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IFST hopes webinar will help tackle food scares

By Mike Stones , 09-Jan-2013
Last updated on 09-Jan-2013 at 14:54 GMT

Helping to combat food scares is one of the aims of the free food science and technology webinar to be staged on Thursday January 24, according to the Institute of Food Science & Technology (IFST).

IFST ceo Jon Poole said: “I sincerely hope that this webinar will provide a proper platform for true scientific principles to take precedence over scare stories, rhetoric and unfounded discussion over some of the most important food science issues.” 

Poole said there was a pressing need to move the debate about controversial food topics ‒ such as genetic modification – onto a firmer scientific footing. “The general public – and, indeed, many in the food sector – struggle to make decisions relating to diet, the provision of safe food and managing food waste, often because of conflicting messages from various sources. 

Conflicting messages’

“The science behind food and food processing can be complex to communicate but I hope that, through this webinar and subsequent activities, we will start to form some robust communication principles that communicators can use, and which will help overcome some of the complexity.”

The free webinar Food fact and fiction, separating science from myth was organised by the IFST and FoodManufacture.co.uk and will take place at 11am GMT on Thursday, January 24, 2013.

Taking part are the Food Standards Agency (FSA), food safety watchdog Which? and Leatherhead Food Research (LFR). Dealing with a host of topical food science and technology topics, the webinar aims to identify problems and opportunities in the perception and reporting of food science-related issues.

To help bring clarity to these controversial topics, our line-up of expert speakers will include FSA chief scientist Andrew Wadge, Which? chief policy adviser Sue Davies and LFR principal consumer analyst Nicole Patterson.

Each will give a short online presentation, which will be followed by a live question and answer session.

The chief scientist

The chief scientist will offer a regulatory perspective on food science and technology, while the chief policy adviser of Which? will place the debate in the framework of consumer acceptability.

Patterson will reveal recent research that uncovers consumers’ perceptions about the communication and application of nanotechnology and GM topics.

The webinar is aimed at anyone in the industry who welcomes a debate based on science and technology rather than mere prejudice. It will also be particularly useful to food sector communicators, food science and technology policy makers, and government science policy makers.

Click here to book your place for this free webinar.

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