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Changing commensality during the crisis: the Nottingham Social Eating Network and Covid-19

This post is written by Marsha Smith. The Nottingham Social Eating Network and its community food partners in the city mobilised to meet the rising demand for food aid support during the early stages of lockdown. In this post, I reflect on how the values of ‘social eating’ initiatives are being translated into emergent, localised …

A PhD placement with AB InBev in the USA

Jasmine Littler is a BBSRC-iCASE funded PhD candidate in the School of Biosciences. Her project is titled: Enhancing barley environmental stress tolerance through targeted mutagenesis. She is supervised by Dr Guillermina Mendiondo and co-supervised by Prof David Cook. As part of her PhD programme, Jasmine visited the AB InBev Barley Research Centre in Fort Collins, …

The Perfect Storm: Environmentally and Socially Unsustainable Seafood Supply Chains

This post is written by Lee Matthews, Lucy McCarthy and Anne Touboulic. Seafood supply chains sustain three billion people nutritionally and also provide 10% of the world’s population with employment, the vast majority of whom are small-scale fisher-people. Seafood provides access to safe protein for many of the world’s most economically marginalised people but these …

Elizabeth David on food and belonging: Keeping house during a lockdown

This post is written by Dr Richard Vytniorgu, Impact Research Fellow in the School of Cultures, Languages, and Area Studies. The Challenge of Covid-19 For those of us who can, working from home has become the new normal, squeezing our entire lives into the four walls we call home. Inviting friends and family over for socialising …

Global trading: the good, the bad and the essential

This post is written by Lucy McCarthy (QUB), Anne Touboulic (University of Nottingham), and Lee Matthews (University of Nottingham). In our last post, we began our journey considering food supply chains in times of pandemic and we touched upon their history. Here, we further consider some of the flaws in our globalised food systems and …

UK Plant Health Week: A conversation with a plant pathologist

2020 is the International Year of Plant Health and April 20-27 is UK Plant Health Week. We spoke to Dr Rumiana Ray, a Crop Pathologist, about the importance of plant health, and what you can do to support keeping plants healthy.   You are a specialist in crop pathology, what does that mean? Plant pathologists …

Global food supply chains in times of pandemic

This post is written by Anne Touboulic, Lee Matthews, and Lucy McCarthy The public health crisis unfolding before us is unprecedented, unimaginable and catastrophic. It will profoundly impact our values and lifestyles as it exposes the implications of national austerity measures on public services and the precariousness of our globalised production and consumption systems. Food supply chains …

Coronavirus and the food system: a reading list

Gardening and growing Growing and gardening while in isolation, by Mark Diacono (Facebook/Telegraph) Land available for allotment use has declined 65% since the 1960s (Institute for Sustainable Food, Sheffield)   Food supply chains The UK’s food supply and a call for rational rationing, by Prof Tim Lang (The Conversation) Interview with Tim Lang, by Jay …

Plants for future food security: the case of Bambara groundnut

Future Food Beacon researchers in Malaysia and UK are working with partners in Africa and Asia to help secure the future of our food supply. They are doing this by exploring the wider use of crop diversity to fill food production and nutrient gaps, making a diverse range of food crops available and accessible to …

Researching fermentation in cocoa

Prof David Salt recently visited the Cocoa Research Centre in Trinidad & Tobago. In this post he reflects on our cocoa project in Colombia, and the work we are developing with the CRC. Our Colombian cocoa project began because we were interested in understanding the connections between the way fermentation works in cocoa beans and …