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IFST Food Innovation Forum

4 months ago by

​Yesterday Jordan, Harvey and Olivia attended the IFST Food Innovation Forum at The Excel in London, the first event held by the IFST that we have attended as Corporate Supporters.

The morning included talks from Jack Bobo, Director of the Food Systems Institute at the University of Nottingham. Tom Hollands, Innovation & Technical Director of Raynor Foods and Geraldine Gilbert, Food Transition Lead UK & Europe, Forum for the Future.

All three talks discussed the importance of innovation in the food sector for a better future. Tom Hollands gave examples about how Raynor Foods is already using innovation to reduce food waste whilst also reducing customer complaints.

Jack Bobo's talk started with the question has innovation failed? He went on to discuss how far we've come in terms of innovation within agriculture and highlighted how diets have changed over the last half a decade and that health-related illnesses cost trillions of dollars globally to treat. He concluded that we must look holistically at what we eat and consume more foods that have a high yield percentage such as peas and beans to be able to feed the maximum amount of people with the smallest amount of land to stop deforestation and reduce world hunger.

Geraldine Gilbert mirrored a lot of Jack Bobo's opinions in her session. She spoke about the 'bigger picture' and that we need to look at innovation for the food sector globally and not just in our own markets. In her opinion, climate change, nature collapse, inequality and poor diets, are why we need to innovate.

After the morning session finished, there was the opportunity to network during lunch. We had some great conversations with people about the state of the current market, where the market is heading as well as giving some advice to students about CV skills and experience.

The afternoon session was a panel session about 'Ingredients for an Innovation Ecosystem' and the panellists were Susan Arkley, Food Consultant and Lecturer, Foodier; Charles Banks, Director and Co-Founder, thefoodpeople; Charlotte Crowhurst, Owner and Patent Attorney, Potter Clarkson; Helen Taylor, Technical Director, ZERO2FIVE; Debbie Tully, Knowledge Transfer Manager, Innovate UK Business Connect.

The team had a great day and enjoyed meeting people in the industry that without the network of the IFST we wouldn't have met! if you would like to find out more about how you can be a part of the IFST click here.

If you would like to talk about vacancies within the industry or how the current job market looks, give our Technical team a call on 01780 480 530 or email