Division of Food and Drink

Division of Food and Drink

Food & Drink (F&D) is one of three Divisions within the School of Science, Engineering and Technology. F&D has a research profile that is inter-disciplinary across its primary subject areas, all of which lie within two of the Abertay University’s research priority areas, Environment and Society. Expertise spans across the disciplines of Food Science & Technology, Sensory & Consumer Science, Public Health & Human Nutrition and Zymology & Alcoholic Fermentations.

Our Division focuses strongly on Knowledge Exchange and interacts extensively with Industry, mainly through Food Innovation @ Abertay. Over the years we have developed strong links with critical stakeholders such as Innovate UK, Interface, and Scottish Food & Drink Federation. We have received a number of awards for our collaborative projects, which we have completed in partnership with more than 100 Scottish companies.

Academic partnerships are also integral to our research approach. Recent and current partners include Universities from Scotland and the rest of the UK, as well as Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Vietnam, and Singapore.

Our recently upgraded facilities include several well equipped laboratories for food science & technology, including a processing plant; a state-of-the-art Consumer Experience Laboratory and advanced analytical equipment such as Computerised Tomography; Rheometer; Texture Analyser; Particle Size Analyser; LC-MS-MS, GC-MS and more.

 There are currently four main research areas in F&D.

 

Food science and technology

Of particular interest for our researchers are the fields of (i) acrylamide formation during food processing and developing strategies to mitigate this, (ii) developing novel, environmentally friendly extraction and processing methods, (iii) food industry waste utilisation, aiming to contribute to a more sustainable, circular economy and (iv) New Product Development and Reformulation studies.

 

Sensory and consumer science

We examine in depth the factors that affect consumer perception and acceptability of food and drink products. Any New Product Development and reformulation study can be validated in our Consumer Experience Laboratory. Our facilities are often in demand by the food industry in order to gauge consumer acceptability of potential products prior to market release.

 

Nutrition and Public Health

Our researchers explore links between eating habits and health, as well as the role specific bioactive compounds play in the prevention of diseases and the promotion of health of consumers.

 

Zymology & Alcoholic Fermentations

In close collaboration with industry and research organisations, such as the James Hutton Institute and the Scottish Whiskey Research Institute, the team currently evaluates the use of alternative grains and raw material in brewing and distilling; the role of different strains of yeast in brewing; and, the role of wood compounds in the sensory acceptability of whiskey.

 

Food Innovation @ Abertay

Food Innovation @Abertay (FIA) is the commercial arm of the Division and is a practical innovation support service to food and drink businesses. FIA offers creative solutions to business challenges by the use of specialist staff, equipment and facilities. These solutions are tailored to specifically meet business needs and are delivered on schedule and in a cost-effective way. Through FIA, our academics and researchers have had the opportunity to work collaboratively with more than 100 industrial partners, addressing real-world problems and offering technically sound, and commercially viable solutions.

 

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Division Leader

Dr Athina Tziboula-Clarke

Dr Athina Tziboula-Clarke

School of Applied Sciences | Senior Lecturer

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