skip to content

Cambridge Global Food Security

An Interdisciplinary Research Centre at the University of Cambridge

Welcome to the Coffee Break Seminars. We introduced this series of webinars in June 2020 as a relaxed online learning, networking, and discussion platform for our food security community. Seminars take place every Friday during term time at
2 pm, GMT.  

If you would like to present your work at this forum, please contact our Programme Manager Francesca Re Manning. 

The next seminar is on 5 November at 2 pm, GMT. PhD Matthew Keeble (MRC Epidemiology) will discuss: 'New' ways of buying takeaway food: what do we know about online food delivery services?

Please join us using the Zoom link below. 

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 916 5336 0467
Passcode: uEN40Lyv3e

Upcoming seminars:

  • 29 October HALF TERM - no seminar 
  • 12 November. Dr Rachel Carmenta (UEA). "Between a rock and a hard place: the burdens of uncontrolled fire for smallholders across the tropics".
  • 19 November. Dr Silviu Petrovan (Zoology). "Can we prevent the next zoonotic pandemic? An interdisciplinary solution scan of options”
  • 26 November. Dr Angie Burnett (Plant Sciences) "Plant Stress, Climate Change and Food Security"
  • 3 December. Dr Matt Holmes (CRASSH). "Selling Biotechnology: An Archival Exploration of the GM Controversy".

Guidelines for our presenters:

The format: 1 hour session; 20 minutes presentation followed by an interactive discussion/question time.

The audience profile: mainly interdisciplinary students and academics interested in global food security.    

Please ensure that any audio-visual content, such as videos or podcasts, are working as intended before the session.

Photographs and videos: please caption as necessary, and use visuals that are specific to your work, as opposed to generalised content. Whenever possible, please identify and/or explain the context. This is particularly useful if people, especially minor children or vulnerable persons, are shown. 

Please provide your talk pdf at size 15 Mb or less for publication on this page.

Previous seminars:

22 October 2021. Dr Tom Thirkell (Crop Science Centre) discussed: 'Cereals and Soil Fungi: using symbiotic microbes for agricultural sustainability.'

15 October 2021. PhD student Rijak Grover (Sociology) discussed the impact of women's rural employment on food security and nutrition in West Africa (Benin). Please find the seminar recording here.

8 October 2021. Dr Fumiya Iida (Engineering) discussed how robotics can assist agriculture and food security. Please find the seminar recording here.

24 September 2021. PhD Emily Servante (Plant Sciences) discussed harnessing the genetic potential of rice for global food security. Please find the seminar recording here.

17 September 2021. Dr Chioma Ngonadi (Archaeology) discussed how understanding our ancestors' agricultural practices can help improve food security. Please find Chioma's International Women's Day interview here. Please find the seminar recording here. 

2 July 2021. The launch of the Forgotten Crops Society, founded by researchers from the Global Food Security IRC, Mohamed VI Polytechnic University (Morocco), the Crop Trust, OCP North America, and the National Museum of Ethnology of Osaka (Japan). Please find the seminar recording here.

25 June 2021. Dr Miriam Alvarado and Hannah Ford: Whether sugar taxes are an effective way of reducing the consumption of fizzy drinks, with comparisons between Barbados and the UK. Please find the seminar recording here.

18 June 2021. Hamish Symington (Plant Sciences): How improving flowers can help us feed the world and ensure biodiversity. 

11 June 2021. Franziska Fischer (Plant Sciences): Cereal killers: who they are and how they impact our lives.  

4 June 2021. Gareth Hollands (Psychology): Reducing food energy consumption. Please find the seminar recording here.

28 May 2021. Dr Ryan Nhering (Department of History): Brazil's model to feed the world through its public research programme in agriculture. Can we talk about a Brazilian Green Revolution? Please find the seminar recording here.

21 May 2021. Dr Enrica Porcari, Chief Information Officer and Director Technology from the World Food Programme: How technology and innovation can assist to meet the 'Zero Hunger' UN Development Goal. Please find the seminar recording here.

14 May 2021. Dr Andre Cabrera Serrenho: Plastic, the 'P' word. Please find the seminar recording here.

7 May 2021. Nadia Radzman (Plant Sciences): African Yam bean to reduce food insecurity in Nigeria. Please find the seminar recording here.  

23 April 2021. Emelyn Rude (History): From Losing Oysters and Loving Shrimps: a case study in the culinary response to an ecological catastrophe. Please find the seminar recording here.  

26 March 2021. Dr Sarah Dalzell: Nutrition in Context: Are millets a strategy for sustainable, healthy diets in The Gambia?

19 March 2021. Dr Amelia Hood (Zoology): The impact of understory vegetation management on predators in oil palm plantations in Sumatra, Indonesia.

12 March 2021. Dr Curie Park (Institute for Manufacturing): How to address food industry challenges (including sugar, cocoa, meat, fish, vegetables, and cereals), such as healthy nutrition and sustainable food systems. Please find the seminar recording here.

5 March 2021. Dr Angela Cano (assistant curator, University Botanic Gardens): How we can safeguard rare plants on earth and ensure they can benefit everyone in the future. Please find the seminar recording here.

26 February 2021. Dr Alessandra Galie of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI): How livestock management can assist in empowering rural women, particularly at a time when livestock itself is under threat from environmental challenges. Please find the seminar recording here.  

19 February 2021. PhD student Dolly Theis (CEDAR): Is the UK Childhood Obesity Plan fit for purpose? Looking at policy and evidence. Please find a recording of the seminar here (University of Cambridge Raven ID needed).

12 February 2021. Dr Emma Garnett (CISL): What approaches work to increase vegetarian sales  and reduce meat consumption?  

5 February 2021. Dr Giles Yeo (Clinical Biochemistry): Is obesity a choice?

29 January 2021. PhD student Adam Muhammad Adam (Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology): How smartphone integrated soil sensors can help small-scale farmers to achieve sustainable soil diagnosis and nutrient management.  

22 January 2021. Dr Payam Mehrshahi (Plant Sciences): How our improved understanding of algae is helping develop new sustainable and nutritious ingredients for future kitchens and animal feed.

4 December 2020. PhD student Harriet Barlett (Zoology) and Dr Amy Munro-Faure (Cambridge Zero): How farming can be more sustainable and make our Christmas greener.  

27 November 2020. PhD student Rhiannon Wood (Vet Studies): Superbugs in our food: should we be worried?  

20 November 2020. Dr Nazia Mintz-Habib (Resilience and Sustainability Research Programme) : Food security in a warming world.

13 November 2020. Dr Federica Sulas (Archaelogy): Farming & feeding the Ethiopian highlands: practicing food security through time.

 November 2020. Professor Michel Ghanem (Plant Sciences, University Mohammed VI, Morocco): Neglected no more: why some crops are orphans - and what can be done for food security.

23 October 2020. Professor Martin Jones  (Archaelogy): FAO's "Globally Important Agriculture Heritage Systems" (GIAHS).

16 October 2020. Dr Paolo Bombelli (Bio-Chemistry): How plants and solar-panels can co-exist to produce green energy and better crops.

9 October 2020. Dr Harriet Hunt (Archaeogenetics): Food security and the archeology of minor crops.

2 October 2020. Dr Lili Jia (Institute for Manufacturing): How can we incentivise the architecture of a sustainable food system?

25 September 2020. PhD student Charlotte Milbank (Zoology): Wild Foods, Hunger and Nutrition - harnessing knowledge for sustainable food security.

18 September 2020. Dr Matt Davey (Plant Sciences): Climate Change is turning Antarctic coast green.

31 July 2020. PhD student Chioma Achi (Vet Studies): Salmonella as a threat to food security. 

24 July 2020. Dr Milorad Radakovic (Vets Studies): Safe food or food as perceived as safe.

17 July 2020. PhD student Bright Jaato (Engineering): Solar energy technology for water purification in Africa.

10 July 2020. Professor Cristiane Derani (Law): Sustainable Food Systems in the EU.

3 July 2020. Dr Helen Curry (History): History of Seed Banks and the Future of Food. 

26 June 2020. MPhil student Daniella Salazar-Herrera (Development Studies): How can small folder farmers help fight poverty and hunger?

19 June 2020. PhD student David Willer (Zoology): Aquaculture and sustainability.

12 June 2020. Dr Jean Adams (CEDAR): Food Insecurity in the UK.

5 June 2020. PhD student Dorien Braam (Vet Studies): Infectious Disease in misplaced populations.

Image credit:

These talks are part of EIT Food's #AnnualFoodAgenda project.  





All University staff, except those needed for business-critical activity, are now working remotely. Please contact us by email, and find the latest COVID-19 information here

Global food security is a major research priority for UK and international science.

Cambridge Global Food Security is a virtual centre at the University of Cambridge. We promote an interdisciplinary approach to addressing the challenge of ensuring all people at all times have access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and preferences for an active and healthy life. 

Please contact the Programme Manager D.ssa Francesca Re Manning to request information, share information, or join our mailing list.