Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

IFT strives to create a world where diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) are universally valued as essential to advancing the science of food and providing a safe, nutritious, and sustainable food supply for everyone. Leveraging DEI is key to IFT’s Mission by attracting and serving a diverse population of members, food science professionals, and staff by embracing a culture of inclusion.

IFT Awarded for Welcoming Environment

IFT received the Welcoming Environment Organizational Award from Association Forum. The award is given to an association that has demonstrated exemplary outcomes in providing an inclusive and welcoming environment and culture.

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Integral to our Promises

As a science of food global community, IFT is uniquely positioned to embrace its diverse community and provide meaningful forums to encourage and foster inclusive opportunities for members to share, learn, and thrive. To emphasize this commitment, IFT's strategic promises include a promise to Include. As part of this promise, IFT has dedicated itself to three important pillars: diversity, inclusion, and equity. With the goal to leverage all three to advance its mission and the science of food. Learn more about IFT's Strategic Promises.

Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity: The Three Pillars

What do we mean when we use the words diversity, inclusion, and equity?


Refers to the composition of a group of people from any number of demographic backgrounds, identities, and the collective strength of their various attributes


The act of establishing systems—which include policies, practices, and procedures—to ensure equitable access to opportunities and resources. Inclusion creates the infrastructure to leverage the collective strength we all bring.


The guaranteed fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for all. Acknowledging the historically underserved and underrepresented populations and that fairness to remedy these unbalances is needed.

21-Day Racial Equity Habit Building Challenge

This year, IFT proudly joins dozens of other organizations stepping up to take the 21-Day Racial Equity Habit Building Challenge. IFT members and staff who register for the challenge will participate in weekly activities and an online discussion forum in the IFT Connect online community.

This virtual event is a self-guided journey examining the history and impact of racism, how it is connected to our food systems, and steps we can take to build equity in our world. The challenge was created in 2016 by Food Solution New England. Content is curated each year by a planning team that represents different organizations working in the food system.

Registration for this event is now closed.

DEI Discussions

As part of our ongoing commitment furthering our organization promise of Include, IFT will host DEI Discussions, a series of live virtual workshops that will address fostering a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

IFT’s DEI Discussions workshops are free to any IFT member and $20 for non-members. To protect the privacy and open nature of the conversations, recordings may not be available.

Past DEI Discussions & Workshops

  • Navigating Careers as Women in the Science of Food
    March 2021  |  Available On-Demand
  • Living with a Vision: Learnings from George Washington Carver’s Life
    January 2021  |  Available On-Demand
  • Beyond the Crisis Response: Turning Initial Dialogue into Sustained Action
    November 2020  |  Available On-Demand
  • I Want to Engage in the DEI Journey. How Can I Do It?
    September 2020  |  Available On-Demand
  • Building Work Relationships in a Virtual Work Environment
    August 2020
  • How to Be Inclusive in a Virtual Work Environment
    July 2020
  • Anger, Frustration, and Hopefulness: Exploring Racial Crises with Intention and Purpose
    June 2020

IFT Diversity & Inclusion Town Hall
IFT held a virtual town hall event for all IFT members during which member and Past President, John Coupland, PhD, CFS, presented the set of recommendations developed by the Inclusive Systems Review Task Force in support of IFT’s Strategic Promise of Include. You can read an overview of the recommendations on our Brain Food blog, or watch a recording of the event.

“Diversity and inclusion enhances and elevates everything to a whole different level, because we get to consider everything from so many different perspectives.”

- Behrouz Tilyayev, IFT member
Diversity and Inclusion

Inclusion Starts with IFT’s Staff

In addition to supporting its members and broader science of food community, IFT strives to provide an inclusive and diverse work environment that embodies its core values of community, integrity, passion, progress, and respect.

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