14 February 2011

Defence's New Food Innovation Centre

The Australian Minister for Defence Science and Personnel, Warren Snowdon, today announced the establishment of a joint Research Centre in Food Innovation.

The Research Centre will draw on facilities and expertise from the University of Tasmania, CSIRO’s Division of Food and Nutritional Sciences and the Defence Science & Technology Organisation (DSTO).

“The Research Centre in Food Innovation would be able to support and enhance the research activities at DSTO Scottsdale which provides a dedicated food science and technology capability for Defence,” Mr Snowdon said in a press release.

“The new centre, together with the redevelopment of the Scottsdale facility, is expected to significantly enhance DSTO’s ability to provide the ADF with state-of-the-art support on nutrition and feeding strategies.”

“It will draw on the synergies between DSTO, CSIRO and UTAS to develop novel approaches to nutrition and food science that will benefit the performance of ADF personnel as well as the needs of the wider Australian community.”

Mr Snowdon was speaking at the opening of the International Symposium on Defence Nutrition in Scottsdale, Tasmania, where experts from Australia , USA , Norway , New Zealand and Singapore have gathered to discuss strategies for the future development of military nutrition and food science.

The gathering provides an opportunity to address nutrition issues such as the potential for high pressure processing to produce safe, long-lasting, tasty and nutritious foods for combat rations, and the use of nanotechnology for ‘smart’ packaging of ration items.

Outcomes from the symposium will inform the program of the proposed food innovation centre.

Mr Snowdon said the new centre could allow Scottsdale to grow research capabilities in food science and technology, provide access to a broader pool of experts, and foster an enriched science environment for staff.

On a broader level, the new centre could provide significant benefits for the local agricultural industry, local manufacture of ingredients, small business development in Tasmania and employment opportunities.

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