News & Events

EIT Food – Success For Reading In EU Innovation Funding







Innovative projects to change the way we produce, distribute, consume and value food will kick off this month as part of the University’s engagement with EIT Food – the EU innovation programme and consortium.

EIT Food comprises more than 50 partners from businesses, research centres and universities across 13 countries. The University’s engagement in this initiative is managed through the IFNH.


The next call for EIT Food projects

The dates are still to be confirmed by EIT Food but we expect the next call for projects to be in line with draft dates below:

  • Early February 2018 – Call for EIT Food projects released
  • 16th March 2018 – Deadline for Stage 1 submissions
  • Late April – Feedback on Stage 2 submissions
  • Late April – Stage 2 application process opens
  • 1 June 2018 – Deadline for final applications
  • Late July/Early August – Feedback on final applications
  • 1 January 2019 – Projects start

We have 2 workshops (half-day sessions) planned to support colleagues develop project submissions. The first workshop will take place on Tuesday 13th February at 10.00 – 12.00 in the School of Agriculture, Policy and Development, Frank Parkinson room, and will be focused on colleagues who are familiar with the EIT Food application process and who have either submitted projects in 2017 and/or are already advanced in their discussions with other EIT Food partners about potential project applications. Invitations will be issued for this workshop. The other workshop will be held on Wednesday 14th February in the School of Agriculture, Policy and Development, room 1L08 at 09.30 – 12.00 to support colleagues who are newer to EIT Food, who wish to explore possible ideas for projects. Places at this workshop will be limited (due to room capacity) but please contact us at by 1st February if you are interested in attending.

To discuss any ideas for the next call or any questions about EIT Food, please email Kate Green, KIC Partnerships Manager. For more information on EIT Food, please see You can also sign up for EIT Food newsletter.


Leading food industry partners to visit the University of Reading

On the 21st and 22nd February the EIT Food Innovation Marketplace will be taking place in Reading (at the Madejski Stadium). This is an opportunity for all EIT Food partners to come together to discuss and develop ideas for the next project call as well as to hear important, formal updates from the EIT Food Management Team. Each partner can identify 4 individuals to attend this 2-day event, to represent the organisation. These individuals will act as ambassadors for colleagues across the University.

All EIT Food partners have received an invitation to visit the University on Friday 23 Feb when we will facilitate further networking/meeting opportunities. We will also be offering interested partners the chance to have a tour of key facilities. This additional meeting day will be of particular value to those partner consortiums who are already delivering 2018 projects, as well as those who have already initiated discussions with partners about future project ideas and who could use the opportunity to develop their project plans and proposals. If you are working with EIT Food partners and would like the opportunity to meet, please contact us ( and we can help arrange a meeting time and space for your group. All EIT Food partners have been sent the invitation to the Innovation Marketplace – together with the additional invite to the University for Feb 23, but you may also want to contact your project partners directly to make sure they plan their visit to include the Friday as well.

The role of dairy products and type 2 diabetes risk: where does the evidence stand?

Professor Ian Givens and Dr Sarah Jing Guo are taking part in an exciting project initiated and funded by the Dutch Dairy Association and Friesland Campina, aimed at pulling together the evidence that examines the links between dairy products and the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Ian and Sarah have joined a group of selected experts from around the globe (USA, Canada, Netherlands, Denmark and the UK) to discuss this important issue and they have been specifically asked to take the lead to produce a paper on the outcomes from the expert group presentations and discussion, which we also hope will result in an international, peer reviewed journal.

University of Reading research included in Nutrition Bulletin’s Virtual Issue out today

With the highly anticipated report on saturated fat and health by the UK Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) due in the first quarter of 2018, Nutrition Bulletin has published (January 2018) a Virtual Issue (all papers free to download) on dietary fats. This collection of 13 papers by leading scientists explores the often complex relationships between different types of fat in the diet and health outcomes, such as cardiovascular disease, and overweight and obesity. Read more

Roll out the cheeseboards this Christmas, because cheese might actually be good for you

Eating cheese is good for you: Glamour Magazine has a story on the Reading study led by Prof Ian Givens (Food) which found that eating cheese can reduce the risk of fatal heart attacks and stroke.

Ian Givens, Professor of Food Chain Nutrition and Director of IFNH at Reading University, said: “The biggest element in cheese appears to be the close association between calcium and fat. There is a link between the fat and calcium which makes the fat less digestible.”



Developing an innovation roadmap for climate change adaptation

A wide range of stakeholders came together in Brussels in December to talk about the action and innovation that is required to effectively respond to the challenges of climate change adaptation across much of Europe. The participatory workshop provided an opportunity to share findings from the Climate Adaptation Innovation Roadmap project – a short project led by the University of Reading and commissioned by the Climate-KIC ( on behalf of also EIT Health ( and EIT Food ( Workshop participants included KIC partners from all 3 KICs as well as external organisations working in the area of climate change adaptation, with representation across 8 European countries.  In addition to discussing project findings, workshop participants collaboratively developed the foundations for ‘innovation roadmaps’, both for individual KICs to take forward as well as for potential cross-KIC activity. An energetic day of exchange, learning and co-development! Once project reports have been approved, we will hold a lunchtime seminar to share project finding with colleagues.




Food Matters Live 2017 – External launch of the IFNH

Food Matters Live 2017 provided the perfect occasion for the launch of the Institute to an external audience. The cross-sector event – bringing together the food and drink industry, retailers, foodservice providers, government and those working in nutrition – took place from the 21st – 23rd November at ExCeL in central London. This annual exhibition was attended by thousands of visitors and we were able to promote the Institute and the broad range of expertise and services at the University to a wide range of professionals across the food and drink sector. Effective collaboration between colleagues from the Knowledge Transfer Centre, Research Communications and Engagement Team, and the Institute led to a successful and very busy 3 days. Many people took part in our vote, to identify the biggest future food challenge. Sustainability was the top issue on people’s minds, but it was a close call, with many also feeling that issues relating to human health, consumer trust and food quality are key priorities moving forward. Food Matters Live provided a great platform for positioning the University as the go-to place for industry-academia collaboration.

Food Matters Live 2017

The new Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health (IFNH) will be showcasing the University’s world-class research at the Food Matters Live exhibition at Excel, London 21-23 November.

The Institute aims to harness the University’s extensive expertise and support effective and long-lasting collaborations with external partner organisations. The Food Matters Live exhibition will give hundreds of food sector companies and organisations the chance to learn about the breadth of expertise and the world-leading facilities available at the University and explore the opportunities for impactful collaboration.

Food companies will have the opportunity to hear from some of the University of Reading’s leading experts who are participating in the seminar series:

Academics speaking at Food Matters Live will be:

  • Professor Parveen Yaqoob: “Healthy ageing: latest research”, Tuesday 21 November, 10:30-12:00, Room 7
  • Dr Lisa Methven: “The future of fat: latest research and recommendations”, Tuesday 21 November, 14:15-15:45, Room 4
  • Professor Ian Givens: “The role of food tech innovation shaping the food and drink industry and supporting consumer trends”, Wednesday 22 November, 16:00-17:00, Room 3

For researchers thinking of attending Food Matters Live (which is free), please visit the IFNH exhibition stand, number 710, where we will be showcasing our work and aiming to create connections with potential partner organisations.

To find out more about the Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health please visit the website

The Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health officially launched on 23 October

The Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health (IFNH) had its internal launch on 23rd October and is a valuable addition to a family of interdisciplinary institutes that draw on research across the University of Reading and facilitate new cross-disciplinary research to enhance well-being, society and the economy.

Colleagues from across the University gathered to hear about the Institute’s remit and its plans to drive innovation in food production, processing and nutrition in order to deliver better diets and health.

Please register to become part of our growing University community and receive regular updates and communications, including information on potential funding opportunities. If you’d like more information, please contact Kate Green, Partnerships Manager (ext. 8489;

Food. The future Medicine Conference 2017

Food: The Future Medicine, a recent conference organised by the College of Medicine, stimulated recognition and debate about how food can be an important means of preventing disease as well as an important adjunct to medicine when we are ill. Key speakers came from across the worlds of research, food production, retail and medicine,. Professor Ian Givens, Director of the IFNH, contributed to the debate on whether dairy products are good or bad for us and raised the question of the advice that should be given to patients on eating these foods. Being part of such leading debate and discussion is a critical role for the IFNH, both to share and exchange experience and insights as well as to foster collaborations with like-minded individuals and organisations.