Leniger Lecture 2015, Thursday 4 June 2015

The Leniger Bruin Kühn Fund promotes excellent education and innovative research in food technology and food safety at Wageningen UR. The theme of the Leniger Lecture 2015 will be 'Sustainable and healthy food of the future: social challenges and technical opportunities'.

Organised by Wageningen University & Research

Thu 4 June 2015

Venue Orion, gebouwnummer 103

Today’s food products are often considered as unhealthy products produced in a non-sustainable manner. In this symposium, it will be explained why and how the current food products and productions methods were developed. Then, promising new technical routes will be presented that allow the making  of better food products in a more sustainable manner. However, technological solutions are not sufficient as moral and social ambivalences towards our current food products form serious barriers towards a more sustainable diet. Therefore, an integrated perspective on techno-social aspects relevant for the topic on future food will be discussed in this symposium as well.

13.45 Welcome with coffee and tea
14.15 Introduction by Prof. Louise O. Fresco, President of the Executive Board of Wageningen UR
14.45 Prof. Peter Lillford (Univ. of Birmingham) on 'Future Foods- designs for health and sustainability'
Prof. Lillford will compare the past success of the food chain in providing an enormous variety of cheap, attractive foods, with the future challenges of healthier diets from limiting resources of materials, energy and water.
15.15 Prof. Cor van der Weele (Wageningen UR) on 'Social challenges related to a transition towards sustainable foods'
15.45 Dr. A.J. van der Goot (Wageningen UR) on 'Concepts for improved sustainable production of healthy foods'
16.30 Reception with drinks

Summary Presentations LBK symposium

Future Foods - designs for sustainability and health by Peter Lillford University of Birmingham, UK

The Food Chain consists of a large number of separate industries from farm to fork, all competing for a share of consumers’ expenditure. Their success has been vital to the development of civilisation and increasing urbanisation. However, this very success is now blamed for an obesity epidemic in the developed world and a rate of raw material and energy consumption which cannot be sustained as population and the rest of the world’s wealth increases. We will investigate the facts and figures of these new challenges, why we eat so much, and what technologies are being explored to keep us well fed and healthier in the future.  

CV Prof. Peter Lillford C.B.E.

Peter was trained as a chemist at King’s College London, and joined Unilever Research where he spent most of his career.  He retired in 2001 and is currently a Visiting Professor in the School of Engineering in Birmingham University.

He is Chairman of the UK LINK Scheme in Advanced Food Manufacturing; is a member of the UK National Technology Platform for Food and consults for several multinational food and drink companies. He was Chairman of the UK Technology Foresight Programme for Food and Drinks and Chairman of Governors of the Institute of Food Research (UK).He is a Fellow of the International Academy of Food Science and Technology, The Royal Society of Chemistry, The Institute of Food Science and Technology and The Royal Society of Arts. He was made Commander of the British Empire (CBE) “for services to science and the food industry”

Meat and its alternatives: issues below the surface by Cor van der Weele, Wageningen University

Various alternatives for meat are being promoted and/or developed, with the goal of diminishing the global consumption of animal protein. In an interdisciplinary group of Wageningen researchers, we aim to acquire an integrated perspective on techno-social aspects of this protein transition in order to identify which roads ahead look most promising. We analyse how each alternative comes with its own particular profile of benefits, difficulties and open questions. The talk will argue that some issues in this complex field are currently undervalued, such as the energy needs of novel protein foods and the moral and social ambivalences that surround both meat and its alternatives.

CV Prof. Cor van der Weele

Cor van der Weele is professor of humanistic philosophy at Wageningen university. She was trained as a biologist and as a philosopher. After her PhD in the philosophy of biology she continued to study issues in the border area of biology, philosophy and society. In a recent project with an interdisciplinary research team, she has been studying societal responses to in vitro meat.

Towards new technological concepts for more sustainable and healthy foods by Atze Jan van der Goot, Wageningen University

The growing demand for food requires the development of novel food products that are produced in a sustainable manner and contribute to a more healthy diet. In this presentation, a number of novel processing concepts will be presented. First, a new route make fibrous protein structures will be presented that could form a basis for a next generation of meat alternative. However, to make meat alterative a sustainable alternative indeed, the ingredients have to be produced in an efficient manner as well. That is why the concept of food-driven biorefinary is introduced. With focus on functionality rather than purity, it is possible to make novel food ingredients with reduced environmental impact and increased health potential.

CV Dr Atze Jan van der Goot

Atze Jan was trained as chemical engineer at Groningen University. After completion of his PhD, he joined Unilever to become a research scientist. Then he became associate professor Food Process Engineering. Currently, he leads a research team that focusses on the development of novel processing concepts for healthy and sustainable foods.