The science and technology topical sessions will be anchored by a lively panel discussion setting the stage for a series of thought-provoking presentations, discussions, and fireside chats taking a closer look at the importance of science and technology in helping to solve important challenges impacting the sustainability of our global food supply and our planet.
Featured Panel with Live Q&A
Building Food Security into Resilient Cities
Monday, July 13, 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. CT
By the year 2050, two thirds of the population will live in mega cities. Today’s cities are being engineered to be more sustainable, safer, and socially responsible, in pursuit of the promise of resiliency. This panel and supporting sessions will provide opportunities to learn and explore the impacts of key decisions, and how we can all work together to build a more secure food system for the future.
- Moderator- Harry Epstein, p-Chip Corporation
- Ted Fishman, Author of China, Inc.
- Alison Grantham, Grow Well Consulting
- Geoffrey Hewings, UIUC Department of Finance
Science & Technology Sessions
4 New Technologies Transforming Sensory and Consumer Science
This symposium discusses four new technologies - app-based data collection, machine learning, alternate data streams, and graph-based knowledge management - currently transforming sensory and consumer science. Each technology is discussed by subject-matter experts grounded in everyday experience as sensory and consumer scientists.
This session will explore:
- Sensory on the Edge: Advances in App-Based Data Collection
- Machine Learning in Sensory: What's New (and What's Not)
- Alternative Data Streams and their Value to Sensory and Consumer Scientists
- How Graph Databases Help Sensory and Consumer Scientists Find New Insights in their Historical Data
Advancements in Novel Processing and Packaging Technologies for Shaping the Future of Food Manufacturing and Consumption
Advances in food processing, packaging, and digital technologies are enabling the food manufacturing industry to satisfy consumer demand for convenient, safe, sustainable, and healthy processed foods. This session features the highly coveted division lecturers from the Food Engineering, Nonthermal Processing, and Food Packaging divisions, highlighting highlight how the research advances and innovations in food engineering, nonthermal processing, and packaging technologies that help to shape the future of the food manufacturing industry. For example, consumer demand for healthy food and beverage products has spurred a growth in the plant-based protein foods.
Bridging Science and Practice to Accelerate Innovation and Integration of Ultraviolet Light Technology and LEDs in Food Processing
This session will discuss the current state of technology commercialization and international regulatory environment, knowledge gaps in product and process development, and validation standards that need to be addressed to accelerate UVC technology implementation. Also, the essential differences in approaches in UVC treatment of water, beverages, and food surfaces, including process requirements and existing practices, will be discussed and have to be considered for successful UVC process development and validation. This will include major requirements for UVC preservation of dairy products, various beverages and solid foods, principles of establishment of equivalent preservation UVC dose, quality and toxicological effects, challenges of process validation and effective designs of UVC commercial systems.
Coproducts from Pulse Ingredients Processing: Valorization and Application in Food Products
This session will discuss recent research advances on how to valorize coproducts such as starch, fibers, steep water, and aquafaba from pulse seed processing and their potential applications in food products. At the end of this symposium the audience will have learned the importance of coproducts from pulse ingredients processing as valuable raw materials to include in certain food applications.
Flavor Associated Applications in Health and Wellness Products
Health and wellness of food and beverages is a broad subject that continues to evolve and be of increasing interest to both consumers and manufacturers. Consumers' interest in healthy lifestyles and their demand for healthier products and services continue to escalate. Flavor plays an important role in the health and wellness arena in flavored consumer goods. This could include the fundamental understanding of smell and taste association and the impact on sugar reduced beverages and drinks (presenter 1), flavor associated refreshing perception and application in sugar reduced beverages (presenter 2), plant-based products and full-service wellness offerings (presenter 3), and clean labels in general (presentation 4) and used in alcoholic free beer (presenter 5). These are the latest trends happening for flavor and food industry. This symposium will cover scientific aspects and industrial practices of all five topics.
Food Structure Design: Understanding of Food Microstructures
Understanding of microstructure and functionality correlations leads the recent trends in food research. Employing a wide range of tools to characterize and understand food microstructure is essential in food structure design, and this symposium aims to bring scientists and researchers together to share their findings and learnings in this area. Although microscopy and microanalysis techniques are constantly used by food scientists, many challenges are faced in this field due to the highly complex nature of the food, as well as the totally different intent in which these techniques were originally developed to work. This symposium will showcase works from the food industry and academia where microscopy-related techniques are practiced to characterize food microstructures and to draw their relationship with functionalities. Topics include, but are not limited to, light, fluorescence, electron, ion, X-ray, and spectroscopy based microscopy techniques with their applications in food research.
Improvement of Protein Functionality by Protein Glycation Using the Maillard Reaction
This session will consist of one introductory presentation in which the Maillard conjugation will be introduced to the audience, covering its principles and different methods to create and evaluate Maillard conjugates. The other two presentations will cover practical cases in which the Maillard reaction has been successfully used to improve the functionality of animal- and plant- based proteins without compromising their safety.
Ingredient and Formulation Design for Healthy Bakery Products
In this session the latest insights in reversed engineering approaches to the design of food formulations and food ingredients will be provided. An integrated view on multidisciplinary aspect of food design, combining quantitative molecular and material science aspects of food structuring with the digestibility and physiological responses of the structured food matrices, will be presented. These approaches hold promise for the development of food ingredients and food products with targeted nutritional benefits and towards a shift to nutrient dense, sustainable diets. Special attention will be given to bakery applications and the development of sustainable, plant-based ingredients such as low digestible starches and dietary fibers with targeted prebiotic effects.
Novel Applications of Emerging Powder Technology
Even with the recent advancement of powder technology for food applications, there are still the challenges and opportunities to meet the consumers' demands for highly nutritious, convenient and great tasting foods. This session will discuss the use of newly developed powder technologies to address the challenges and introduce the innovative tools for manufacturing high quality food products. Details of the utilization of a novel low temperature drying technology to concentrate, encapsulate and stabilize flavor actives to make nutritional bars rich with authentic flavor and aroma will also be discussed.
Overcoming Common Challenges with Emulsions: The Science Behind the Solutions
Food emulsifiers have always been critical for product development to meet product performance and consumer sensory expectations. They ensure that non-dairy creamers are insensitive to water hardness, they create the desirable cloudy appearance in juices and sports drinks, and they're essential for the thick, creamy texture in sauces and dressings, and much more. However, the perfect emulsion can be tricky for food formulators to achieve for a variety of reasons. Challenges that food scientists often encounter with emulsions include emulsion stability, oil-loading capacity, preventing oxidation, bioavailability of encapsulated active ingredient, labeling requirements, the ease-of-use by customers, and so on. This session leverages the expertise and experience of texture scientists to equip food formulators with the tools and knowledge they need to anticipate and trouble-shoot problems as well as identify solutions.
Plant-Based Eating Is the Future: How Do We Drive Nutrition, Technical Innovation, and Consumer Acceptance?
The plant-based food boom continues. Many questions still exist around the drivers for plant-based eating, ingredient supply, innovation, and consumer demand. This session will take a close look at current products in the plant-based alternative category, including breaking down the ingredient list and associated nutrition facts. Recommendations on how to address the concerns of the many and varied reviewers suggesting consumers should “eat this, not that” will be conveyed, along with suggestions of innovations that can help new products to rise above these concerns. Formulation, processing, and packaging challenges will be discussed from a technical context along with how to deliver on taste, nutrition, food safety, and quality. New sustainable processing technologies that can produce healthy, value-added foods from existing and emerging plant sources will be discussed.
Plant-Based Foods: Designing Ingredient, Formulation, and Consumer Opportunities from the Ground Up
The market for sustainable alternative protein food products exceeds $4 billion in the US, with significant potential for growth. Plant-based milks already comprise over 13% of the dairy market, while plant-based meat alternatives continue to gain momentum and awareness with consumers and investors. However, significant hurdles remain for plant-based food manufacturers to create products that are equally compelling as their meat or dairy counterparts. The emergence of synthetic biology as a tool to precisely manufacture functional, animal-free food ingredients in a sustainable way is demonstrating high potential to deliver attractive formulation options to our industry. In addition, the application of advanced physicochemical characterization techniques to food systems is helping generate significant insight into the hierarchical material behavior of food and how key properties influence the eating experience. These combined approaches provide the opportunity to significantly improve our ability to design and deliver superior plant-based foods to consumers.
Protect the Power of Flavors
The food and beverage segment is significantly driven by consumer trends. One relevant trend is the growing number of experiential consumers who are seeking exotic flavors and colors. Another is the ever-increasing number of consumers who are concerned about natural and cleaner ingredient offerings. These trends require food and beverage manufacturers to adapt and create new formulations where flavors are key ingredients to their success. However, creating a successful new product isn't solely about compounding the ideal flavor profile; maintaining freshness and stability of the flavor throughout its shelf life is also critical, and formulation, raw materials, and packaging play equally important roles in that regard.
Protein Processing 2.0: Next Gen Scalable Technologies for Advancing the Functionalization and Sustainable Production of Protein Ingredients
According to the 2019 Innova Insights, global new product launches with protein claims have grown at a whopping 21% (CAGR) since 2014. Protein ingredients play an integral role in food products by providing nutrition, taste, and functionality, which are all key for a great consumer experience. Moreover, sustainable food production is paramount to address the challenge of providing valuable nutrition to the growing global population. This symposium will survey the current food protein processing landscape and highlight emerging, cutting-edge, and at the same time immensely scalable technologies such as micro- and nano bubbles, high pressure jet, and high solids spray drying that will shape the future of protein processing to deliver highly functional and more sustainably produced high protein ingredients to serve today's evolving consumer needs.
Shelf Life: The Cinderella of the Sensory World, Tips, Tricks and Thought Provokers to Turn the Mundane into the Glass Slipper of the Company
This panel discussion will start by laying out the current best practices to consider when setting up a shelf life program in your company taking into consideration available resources needed to execute, portfolio size you need to manage, storage conditions your products require, the end consumer/customer, and product preparation, along with the business risks your company is willing to assume. We will follow by hearing from three seasoned professionals working across various industries to share their current programs and present real-life challenges that they face. These professionals will span the food, beverage, and ingredient/flavoring industries as each face their own set of challenges.
The National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard: A Discussion of Regulatory Requirements and Testing Methodology
On July 29, 2016, Public Law 114-216 amended the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946 (7 U.S.C. 1621 et. seq.) (amended Act), to require USDA to establish a national, mandatory standard for disclosing any food that is or may be bioengineered with a mandatory compliance date of January 1, 2022. There are several ways to determine whether a food or ingredient contains detectable modified genetic material. One of the most commonly used methods is based on genetic DNA analysis, such as Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). This session includes speakers across industry and government: a USDA speaker will discuss an overview of the Standard and acceptable testing method selection; a laboratory manager will discuss different testing methodologies available to industry along with accreditation and an international perspective; and, a scientist will discuss testing methodologies for different ingredients and how industry is preparing to implement the Standard.
The NOVA Disruption: A Call-to Action for the Food Industry. An Explanation of the Issues Arising from the NOVA Classification and How to Counter them with Science and Sensibility
The NOVA movement classifies processed foods into four categories (unprocessed or minimally processed foods, processed culinary ingredients, processed foods, and ultra-processed foods and drinks) based on level and purpose of food processing but not on nutritional value, which matters most to health and wellness. The result is disruption in practically every sector of the food industry because of unfounded skepticism of the value of processed foods and a misguided belief that these so-called 'ultra-processed foods' contribute to chronic non-communicable diseases, and even cancer. Despite scientific evidence over the course of the last century of the benefits of processing such as enhanced food quality, removal of potential innate toxins, and improvement of nutrient bioavailability NOVA proponents state that packaged foods are far from a solution, and actually contribute to unhealthful dietary patterns that lead to poor health. The proposed session is a call-to-action for food scientists and to all stakeholders in the food industry at the helm of being disrupted by emerging misguided regulations along with suggestions of steps for each stakeholder to confront the challenge of disruption and help mitigate the risks of unintended consequences.
IFTNEXT Featured Science & Technology Sessions
How Will Artificial Intelligence Impact a Food Technologist’s Role?
Artificial intelligence (AI) solutions can play a pivotal role in significantly improving the success of new and seasonal products. AI can be used to analyze these data points and provide direction for new product development and the go-to-market strategy for product launches. Buying behaviors and customer sentiments help identify common characteristics of products that have succeeded versus those that have failed. And, depending on the access to outside data, competitive and emerging market intelligence could even be leveraged to help gain market leadership. Join this session to understand how AI could change the way food technologists ideate and partner with their marketing team to innovate, grow market share, and increase customer loyalty.