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When it comes to getting biotechnology innovations to market, with commercial protection, it can be tough. Around three quarters of patent applications normally fail to cut it. Although biotechnology is recognised as being important for the economy and society, it can also be highly controversial – attracting public protests
Seafood is the main component of European Christmas menus. But with rising concern about chemical pollution in the marine environment, is seafood safe to eat?
Research on gut bacteria may change the way we look at anxiety, depression, and behavioural disorders
Food crises leave the poor in desperation for a long time. To calm the dreadful effects of weather and climate disasters as well as food price volatility it is better if governments forget about managing prices and instead care for the poor, experts say
Venture capitalists of course seek smart inventors and breakthrough products. But candidates with intellectual property and business skills are music to investors' ears
A German blog on innovations management estimates that between 175 and 3,000 ideas are needed to bring just one product or service to the market. Venture capitalists assume that only one out of ten investments pays, says expert Heinrich Cuypers. It seems that the benchmarks for creating a business are extremely tough. But they are not insurmountable.
African and European researchers are employing high-tech water management research methods to help low-tech South African smallholders improve food security. Additionally, extremely high levels of Microcystin toxicity and uranium contamination in important river systems spark calls for extra research on bioaccumulation through the human food chain
Science gives us a heads-up for choosing at the counter and helps in the struggle to save the global fish stocks
Research on biodegradable plastics is a leap toward prevention
Genetically-tailored diets are in vogue. But do they work?
Climate change and man-made events put global food security at risk. But researching how plants produce seeds and evolve could help us find new ways to ensure food security
Over recent years we have been witnessing a significant increase in food intolerances and allergy. But when is it really an allergy? Is it possible to prevent by intervening in the very first few months of life?
Europe’s valuable pig industry is threatened by a plague on its eastern borders with vast destructive potential known as African swine fever. Scientists are fighting back.
The winners of the CommNet Impact Awards were announced last night at the CommNet event: Building the Bioeconomy – Creating Impact through Communication: CommNet’s 3rd Bioeconomy Forum & Final Conference - Dialogues, Debates, Awards at the Crowne Plaza Hotel Brussels, Belgium.
Researchers are now developing personalised food for elderly people with chewing or swallowing problems, by working on printable versions of meat and vegetables
Choosing novel bread for its nutritious value without losing the attractiveness of white bread, is now possible thanks to European research
Genomics is going to improve our understanding of the genetic make-up of pines
Meeting the challenge of developing a sustainable living may require introducing agriculture in urban areas
A novel autonomous biosensor may help scientists to detect environmental hazards in the sea at an early stage. But applying such approach to the marine environment is a huge challenge.
Scientists are developing a real-time monitoring system for offshore aquaculture, so fish and shellfish farmers can be warned in time and prevent epidemic.
European scientists are developing a web-based tool for farmers so they can see what is available in terms of ecosystem services.
Scientists in Italy are experimenting with sound vibrations to replace pesticides. Adapting different eco-friendly methods they are able to boost harvests and open up a new chapter in sustainable farming.
Oil spills and plastic waste are polluting our oceans – destroying marine life and contaminating beaches. Now scientists are exploring how they can get microbes to degrade these substances more effectively and thus reduce the pollution in the sea.
Bacteria in the sea slowly break up oil naturally. But artificially providing them with thriving growth conditions could accelerate oil spill mop-ups.
New ways identified to tackle the presence of small fragments of plastics in the environment, to prevent toxic chemicals absorbed into them from entering the food chain
Newly developed genetic tools may help distinguish wild fish from those escaped from farms, providing a boost for sustainable and environmentally friendly aquaculture.
Domesticating Atlantic Bluefin Tuna may help meet the food industry’s demand for this endangered species. However, making such an endeavour sustainable is a challenging task.
Innovative rapidly inflating balloon technology could keep damaged ships afloat. But more fine-tuning needs to be done and there are some concerns about reliability.
New research is underway that aims to improve detection of seafood contaminants that could be used in prevention and to assess their impact on public health.
Food-based solutions are being devised to counter the ‘vitamin D winters'.
Could your research benefit from exposure in the emerging nations? Have you thought about disseminating your findings beyond Europe?
Obesity puts people at risk of type-2 diabetes. But new research aims to find a combined diet-exercise prescription for keeping the optimal body weight, which may help prevent the disease.
Real-time information from sensors peppered around pigs farms, could herald an era of healthier and faster growing animals
Farmers and engineers have turned a Spanish pig farm into a big brother camp, where the animals are monitored in every aspect of their life. The aim is to optimize farming methods for the benefit of both the pigs and the farmer.
A long-term study evaluating maternal diet’s impact on food allergy in later life is expected to uncover causes of allergy in children
Relying on proteins from fast-growing insects such as maggots presents many advantages, but we need a better knowledge of these protein sources before they can be turned into animal feed
It may not become your favorite dish, but in some parts of the world insects are considered a healthy and tasty source of food. In China animal farmers are using insects also as a low-cost and highly nutritious animal feed. Now nutrition experts are investigating how this protein-rich feed could be introduced to farmers in Europe.
Integrated pest management gains momentum due to European regulations on pesticides reduction. But the challenges are to integrate all alternative methods and to get farmers involved.
Every year 300.000 Europeans are falling ill because of contaminated drinking water. A new high-speed test is being developed to identify the contamination of drinking water much faster than today and thus reduce the number of victims considerably.
European scientists are experimenting with bacteria and algae and turn them into bioplastic factories. Their vision: these microorganisms should produce a large portion of our plastic materials without any petroleum.
Bacteria may be the key to produce useful bioplastics from the gasification of urban waste
Health claims and symbols on food products could have a positive impact on public health. But there’s no clear view yet on what works best.
Increased milk yields in Holstein cows have unfortunately led to lower fertility. But finding new genetic markers at early reproductive stages may help boost fertility
A cocktail of ingredients containing omega-3 fatty acid found in fish oil is being tested in patients with mild cognitive impairment as a means to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s dementia down
A new online resource provides advice to food safety communicators, to avoid knee-jerk reactions when food scares occur
Tailoring people’s diet to optimise their health and minimise their risk of disease, is a new scientific approach called personalised nutrition. But it remains a challenge.
Applying imaging techniques to food structure is helping scientists devise ways of improving the quality of processed food
Reducing mineral fertilisers and chemicals use in agriculture is a priority. Alternatives include safe biochar and compost produced from treated organic residues from plant and animal by-products.
A new research project looks into the possibilities of adapting every aspect of cattle husbandry and selection processes to lower their greenhouse gas emissions
A new European research project seeks grass crops that could be grown and harvested on marginal lands, away from areas suitable for food crops
A new research projects studies the nutrition of babies and infants as a means to improve dietary recommendations to young mothers
Scientists are studying the genetic, social and dietary factors influencing child obesity.
Scientists are attempting to tackle obesity by exploring ways of helping people stay healthy. One research project aims at producing junk-free, albeit tasty, food, whereas another looks at better understanding food consumption stimuli.
New research purports to help people stay healthy by developing a real-time water bug testing that could precisely identify the culprits responsible for waterborne disease
Real-time monitoring of cancer cell processes could soon be possible thanks to nanometric scale diamonds used as biosensors
The actors of the food supply chain need to adapt their practice to ensure both safe and sustainable production while retaining their say on food sovereignty
A new guiding framework is designed to help national governments determine recommended daily vitamins and minerals intake, depending on where they live in Europe.
Scientists attempt to reengineering enzymes to introduce the methods of nature into industrial chemistry
An automatic system to increase agricultural crop yield and simultaneously save resources
Tackling the risks of infection and other illnesses remains a challenge. Might the solution come from the sea?
Researchers strive to drastically reduce the proportion of salt, sugar and fat, considered as factors of health risk in food. But keeping sensory and nutritional properties of foods intact is not so easy.
Food researchers are looking for new ways to reduce the sugar, fat or salt content in ready-made meals without using additives. But will consumers accept this new type of food?
Researchers are looking at environmentally friendly ways of extracting valuable bioactive molecules from marine-based organisms.
Scientists are now attempting to address the dietary habits of people with inadequate nutrition.
Trying to optimise production and use of staple food such as cassava and yams in African and Asian countries could also involve cross-fertilisation of best practices across continents
Scientifically proving the health benefits of polyphenols, particularly in reducing cardiovascular disease risks, can only be useful when taking into account how they fit in the body’s complexity
When legumes improved thanks to genetic analysis act as a test bench for more resilient plants, susceptible of ultimately reducing EU dependence on food and feed imports
Identifying biomarkers in GM food or feed susceptible of identifying their potential adverse health effects, once they have reached the market, has proven a big challenge
Plants tell time. And understanding the workings of their internal clocks can help us improve what we get from our crops.
Algae offer many advantages, for the production of precursor molecules used to produce plastics. But these solutions are still quite a long way away
Food industries are now turning meat left-over into high-protein content ingredients for food supplements, or to be added to processed food. But a EU-wide regulation covering them is still lacking.
Biogas-based energy could solve both the environmental concern of agricultural waste and reduce dependency of fossil fuels, particularly in Eastern Europe, albeit at a steep production cost
Research attempts to balance more efficient uptake during cows’ digestion of nitrogen feed fertiliser to help reduce the level of cattles’ flatulences responsible for generating methane, a greenhouse gas
Reusing the by-products of fruit and cereal processing could help promote the sustainability of the food industry, as long as its overall environmental fingerprint is clearly evaluated
Food market volatility has yet to be understood and there is no definite proof that it is due to speculators
To prevent molecules migrating from plastic packaging into the food they contain, scientists are identifying each critical point where this phenomenon can occur, using a method inspired from aeronautics
The prebiotic potential of seaweed derived nutriments has to be further confirmed before marine nutritional supplements flood the shelves of our health shops
Studies of the bioactive compounds found in apples aim to uncover compounds that have an ability to prevent or alter the risk of serious ailments such as diabetes and heart disease.
Scientists are trying to engineer apples so that the most widely consumed fruit in Europe no longer triggers allergic reactions. But would people want to eat them?
Studying what makes us want to eat, could help devise approaches to prevent obesity, which is becoming widespread in Europe
Composting instead of incinerating or landfilling is a promising way that has until now been hampered by the presence of chemicals in packaging.
By studying the molecular mechanism of food nutrients from a Mediterranean diet in an elderly population, scientist hope to help countering their physical and mental decline
Scientists are targeting disease-causing bacteria present on cows’ skin as an attempt to prevent them from contaminating beef meat, and from posing a threat to consumers’ health.
Despite the availability of new and preventive methods against foodborne diseases, their uptake throughout the entire chain of food production appears to be slow.
Scientists are investigating how shell waste from crustaceans could be turned into polymer precursors as a substitute to petroleum-derived solutions.
How European scientists are a preparing for a change from a fossil-fuel to a bio-based economy.
Producing sea shells and algae alongside fish could provide both an environmentally friendly and economically viable solution to make Mediterranean aquaculture sustainable.
Detective-style high-tech methods are being used in meat factories to trace harmful microbial contaminants.
Proving the health benefits of a new class of compounds extracted from seaweed may require undergoing lengthy trials and comparison with similar substances before they become available as food supplements
Patrick Kolsteren is the general coordinator of the SUNRAY research project designed to contribute to the establishment of research in sustainable nutrition in Africa
A new project is exploring means of turning fish waste into value-added products such as neutraceuticals while attempting to make fisheries a greener industry in developing countries
Scientist are scrutinising our daily exposure to food contaminants across the diversity of European diets—a first that could ultimately help change our eating habit for better health
Research examining every step of the food supply chain to try and cut down the unprecedented amounts of food wasted every year found that individual consumers need to be more involved
DNA analyses may help select the best breeds by predicting how beef will taste once it reaches our palate
Microorganism entering European airports incognito in the luggage of ordinary travellers unaware that they are potential health hazards for the residents of the country they visit
A new approach of civic participation seeking to help determine the future food and health research aims to support the adoption of healthy eating habits
A new EU-backed study aims at scientifically prove claims that fibres called polysaccharides help boost the immune system
Local renewable energy sources such as woodchips offer the advantage of being sustainable and reducing dependency on energy imports. Yet, they are best used for combined heat and power production
A new pan-European project aims to find the determinants of eating behaviour and physical activity of adolescents replaced in the family context
Deciphering satiety signals from the gut to the brain, could help devise smart food designed to communicate feeling of fullness to the brain, and thus help fight obesity
A new database of information on food ingredients will help clarify the fuzzy boundary between food supplements and herbal medicines across Europe
Gasp of relief for people affected by coeliac disease: new ingredients that make gluten-free products tasty and highly-nutritious are expected to soon become available with the help from a food innovation network
Our attraction to foods bloated with energy has made excess body weight increasingly common, particularly in the West. Hence, people’s health has been affected. Scientists are now investigating new ingredients to satisfy our taste buds without impacting our health
Traditional crop varieties of indigenous people could prove even more important than modern agriculture in adapting agriculture to climate changes
New technologies promise cheaper and faster genome map production, leading to reduced fertilizer use, increased crop disease resistance and higher agricultural yields.
During 2009 neonicotinoid-free maize sowing in Italy hardly a bee colony has been lost, bar a suspicious case where some leftover seed from last year may have been used.
The unsustainability of human behaviour is reflected in the dramatic deterioration of the earth’s land, which is already affecting between 1,5 to 2 billion people as the latest report by UNCCD
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement No 289699
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