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Dr Jon Wilkin

Role: Lecturer

Division: Division of Food & Drink

School/Department: School of Science, Engineering & Tech

Telephone Number: +44 (0)1382 308783



I am a Senior Food Technologist at Food Innovation @ Abertay and I am also a Lecturer at Abertay University.

Food Innovation @Abertay (FIA): is a practical solution based commercial aspect of the food department at Abertay. My main duties include working on a range of issues, from new product development to consumer research, food safety and nutritional information. We work with a range of businesses from micro all the way up to multi-nationals. We credit ourselves on building collaborative partnerships with Scottish SME's Food and Drink Industries.

I also teach food safety to levels 7-9 (BSc) and level 11 (MSc), this includes HACCP, and due to our new course starting this year I will be teaching food quality management too! This includes BRC, ISO, SALSA and other food safety and quality management systems.

My research revolves around:

Textural studies on food products
Maillard Reaction (processing and roasting)
Lipid Oxidation (shelf life)
Oil body characterisation (oil bodies are small lipid storage organelles within the peanut cellular structure).


Senior Food Technologist; Teaching Fellow; PhD; Research, Peanuts; Food Safety; New Product Development; SMEs; Consumer Research; Product Reformulations; Shelf Life; Food Texture


I am module leader on the following modules for the BSc's Food Science and Technology, Food and Consumer Science, Food Product Design and Food, Nutrition and Health:

  • FC0703A - Hygiene and Food Safety (1st year)
  • FC0905A - Food Safety Management (3rd year)

Other teaching commitments are: MProf Food and Drink Innovation (Packaging and Sustainability)

  • FC1121A - Food Safety Management
  • FC1119A - Food and Drink Innovation Project

I am also Stage Tutor for the MProf Programme and Year 1 Tutor for the Undergraduate Courses


Current research projects include: the use of computational tomography for ingredient dispersion and macro structure in free from food products and the formation of bolus during mastication of free fromm food products.

I have a background in lipid oxidation in stored peanuts and peanut products; and characterisation of peanut oil bodies (storage organelles within the oil seed).



  • Wilkin, J.D., Ashton, I.P., Fielding, L.M. and Tatham, A.S. (2013). Storage stability of whole and nibbed, conventional and high oleic peanuts (Arachis hypogeae L.). Food and bioprocess technology. DOI 10.1007/s11947-012-1033-0.



A member of the Institute of Food Science and Technology

I am a Food and Drink Ambassidor with the Scotland Food and Drink Federation (SFDF)

I also co-sit on the Cross Party Food Group in Hollyrood

Knowledge Exchange

In collaboration with Jennifer Bryson (Business Development Director of Food Innovation @ Abertay) and other members of the FIA team, we were successfully  awarded with 16 innovation grants like the Innovation Voucher (Interface), Innovation Portal, SPARK awards (Bioscience KTN), Interface Food and Drink Pump Priming and Innovation Voucher Follow On Awards.

The main body of work involves and our speacilism is in:

  • New product development,
  • Consumer studies
  • Food styling and photography,
  • Food hygiene and safety
  • Processing, up-scaling / technical solutions
  • Marketing and consumer research

Generally to give you an idea of what we do, I have highlighted some projects, these are by no means the breadth and depth of what we can offer.

Knowledge Transfer Partnership

Team Members: Jonathan Wilkin, Jennifer Bryson, Joe Akunna, Industrial Partner, KTP Partnership

Abertay University and Ivan Wood and Sons Ltd. - to develop novel ways of using the waste from vegetable peelings through funding from the Scottish Funding Council and Innovate UK.

New product development

Team Members: Jonathan Wilkin, Jennifer Bryson, Industrial Partner, Innovation Voucher

In collaboration with the industrial partner, we developed a range of lower fat cheesecakes.  This allowed the company to supply into the NHS.

Consumer acceptance towards a food product

Team Members: Jonathan Wilkin, Jennifer Bryson, Maxine Clark, Industrial Partner, Innovation Voucher

In collaboration with the industrial partner, Food Innovation @ Abertay worked on an Interface Voucher to develop their range. We worked with them on recipe development, shelf-life and storage tests (including microbiological and organoleptic), and consumer acceptance of the stored product.

Development of an allergen free batter

Team Members: Jonathan Wilkin, Jennifer Bryson, Industrial Partner, SPARK Award

In collaboration with the industrial partner, Food Innovation @ Abertay worked on an SPARK Award to develop a allergen free batter mix. Looking at the different roles of flours/starches to develop their flour, we used statistical analysis and experimental designs to provide the company with the crispiest batter possible.


  • 1 Interface Food and Drink Competition (2015-2016) £50,000
  • 7 Innovation Vouchers (2015-2016) £35,000 (PI: 3)
  • 1 Knowledge Transfer Partnership (2012-2017) £91,000 (PI)
  • 25 Innovation Vouchers (2014-2015) (£125,000 total) (PI: 16)
  • 1 Feasibility study grants from Food and Drink Innovation (2014-15)
  • 1 Knowledge Transfer Partnership (2015-2017) - 2 Year Project (PI) - £121,000
  • 18 Interface Innovation Voucher (2013-14) £90,000 (Total) (PI: 9)
  • 2 Feasibility study grants from Food and Drink Innovation (2013-14) £20,000 (PI: 1)
  • 12 Interface Innovation Voucher (2012-13) (PI: 6)
  • 1 PoP Food and Drink Innovation (2012-13)
  • 2 Innovation Portal Technology Feasibility Study grants (2012-2013) (PI: 1)
  • 8 Interface Innovation Vouchers (2011-2012) (PI: 2)
  • 2 SPARK Awards (2011-2012) (PI: 2)
  • 2 Innovation Portal Technology Feasibility Study grants (2011-2012)
  • 1 Interface Food and Drink Pump Priming grant (2011-2012) (PI: 1)
  • 1 Interface Follow On Innovation Voucher (2011-2012)


I'm involved in 'How the cookie crumbles' with Baldragon Academy for Dundee Science Festival (2012); working with Websters High School (Kirriemuir) with the Princes Trust developing a new food product (2014-15).

I was on the Beachgrove Garden (November 2013); STV's 'Too good to waste - Passing it on...' (March 2014), and the BBC's Fake Britian (March 2015). We have just filmed Food Science videos for Chemistry Teachers on the Maillard Reaction, Lipid Oxidation, Enzymic Browning, Smoking, TLC and Emulsions (2015).

Various events, Scotland Food and Drink Federation Ambassador, Invited Speaker for the Free From Foods Interface Highlands and Islands Seminar; and Cafe Science Event (June 2015), Friends of Dundee University's Botanical Gardens (December 2015) speaking about my research.

I have co-created CPD events for Home Economics Teachers and public engagement with the Dundee Food and Flower Festival (2014) in the Discovery Tent; Teachmeet at St John's RC High School (2014).