// Archives

Giving up meat and eating plants instead: Is it really that simple?

The complexities of nutrition and the misrepresentation of the livestock industry are creating a simplistic view of much more complex systems, say Andy Salter and Phil Garnsworthy A Guardian commentary piece last week suggested that British meat-eating habits were rather out of control, and would need to be reduced by at least 20% (a statistic …

RADIANT: Realising dynamic value chains for underutilised crops

Biodiversity is hugely important for the functioning of natural systems, and restoring biodiverse ecosystems is an essential part of our fight against climate change. Biodiversity is key to food, nutrition and economic security, particularly for small farmers and farming communities in rural areas. There are around 259,000 plant species on our planet, of which 50,000 …

The National Food Strategy: our Director responds

This post is written by Prof David Salt. We welcome the publication of the National Food Strategy today. Since 2017, the Future Food Beacon has spearheaded transdisciplinary research on food systems, clear in the knowledge that our food systems must change in order to preserve population health and the health of the planet. The current …

The importance of food safety

Today is World Food Safety Day! The foods we eat need to be safe for us to consume, not only for human health but wider planetary health, economic prosperity and sustainable development. There are systemic interconnections between the health of people, animals, plants, the environment, and the economy. We all have a role to play …

Following the flight of the bumble bee – An interview with Chloe Sargent

Chloe Sargent is a UoN-Rothamsted PhD candidate. Her project is entitled ‘Risk assessment of sub-lethal insecticide exposure: new biomarkers and metrics in bees’. She is supervised by Dr Reinhard Stoger (UoN), Prof Emyr Davies (Rothamsted Research) and Dr Lisa Chakrabarti (UoN). Why did you decide to do a PhD? What were you doing before? Before …

Exploring diversity in pearl millet seed – An interview with Brighton Gapare

Brighton Gapare is a joint Nottingham-Rothamsted PhD Student 2019–2023. His project is entitled ‘Exploring genetic diversity in grain structure, composition and functionality of pearl millet germplasm’. His supervisors are Dr. Rahul Bhosale (UoN), Prof. Malcom Bennett (UoN) and Prof. Peter Shewry (RRes). He also works with Dr Neil Graham (UoN), Prof. David Cook (UoN), Prof. …

How does rice reproduce when it’s hot? – An interview with Maureen Ng’ang’a

Maureen Ng’ang’a is a second-year PhD student on the UoN-Rothamsted Graduate Centre for International Agriculture scheme.  Her project is entitled ‘TempR: Developing reproductive resilience to heat stress in rice’. Her supervisors are: Dr. Sigrid Heuer (RRes), Prof. Zoe Wilson (UoN) and Prof. Erik Murchie (UoN). Why did you decide to do a PhD? What were …

Improving Brassica rapa for better nutrition – An interview with Dr Guillermina Mendiondo

Dr Guillermina Mendiondo is an Assistant Professor in Translational Crop Science at The University of Nottingham. She works on different plant species as part of her work on crop molecular genetics within the Future Food Beacon. The origins of the project In 2018, Dr Mendiondo travelled to South Africa and visited farmers in KwaZulu-Natal as …

Humanity’s impact on earth – An interview with Matt Jones

Professor Matthew Jones is leading the Palaeobenchmarking Resilient Agricultural Systems (PalaeoRAS) project. He is based in the School of Geography.   Tell me about your work. What do you study?   I’m a Quaternary Scientist, a geologist with a particular interest in the last 2.5 million years of Earth’s history (the Quaternary Period). My own work focusses on the last 20,000 years, the time period since …

How do plant roots respond to higher temperatures? – An interview with Aneesh Lale

Aneesh Lale is a PhD student on the Palaeobenchmarking Resilient Agricultural Systems (PalaeoRAS) project  Why did you decide to do a PhD? What were you doing before?  My father, having never found the time to complete his post-graduation, always encouraged me to learn as much as possible. My inquisitive nature, in addition to ample support from my parents, made a PhD …