Bill McDowell

Bill McDowell

To say the world looked very different when IFT first launched Food Technology in 1947 would be an embarrassingly obvious understatement.

In the United States, a loaf of bread cost 13 cents, and you could buy two cans of Heinz Cream of Tomato soup for 23 cents. Test pilot Chuck Yeager had just broken the sound barrier, and the first point-contact transistor was being developed at Bell Labs.

Globally, the Marshall Plan laid the foundation for the rebuilding of Europe, while the Truman Doctrine signaled the first whispers of the Cold War. India and Pakistan both became post-colonial, independent states. And the International Monetary Fund formally began operation, charged with fortifying worldwide economic stability.

It was an era of audacious plans and massive change, the pace of which has only accelerated in the ensuing decades.

As Food Technology celebrates its 75th anniversary in 2022, we’re proud to introduce a new publication for a new era that reflects a more global perspective, digital awareness, and active acknowledgement that today, relevance supersedes any legacy notions of loyalty to brands or institutions.

When I joined IFT 14 months ago, I was greeted by an organization that is aggressively evolving to meet the demands of an increasingly complex food system, where science, business, and society are intertwined and interdependent.

With that in mind, my colleagues and I embarked on a journey to reinvent and rediscover what Food Technology could and should be to remain relevant in today’s ecosystem. We studied a range of data points, from membership surveys to reader assessments to digital engagement metrics, then spoke with members to gather additional insights. We studied best-in-breed publications covering multiple segments of business, science, and technology, for insight and inspiration.

This issue debuts the results of that year-long reflection and reinvention process.

Our new format is designed to be flexible and dynamic, with a range of topical sections and article formats.

The new Food Technology is driven by three goals: to affirm IFT’s role as a thought leader in the global food ecosystem by regularly examining the issues driving the science of food, and their subsequent innovations; to celebrate and illuminate the scientists and entrepreneurs driving that change, both within and outside the ranks of our organization; and to contextualize the entire discussion, focusing on the intersection of science, business, and product innovation.

Our new format is designed to be flexible and dynamic, with a range of topical sections and article formats that will expand or contract based on the timeliness and depth of the subject:

Omnivore, our new front section, offers quick reads of topics from consumer trends to food safety to health and nutrition.

Market Trends focuses on consumer-facing trends in food product development and distribution, from demographic research to channel marketing in retail and foodservice.

Innovations profiles companies and individuals leading new product development and examines the macro trends driving that development.

Issues & Insights offers a deeper analysis of challenges and opportunities that impact the global food system, as well as in-depthconversations with those who are embedded in addressing the trends.

Our new Research section previews cutting-edge food science and profiles the individuals who are driving it.

Applied Science covers a range of practical learning in ingredients, food safety, nutraceuticals, processing, and packaging.

Supplier Central offers our supply-chain partners a cohesive, integrated section to share news about new products and services that support food professionals.

Dialogue, our back-page perspective column, is designed to deliver expert opinion that spurs informed discussion and debate on critical topics in food and science.

We’ve also added more direct links to enhanced or supplemental content online, so be sure to check out the URLs and QR codes for quick access.

We hope you like the new direction and the new look. More important, we recognize that a redesign is a process, not a singular event, so we hope that you’ll share your feedback, and your ideas for further refinements. 

About the Author

Bill McDowell is editor-in-chief of Food Technology magazine ([email protected]).
Bill McDowell