Amanda K. Perl

For more than a decade, IFT and the Chinese Institute of Food Science and Technology (CIFST) have worked together to build bridges between food scientists and government officials in the United States, China, and around the world. This collaboration began with informal meetings about how the two organizations could work together to increase the exchange of information among food scientists and has grown to include a biennial meeting and a joint publication.

The joint publication, Global Food Industry magazine, informally known as Food Technology-China, debuted at the IFT Annual Meeting & Food Expo® earlier this year. Representatives from CIFST attended the annual meeting to celebrate the publication’s launch with the IFT Board of Directors. Global Food Industry magazine is distributed to 5,000 CIFST members as well as IFT members living in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau. Approximately 60–70% of the magazine’s content is drawn from IFT publications and reports as well as from Food Technology. The publication also includes original content from IFT—a food safety article co-written by IFT and CIFST members. This specialized content and focus on food safety highlights issues important in ingredient sourcing, global trade, and good manufacturing practices. The magazine is published quarterly, and the next issue will be produced and distributed in March 2010.

“We are excited about the launch of Global Food Industry and the extension of the Food Technology brand,” said Bob Swientek, Editor-in-Chief of Food Technology. “The global reach of IFT’s editorial and scientific content has been extended far beyond our membership and current subscribers, and we look forward to evolving the new publication to meet the needs of the Chinese audience.”

In addition to the joint publication, IFT and CIFST hold biennial educational events in China. These Food Summits began under the leadership of IFT Past President Charles Manley and are designed to engage food scientists in dialogue about relevant and timely food issues. At the November 2009 Summit in Beijing, the focus was on food safety. Sessions featured a wide range of speakers including Li Ning, Deputy Director, National Institute for Nutrition and Food Safety, Chinese CDC, and Yang Yuexin, Director, National Institute for Nutrition and Food Safety, Chinese CDC.

IFT’s speakers and topics included Steve Hather, Director, RQA Asia Pacific Pty Ltd (global sourcing); Margaret Lawson, Vice President, Science & Innovation, DD Williamson (Codex Alimentarius); Manle (GRAS); and Guy H. Johnson, Principal, Johnson Nutrition Solutions (global trends in functional foods). Also attending the Summit as session chairs were IFT Past Presidents Sheri Schellhaass and Herbert Stone, as well as IFT President Marianne Gillette and Executive Vice President Barbara Byrd Keenan.

During the Summit’s opening session, Gillette shared remarks on the importance and value of the IFT–CIFST partnership in promoting a safe global food supply and advancing food technology. Keenan provided an update on IFT’s traceability activities for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

IFT and CIFST also welcomed Christopher Hickey, China Country Director of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, as a featured speaker. The 2009 Summit organizing group was led by Stone and Lawson.

“Our collaboration with CIFST demonstrates how we can work with our global partners to ensure that evidence-based science is the basis for food-related decision making around the world. We value our partnership with CIFST and look forward to what the future will bring,” said Keenan.

To learn more about IFT’s partnership with CIFST and other global activities, please contact Amanda Perl at [email protected].

Amanda Perl is Special Projects Leader, IFT ([email protected]).