Congress of Nutrition (ACN) this year will held by Chinese Nutrition Society in Chengdu, China on SEP 14-17th 2023. The congress theme will be “Feeding the Future by Sustainable Nutrition.

Since 1971, the Asian Congress of Nutrition (ACN) has been held by the Federation of Asian Nutrition Societies every four years, which was aimed to encourage scientific exchanges among dietitians and food scientists from Asian and the world. 

Key Dates:

Submission Deadline: 30 April 2023 

Abstract Acceptance Notice: 1 June 2023 

Early Bird Registration: Before 1 May 2023 

Regular Registration: Before 15 July 2023 

Late Registration: Before 15 Sep 2023

THEMATIC AREA 

Nutrition and Sustainable Development

Public Nutrition & Health

Basic Nutrition& Research

Food & Nutrition

Nutrition Across Lifespan

Nutrition Education

Clinical Nutrition

Precision Nutrition

Other Directions or Topics

More information:  http://www.acn2023.org

Contact information: secretariat@acn2023.org

Call for nominations: 2022/2023 NSTF-South32 Awards

The National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF) calls for nominations for the 25th NSTF-South32 Awards.

South African innovation in SET (science, engineering, and technology) is honoured with these renowned awards (SA). Since 2012, South32 has been a co-branding sponsor. Therefore, the awards are known as the National Science and Technology Foundation South by Southwest Awards (NSTF-South32 Awards).

NSTF’s theme for 2023Ocean science for sustainable development. This theme was chosen in response to the United Nations (UN) proclamation of the decadal theme of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development for 2021-2030.

Special Annual Theme Award for 2023: The NSTF is making a special award this year for an outstanding contribution to SET and innovation through research and innovation in ocean science for sustainable development. This Special Award is intended to focus on research and innovation in ocean science in support of attaining the sustainable development goals (SDGs) in South Africa.

Contributions recognised: Register nominations for individuals, teams, partnerships and organisations for an outstanding contribution to SET and innovation in SA. The contributions recognised are in the following broad areas:

  • Scientific research
  • Management of SET and innovation and related activities
  • Capacity building in engineering research
  • Water management solutions
  • Clinician-Scientists NEW
  • The Green Economy
  • Data for research
  • Innovations and their research and/or development
  • Communication and creating awareness of SET and innovation
  • Non-governmental organisation activities, which could include technologytransfer, and education and training activities
  • Ocean sciences for sustainable development

Award nomination process

This is a two-stage nomination process:

Stage 1 – Register a nomination by Thursday 15 December 2022

  1. Please note that the registration of a nomination is only the beginning of the two-stage nomination process. When you register a nominee, the NSTF Office will respond with the official category nomination form, to be completed by 3 March 2023 (Stage 2).
  2. Notify the nominee that you intend to nominate him/her/them (team/organisation). Ensure that you receive their agreement to participate.
  3. Complete and submit the online registration. The nominee will receive an email notification from awards@nstf.org.za confirming receipt of the registration of their contact details. Please alert the NSTF Office at awards@nstf.org.za should the nominee not receive this notification and the relevant forms (the subject line says: ‘Subscription Confirmation’).

Stage 2 – Submit completed nomination documents by Friday 3 March 2023

  • Ensure that the fully completed nomination form/s that you received from the NSTF office are emailed to the NSTF before the final deadline and that you receive a confirmation from the NSTF Office.
  • Please note that planning and time are required to complete the nomination document. Hence there is a two and a half months period (December to March) provided for this preparation.

For more information and a list of awards, and categories visit the NSTF website.

GIRACT’S European PhD in flavour research awards 2022/2023

Applications deadline: 31st October 2022
Promoting Flavor Research amongst PhD Students in Europe

Giract is proud to announce that, following the success of its unique and innovative programme to promote flavor research amongst PhD students in Europe across various universities and institutes, 5 industry sponsors will continue to support the programme, now in its 13th year. This consortium aims to raise awareness of the industry and career opportunities in order to increase the flavor research talent pool in Europe. The 5 sponsoring companies are:
– Givaudan
– Kerry
– Lallemand Bio-Ingredients
– Lesaffre International
– PepsiCo

This 13th edition is organised by Giract, in coordination with Andrea Cattaruzza, Director of AndCat Ltd and Professor Emeritus Andy Taylor of the University of Nottingham, UK.

Purpose:

To promote innovative flavor research amongst PhD students across European universities and research institutes. PhD students enrolled in universities and research institutes in 32 European countries (European Union, UK, Switzerland, Norway, Turkey and Russia) are eligible to apply.

The project targets two different groups of PhD students:
Group 1: students who are about to complete their PhD and hence will soon be examining opportunities for employment

Group 2: students who are about to commence their PhD studies

This is translated into the following sub-objectives:
– Publicise the attractions of flavor research so as to pull high calibre students into appropriate PhD courses and then into industry
For Group 1:
-Solicit and evaluate innovative flavor research projects amongst these students
-Provide the Annual Savory Flavor & Food Industry Conference, held in Geneva in the spring of each year, as a platform for the winning student to present his/her work to ‘potential employers’

For Group 2:
-Award bursaries to 6 selected students who are planning to commence their PhD studies in flavor science during the 2022/2023 academic year
-Enable the 6 winning 1st year PhD students the opportunity of visiting the laboratory of certain sponsor companies during the second year of their PhD studies, by using a part of their winning bursary amount for their travel and stay. This will enable them to obtain a first-hand view of an industry R&D centre
Application deadline is on October 31, 2022.

For more information please visit: https://giract.com/flavor-research-programme.php

Lindsay Allen, PhD Lindsay Allen, PhD

Former IUNS Vice-President Lindsay Allen, PhD inducted into USDA Agricultural Research Service Science Hall of Fame

Lindsay Allen, PhD joins a prestigious group of scientists from USDA-ARS in the Science Hall of Fame.

IUNS congratulates former Vice-President of IUNS, Lindsay Allen, PhD, on her induction into the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Science Hall of Fame.

As announced by ASN this week, this prestigious honor is reserved for ARS employees whose work has had a significant impact on agricultural research by solving a problem through research and whose accomplishments continue to be internationally recognized by the scientific community. No more than two scientists from ARS are inducted each year. Dr Allen is being honored for her outstanding and sustained research contributions which led to the discovery that multiple micronutrient deficiencies that stem from poor dietary quality, rather than protein-energy deficiency, and are a major cause of stunting and functional impairment. As a result, her research has had a major impact on global maternal and infant health, and pregnancy and lactation outcomes in particular. The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) adopted micronutrient supplement formulations for infants and pregnant women that Dr Allen helped to develop. Dr Allen also led the authorship of guidelines for micronutrient fortification of food for the World Health Organization (WHO) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), which have been widely cited and translated.  She has conducted many studies including randomized controlled supplementation and feeding trials in low-income populations to understand the prevalence, causes, and metabolic and functional effects of micronutrient deficiencies, published in 330 articles.

Dr Allen served on the IUNS Council member between 2001 and 2005 and continued serving on the IUNS Council as Vice-President for two further terms between 2005 and 2013.

She has also served as President of ASN during the 2020-2021 year and currently serves on the Board of Directors as Past President. She is the past Center Director and currently a Research Physiologist (ST) in the USDA-ARS Western Human Nutrition Research Center (WHNRC) which is located on the campus of the University of California, Davis. She has served ASN as the first President of the Society for International Nutrition Research (now the Global Nutrition Council), Associate Editor for The Journal of Nutrition, and ASN representative to the International Union of Nutritional Sciences and the ASN Membership Committee. Accompanied by the bestowment of the 2012 ASN Fellow Award, Dr Allen’s contributions to ASN have been honored as the recipient of the McCollum International Lectureship Award, the Conrad Elvehjem Award for Public Service in Nutrition, the Kellogg International Nutrition Prize, and the 2016 Outstanding Investigator Award from the Vitamins & Minerals RIS. Her international recognition includes the Career Achievement in Evidence Translation Award from the Mathile Institute.

A panel of peers from USDA-ARS, other federal agencies, or academia selects no more than two scientists each year to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Inductees must be retired or eligible for retirement from ARS must have produced a major impact on agricultural research and made accomplishments that continue to be recognized by the agricultural research community. In addition, inductees must possess the character and record of achievement worthy of emulation by younger scientists and be nationally or internationally recognized by peers in the scientific community.