Future of Food and food of the future

Future of Food and food of the future: Sweet proteins, 3D printed meat, novel processing technologies and food personalization

The European Federation of Food Science and Technology (EFFoST) will be holding its 34th International Conference this week, hosted by the Technion, marking the first time that the event is held under the leadership of an Israeli team of researchers

The European Federation of Food Science and Technology, EFFoST, will be holding its annual conference this week, exploring the theme, “Bridging high-tech, food-tech and health: Consumer-oriented innovations”. The conference will be held online on November 10-12, 2020, and will be attended by over 400 researchers, industry people and students, and hosted by Technion researchers.

The conference will discuss a broad variety of topics at the forefront of food, nutrition, and sustainability science and technology, and will feature the world’s leading experts as well as three Israeli startups: Redefine Meat, winner of the Technion’s EIT Food Accelerator Network Program in 2018, which has developed a proprietary 3D meat and meat substitute printing technology; Amai Proteins, which is working to create a new type of artificial sweetener; and Solutum, pioneers in breakthrough food packaging technology.

Day 1 of the conference will be broadcasted live and will feature nine top experts from industry and the academic world, including speakers from the Technion, the U.S., Belgium, Switzerland, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia, as well as experts from Nestle (Switzerland) and the Good Food Institute (U.S.). Day 2 and Day 3 will include 5 tracks of parallel sessions with over 90 pre-recorded lectures as well as live broadcasts of plenary speakers, plus Q&A.

This is the first time that this important international conference, which has taken place since 1986, is to be hosted by researchers from institutions outside of Europe. Last year EFFoST decided to hold the conference, for the first time, in Israel under the leadership of the Technion, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic and associated health concerns, this year the conference will be held online.

The EFFoST2020 Conference was organized by researchers from the Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Engineering, Assoc. Prof. Uri Lesmes (conference chair), Prof. Esther Segal, Dr. Maya Davidovich-Pinhas and Dr. Avi Shpigelman, together with Dr. Zvika Hayouka of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

According to Prof. Lesmes: “Population growth, the COVID-19 pandemic and growing awareness of human health and environmental quality have created new challenges for the food industry, and only through collaboration between industry and academia will we be able to devise innovative, creative science-backed robust solutions. This is precisely the goal of the conference – to share scientific and technological knowledge and forge partnerships that will enhance the food sector’s ability to deliver healthy, tasty and varied solutions that are aligned with environmental awareness and human diversity.”

The conference will be opened by EFFoST President, Prof. Olga Martin Belloso, and this year’s Conference Chair Prof. Uri Lesmes, followed by three successive sessions. The first will focus on science, food-tech and health in the 21st century, the second on innovation and entrepreneurship in the food sector, and the third – on challenges and opportunities to feed the world, today and in the future. Sessions will include lectures by world-class experts on a variety of topics, including eating habits, a balanced diet and processed foods (Prof. David Raubenheimer, Australia); smart food packaging, prevention of food contamination and shelf life extension (Prof. Esther Segal of the Technion); use of artificial intelligence in food product development (Prof. Christoph Hartmann, Switzerland); intelligent planning of decentralized food production and food personalization (Prof. Alejandro Marangoni, University of Guelph, Canada); science-based innovation in the food world (Prof. Julian McClements, University of Massachusetts, U.S.); and nonthermal food processing (Prof. Indrawati Oey, University of Otago, New Zealand).

“These are difficult times, and certainly very challenging when it comes to holding international conferences, and it’s no wonder that this is one of the only prominent food conferences taking place these days”, Prof. Lesmes said. “Despite the numerous difficulties, we insisted not only on holding the conference, but also on the high level of our featured speakers and the many lectures. The current pandemic, which has led to product shortages and caused shoppers to raid the supermarket chains, has emphasized the importance of food in modern life and raised the need for efficient production, local production and a shift in the prevailing perceptions of supply chains in the food industry. I am in no doubt that the EFFoST2020 Conference will lead to a better understanding of the challenges we face, and to the formulation of solutions that promote variety in the food world, the availability of products, and their impacts on our lifestyle, our health and the environment.”

Click here for the complete conference program.

Click here to watch pre-conference interviews with the plenary speakers

Please confirm attendance in advance