Coordination Of Food Research

Government, university, and private sector establishments have fundamentally different mandates and responsibilities. However, for at least the past two decades there has been a general realization of the value of coordination and cooperation in many areas of research. Linkages have been fostered in a number of ways.

In 1932 a major national provincial network of agricultural services personnel was established. This network included research scientists and other technical personnel from federal and provincial governments and universities. The organization, now known as the Canadian Agri-Food Research Council, has evolved into a complex, diversified organization with its membership drawn from industry, government, and academia as well as representation from the consumers' association. Within the network are provincial and federal food science committees, which provide a meeting ground for members to discuss food research needs and to develop and recommend strategies to meet these needs.

A second avenue that assists in achieving a coordinated and efficient approach to food research is the annual publication of the Inventory of Canadian Agri-Food Research. This provides a project-by-project compilation of food research being undertaken in the reporting establishments. This information is reasonably current and comprehensive, and therefore valuable for planning by research directors, coordinators, and individual scientists.

Perhaps the most effective mechanism for coordination is individual contact. An annual opportunity for this is provided by the national conference of the Canadian Institute of Food Science and Tfechnology (CIFST), the membership of which includes people from all areas of food research and development. CIFST also publishes a bimonthly scientific journal as a means of communicating among scientists.

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