Cambridge Global Food Security

Cambridge Global Food Security

Cambridge Global Food Security is a network of researchers across the University of Cambridge.

Operating as usual

Hungry for Change film | Save Our Wild Isles 20/04/2023

Our food system is no longer fit for purpose – we must take action now to ensure a future for nature, people and the economy.

Watch Save Our Wild Isles: Hungry for Change

Hungry for Change film | Save Our Wild Isles This film tackles issues relating to the food sector, such as intensive farming and how we can reverse the damage caused

12/10/2021

👉🏽The SchoolKit is now available. An project aimed at engaging the next generation in sustainable food and consumption.

📌You can find it here https://bit.ly/3Acs9ci

👨🏽‍🔬👩🏽‍🌾👩🏽‍🏫The SchoolKit is the result of three years' work by professionals from food research, nutrition, agri-food and education from 4 European countries. Together they hope to improve consumers' food habits and increase their confidence in the European food sector.

Instituto IMDEA Nanociencia

05/10/2021

📢 New challenge from


🕵Their team of researchers has discovered personalised strategies to help create the right diet for you. 🥑🥗🥦

Find out and play here 👉 https://bit.ly/2XWhW6y

Instituto IMDEA Nanociencia

20/08/2021

If the summer weather isn't quite as warm as you'd hoped...

..why not stay inside and catch up on our events?

Find out about our Plastic in the Food Chain panel event here: https://bit.ly/37RNMmC and watch it here: https://bit.ly/3xVA5NM

Instituto IMDEA Nanociencia

Healthy Eating: Why is it so hard? – Annual Food Agenda 21/06/2021

Today at 18.30BST!

: What makes it so hard? Is it our genes? Is it our psychology? Is it government policy? Is it global capitalism?

Find out at our FREE online event with Giles Yeo, Dolly Theis and Prof Corinna Hawkes, chaired by Prof Dame Theresa Marteau

More details here: https://bit.ly/3wqb39L

Instituto IMDEA Nanociencia

Healthy Eating: Why is it so hard? – Annual Food Agenda Trusting on food

Healthy eating: what makes it so hard? 07/06/2021

: what makes it so hard? 🥗🍟🍔🌭

Find out why humans can't seem to eat the right thing from leading experts in behavioural psychology, genetics and public policy including Dr Giles Yeo, Professor Dame Theresa Marteau and Professor Corrina Hawkes.

Monday 21st June 18.30 – 19.30 BST - Free online event from the University of Cambridge - Register 👉https://bit.ly/3fpfA6r. 👈

Instituto IMDEA Nanociencia University of Cambridge

Healthy eating: what makes it so hard? From the global obesity epidemic to diet-related disease being the world's biggest killer, we just can't seem to get our diets right.

Plastic in the Food Chain: Can we do without it? 27/05/2021

TONIGHT at 18.30 we're discussing in the food chain. Can we do without it? What does plastic packaging for food mean for human and ?

To put your questions to experts from industry, adademia and register here👉https://bit.ly/3vsnlNZ

Instituto IMDEA Nanociencia

Plastic in the Food Chain: Can we do without it? Plastic packaging is important to our modern food chain, but is it good for our health or the environment? Find out from our expert panel.

20/05/2021

Can Innovation & Technology assist to meet the UN Zero Hunger Development Goal? How? And what needs to be done to meet that target (by 2030)? Join us on Friday 21May, 2.30pm BST to discuss with Dr Enrica Porcari, World Food Programme at our Coffee Break! http://bit.ly/3jmcL4L

31/07/2020

"It was a Saturday.

I had said that I’d make a short film of a bumblebee colony for a media story. To see what they were doing, it was necessary to change the lid of a colony to a clear Perspex sheet. I’d planned a top-quality Indiana Jones switcheroo moment.

Whipping the old lid off, I quickly put the Perspex on – but it didn’t fit right and a few bees came out. So I panicked a bit and shoved it some more to make it go on, and then some more bees came out. So I swore a lot. And shoved it a bit more. And then some more bees came out.

By this point, there were about 30 bumblebees flying around the room, all rather angry with me. So I ran out of the room, pursued by four bumblebees. I caught them and put them in special jars.

Then I had to go back into the room to sort out the mess, starting with the open colony. After putting the Perspex lid on properly, I had to catch the rest of the escaped bees – some of which had flown into the light fittings. They weren’t happy (neither was I) and it all took about 2 hours. And then I started filming.

I’d promised the person whose colony it was that I’d take care of them… She wasn’t very happy. Sorry, Anna!"

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

17/07/2020

"One of the things with science, is there is always uncertainty. No matter how good your result is. I think this is very hard, because people want certainties. People want to know. It’s very hard to communicate uncertainties. Often in science you can come up with a set of scenarios that could occur, and you can say, these are the scenarios, and here’s the probability for each. Then people can see, and understand that ‘oh that’s what could happen, but this is the most likely thing’. We need to be upfront and clear about what’s going on.

The question I want to answer is how can we produce more highly nutritious seafood, without damaging the climate? And how do we get people to choose the most sustainable fish to eat?"

Favourite meal?
"Probably something really, really simple. Some kind of fish, grilled or stir-fried, usually with scrambled eggs and green vegetables."

Keyboard, paper or pen?
"Neither! I’d go for a tablet with a stylus. I like the connection of paper and pen, but I like to avoid having tons of paper lying around."

Starter or dessert?
"Starter."

How much does a lamppost cost?
"If I was going to try and buy a lamppost, I’d probably say £150."

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

16/07/2020

"I had no idea what I wanted to do. I thought I wanted to do sports science actually. I was really interested in that. I’d also done a lot of running and triathlons, and I was wondering whether I should give competitive sport a go.

When I did my A-levels, I chose the three sciences and geography at AS-level. Just before my A2-levels started, one of the students at a university I was looking around asked ‘why aren’t you applying to Cambridge?’ I hadn’t really thought about it much. I had a look into it and worked out that I needed maths, so, I then decided to catch up on A2 maths at home, whilst doing my other subjects. I ended up coming to Cambridge and studying natural sciences.

I think I owe quite a lot to my parents. From the age of two or three months I was taken off on backpacking, camping and mountaineering trips. I spent a long time outdoors sitting in a tent in the cold when I was small. But it gave me a good connection to the outdoors. I learned how the environment works. I think that was really important."

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

10/07/2020

"My mum never pressured me to do anything. Or pressured me to not do anything, if that makes sense. She just sort of left me to do what I want, and is proud of me when I do do what I want. It’s, I don’t know, just a general acceptance of who I am and what I do. Rather than pressure to always achieve, or career paths or anything like that. Allowing me the freedom to explore.

It was at school that I started to become quite interested in global health and global disparities in health, between lower and middle income countries. I think I maintained throughout my teenage years that I wanted to be the director of the WHO, but never really put two-and-two together to work out how I’d achieve that ever. I don’t think I’m about to steal the current Director’s job though!

I never thought I’d do a PhD. I mean, I knew I wanted to go to University and do something. I think for a long time, I was actually more drawn towards something like engineering. It was a job that was well-defined. I thought that would be a clearer career path for me. It wasn’t until I got to A-level that I thought… I don’t think that’s really what I want to do, or what I see myself doing for the next 4-5 years. So I just went with a subject that I really love, which was Geography."

What’s your favourite meal that you cook or someone else cooks for you?
"Mushy peas and salt and vinegar."

How much does a lamppost cost?
"I’m going to go with £200, if I actually wanted to buy one myself."

Keyboard, or pen and paper?
"Paper and pen"

Starter or dessert?
"Dessert!"

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

09/07/2020

"I first encountered him in my second year of undergrad, on fieldwork in Morocco. We just started to talk about my interest in health and food security. I think I was about to embark on my undergraduate thesis on a topic that I wasn’t really interested in. He helped me. We reshaped it into something I was really interested in and took me to Burkina Faso for field work. This then led on to my masters in Epidemiology, which then led on to my PhD. So I think in terms of who I’d be grateful to, I’d be grateful to him, my supervisor, for believing in me and helping me to shape those initial interests.

I’m working now in north-eastern India. I’m trying to understand the importance of what we call “wild foods” for local food security and nutrition. “Wild foods” includes things like bush meat, insects, wild fruits and vegetables. It’s been interesting doing this sort of work at this time. These sorts of foods have been demonised recently for the risk of zoonotic disease they may pose. And as well as that, the lockdown situation in India is having profound consequences on food security. So it’s just an interesting time to be working, asking questions like whether these food practices have a place in contemporary society? Can they be an important source of nutrition and food security at this current time?"

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

06/07/2020

The World's First Organic Insect Farm | Look Inside (360 Video)

Would you ever eat a burger made out of edible insects?

Here's a look into the world's very first organic insect farm!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RRv9uqjQsy4

EIT Food FoodUnfolded Matís

Would you ever eat a burger made out of edible insects? Here's a look into the world's very first organic insect farm!

03/07/2020

How has lockdown changed things for you?
"Access to the internet! In Cambridge obviously there is internet. But now, I’m working from home back in Cumbria on the farm, and our internet connection is terrible. So it is a bit challenging, just downloading papers and doing simple things because they take a lot longer, and obviously, attending lab meetings by video chats. I can’t do that on the Wi-Fi just because it breaks up so much.
I’ve been joining lab meetings on my phone, up on the hill, where I can get enough 3G. So that’s quite a big change I think. Going from lab meetings in a lab, to lab meetings in the middle of a field on a hill."

What’s your favourite meal?
"I think my favourite meal is my mum’s butternut squash risotto, it’s just really good, it’s so nice."

How much does a Lamppost cost?
"I would imagine they’re quite expensive. OK, I’m imagining one of those, you know, modern ones you see on streets now, LED ones, I would think, possibly around £1500-£2000... I imagine the cost of manufacturing is probably like £10!"

Keyboard, or paper and pen?
"Paper and pen. Because, it’s weird. When I read scientific papers, I find them way easier to remember if it’s been physical, like a physical copy, on paper. If I write something down, I can remember what I’ve written if I’ve written it by hand, but I can’t remember it as well if I typed it.

Starter or dessert?
"Well both obviously! If you’re a horrible person and you’re forcing me to choose between the two, which is just mean, I would maybe go more dessert than starter. I’ve got a big sweet tooth, and I just really like chocolate cake, or chocolate pudding, or just any pudding for that matter."

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

02/07/2020

"Someone who has always inspired me is my grandad, on my dad’s side. My grandad, I think, is the person who got me interested in plants. I partly have him to thank for where I am. He passed away when I was six. One of the stronger memories I have of when I was small, is him in the greenhouse, digging potatoes. I think that’s probably inspired me to stay interested in plants.

My parents and my family have been farmers for generations, and my grandad farmed in a way that was ahead of its time. He and my dad would do things for the benefit of the wildlife. Nowadays farmers can get grants to encourage wildlife, but my grandad and my dad would always plant trees and dig ponds, just for the sake of the health of the farm and wildlife. I think that’s something which is inspiring."

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

30/06/2020

Join our Cloud HD Video Meeting

Join us this Friday at 2.30pm for Coffee Break to hear about "the history of Seed Banks and the Future of Food" with Helen Curry!

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84354600583?pwd=QVo2TkZ6UUt4cnRxQkVYbkNwbU9jdz09

Meeting ID: 843 5460 0583
Password: 804416

us02web.zoom.us Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars across mobile, desktop, and room systems. Zoom Rooms is the original software-based conference room solution used around the world in board, confer...

29/06/2020

Are you interested in food, technology, or education? Then this one-hour webinar is for you!

Tuesday 7th July, 15:00-16:00 CEST @ https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_O7R34nnWRY-YVK2aHtKP4g

webinar: “Imagining the future of food with Virtual Reality. Spotlight on insect food and algae”

With Essento Matís and EUFIC - European Food Information Council

26/06/2020

"The aim of my research is to try and find ways to make the flowers of broad bean plants more attractive to bumble bees. Bumblebees move pollen between broad bean flowers. This fertilises the flowers and creates new broad beans for us to eat. The goal is to try and find out what it is about the flowers that bumble bees like, and if we can then make those flowers more attractive for bumble bees.

If we can, it would mean that we’d get more food, because the flowers are better pollinated, but also hopefully it’s going to provide better flowers for bumble bees. This will help pollinators and hopefully slow their decline, which is obviously an important problem in the world right now.

I’d like to think I’m not a very jealous person and I don’t envy people. But, if I had to envy anyone, I guess it would have to be people that have more plants than I have, and people who work in botanic gardens.
I can’t really complain, because I am linked to the botanic garden in Cambridge, so I do work in the botanic garden sometimes. I think it just comes down to plants really.

People with more plants than I have would be the people that I envy."

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

26/06/2020

Join our Cloud HD Video Meeting

Join us TODAY at 2.30pm for our Coffee Break to discuss "How small-holder farmers help against hunger and poverty"
Francesca Re Manning is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86845477216?pwd=L1VqM3pXOVR5SnRwRUd4N3E4S09zdz09

us02web.zoom.us Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars across mobile, desktop, and room systems. Zoom Rooms is the original software-based conference room solution used around the world in board, confer...

25/06/2020

"I remember that I wanted to become a medical doctor. But at school, I changed my mind after a dissection of a frog. I realised that I prefer to work with plants.

My research is trying to understand why and how a growth hormone (called Gibberellin) is present in different amounts, in different parts of the plant, as the plant is growing. This hormone is able to move in the plant. In the lab we found a way to make this hormone give off light. We can follow it using a microscope, to see where and how much the hormone is moving in the plant. I especially look at how all this happens only in roots.

A lot of people inspired me, and keep inspiring me. For sure, I would say my first supervisor Dr Paola Vittorioso was the first to inspire me to become a plant biologist. (She is still a group leader at the University of Rome, “La Sapienza”). I loved her and her smile, smiling even when experiments failed."

What or who has been your greatest comfort during the lockdown?
"Cooking and making my own earrings. I have a passion for both, so I’ve been spending a lot of time cooking for me and my husband, making homemade bread and pizza, and creating colourful earrings."

What is your favourite meal, that you cook, or someone else cooks for you?
"Well, I’m Italian so my husband loves my spaghetti bolognese with meat balls, but I love pizza without pineapple, which is a sin for an Italian!"

Keyboard, or paper and pen?
"Paper and pen because I hate computers! In my lab, during an experiment I need to take notes quickly and I write them down in my lab book."

Starter or dessert?
"Well, although it is a tough decision, nothing is better than a dessert (especially a gelato!)"

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

19/06/2020

"I was very clear that I wanted to do something biological or medical, or psychology-related perhaps. That is why I chose Natural Sciences at Cambridge. Quite separate from that, archaeological digs were already my hobby, my passion. I never thought of it as a career, more a delightful activity for the holidays. I carried on imagining I would end in a more mainstream biological/ medical job, and in the meantime went on more and more digs, which was sustainable as there was some payment involved.

Gradually, and to a great extent by accident and circumstance, the two strands of my life converged into an ‘archaeology of food’, for which I enrolled for a PhD, and subsequently got my first teaching job.

So, by the time I left school, I had a fair idea of my aptitude, but was probably still underplaying the importance of my passions and commitments in thinking about a career path. I also at that stage had a rather over-conventional perception of the range of career paths available."

What is a 'fact'?
"If I suggest to you something is a fact, and share with you the tools with which I established it as a fact, then you should be able to, quite independently from me, arrive at your own conclusion that it is indeed a fact. If I can’t do that, it is merely a proposition."

Who inspires you?
"Aneurin Bevan"

What is your favourite meal, that you cook, or someone else cooks for you?
"Moules marinieres"

How much does a lamppost cost?
"Factoring in the light it casts and the safety it brings, it actually makes a profit."

Keyboard, or paper and pen?
"Keyboard"

Starter or dessert?
"Dessert"

EIT Food Instituto IMDEA Alimentación

18/06/2020

Join our Cloud HD Video Meeting

Join us tomorrow at 2.30pm for an informative and stimulating coffee break looking at how aquaculture can be a sustainable way to feed the world

Topic: GFS Coffee Break Series
Time: Jun 19, 2020 02:30 PM London

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/6017176334?pwd=Tlg5cW14TWd6bDNNVVdtbThReWdvUT09

Meeting ID: 601 717 6334
Password: 140280

us02web.zoom.us Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars across mobile, desktop, and room systems. Zoom Rooms is the original software-based conference room solution used around the world in board, confer...

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