Announced at the IFST spring conference at Imperial College, London yesterday (April 23), the partnership aims to help food scientists and technologists to pool information in a bid to help the transatlantic scientific community contribute to the challenge of feeding the globe’s burgeoning population – expected to reach 9bn by 2050.
Members of both organisations will benefit from reduced-price access to a wide range of information generated to answer such challenges as: ensuring food security, defending food safety, improved consumer nutrition and reduced food waste.
‘Sharing knowledge, building connectivity’
The two organisations said in a joint statement: “To rise to the challenges associated with this evolution, professionals in food science and technology-based roles will need to develop throughout their careers by sharing knowledge, building connectivity and keeping up to date with the latest developments and innovations.”
In addition to access to shared resources generated by the two communities, members of the two organisations were also predicted to benefit from networking opportunities within a wider and more international community of food science and technology professionals.
The partnership will also promote greater awareness of trends and developments that will help members in their jobs today and in the future.
‘Respected career choice’
“Our organisations recognise the need to support our members through knowledge sharing, the promotion of food science and technology as an exciting and respected career choice and by building up the highest standards of professional integrity,” said the joint statement.
“Food is a global community and links like this are fantastic in sharing best practice and knowledge in the context of food safety and food integrity.”
Alec Kyriakides, Sainsbury’s head of product quality, safety and supplier performance
IFST ceo Jon Poole told FoodManufacture.co.uk the two organisations had recently signed an agreement to share information after lengthy talks. “The agreement will offer our members connectivity with the IFT [and its information reources] at a reduced fee,” he said.
Chair of the conference – Food safety in the court of public opinion – Alec Kyriakides predicted pooling information on food science and technology will help industry professionals respond more rapidly and effectively to food threats.
“Food is a global community and links like this are fantastic in sharing best practice and knowledge in the context of food safety and food integrity,” said Kyriakides, who is Sainsbury’s head of product quality, safety and supplier performance.
Founded in 1939, the Chicago-based IFT has members in more than 90 countries worldwide.
Meanwhile, watch out next week for video interviews with Jeremy Hall, group technical director at Bernard Matthews, on fighting campylobacter and Sue Davies, chief policy adviser at consumer pressure group Which?, on why the Food Standards Agency in England should have its former responsibilities restored.