Food Security MPhil/PhD

Major code: FSMR (MPhil), FSPR (PhD)


Overview

Food Security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.” World Food Summit 1996.

One of the greatest global challenges is to feed the predicted world population of 9 Billion in the next twenty years. Furthermore as countries develop there is an increased demand for variety within the diet and in particular increased demand for meat. This demand for meat will largely be met through increased production of poultry and pigs. Our work in Food Security focuses on two main areas:

  1. Improving food safety in the UK, EU, Africa and Asia through controlling major foodborne pathogens such as Campylobacter and Salmonella.
  2. Increasing productivity through control of endemic disease in the UK including Avian Pathogenic Escherichia coli and in Asia and Africa and through improvements in animal welfare.

Subject Overview

We employ an interdisciplinary approach to our research that ranges from environmental survival of pathogens, through to their biology in foodstuffs.  To achieve this we use epidemiological approaches, mathematical modeling, pathogen and host genomics to studies in microbial pathogenesis and host immune responses. As such the theme of Food Security involves researchers across all departments of IGH.

Examples of projects that may be undertaken in the area of Food Security include:

  • Understanding how stressors in poultry production impact on the immune response and vaccine efficacy.
  • Characterisation of the population biology of Campylobacter jejuni through poultry processing.
  • Determining the impact of chicken genotype on Campylobacter infection.
  • The risks of foodborne infection from backyard poultry production in Africa
  • Developing novel adjuvants for Salmonella vaccines.
  • Survival of Campylobacter in food products.
  • Determining the pathogenesis of monophasic Salmonella Typhimurium variants.