IFST North of England Young Scientist Competition 2015

8 May 2015

SCI's Food Group has close links and regularly collaborates with the IFST. For many years the Group has supported the IFST's Young Scientist Competitions and contributes towards the winners' cash prizes. The top three winners also receive one year's free membership to SCI and IFST and are invited to join SCI's Food Committee as a Young Ambassador.

The latest Young Scientist Competition, hosted by the IFST North of England Branch, took place on 29 April at Manchester Metropolitan University. Students were from the University of Leeds; University of Huddersfield; Liverpool John Moores University and Manchester Metropolitan University.

Judges on the evening were: Wayne Martindale, Chair & Head Judge, Principle Research Fellow, FMCG Group, Sheffield Business School; Ivan Bartolo, Sea Fish Industry Authority; Ian Blakemore, Consultant, Protem Projects; Craig Duckham, Consultant, CD R&D Consultancy Services Ltd and Chair of SCI’s Food Group.

Magomed Muradov (pictured right), a PhD student from Liverpool John Moores University (Radio Frequency and Microwave Engineering Group) won the post-graduate prize for his presentation on the use of microwave sensor techniques for monitoring meat drying and curing.

Dr Alex Mason, Magomed's Director of Studies, said ‘I am very proud of Magomed's achievement in the competition.  It is strongly deserved for all of his top quality work over the past 14 months, in addition to him making great efforts to hone the presentation of his work’.

IFST North of England Young Scientist Competition 2015The panel of independent industry judges (pictured left with the winners), noted that the standard from all 5 of the postgraduate competitors was very high.  In addition to a certificate of his achievement, 1 year free membership of IFST and SCI, Magomed was awarded a prize of £200 and will become a Young Ambassador for SCI and the IFST.

The undergraduate section was won by Gemma Lamb (for her presentation on the use of mealworms as an alternative protein source in flatbread). Gemma was also awarded a prize of £200 in addition to a certificate of her achievement and 1 year free membership of IFST and SCI. 

After the competition, Gemma said 'I found the IFST young scientist competition to be an exciting experience and a great way to finish off my final year at the University of Huddersfield, studying Food, Nutrition and Health. Being able to share my project Enriching bread with mealworms as a sustainable and alternative sources of protein which I have been working on for several months, with a range of experienced judges was a fantastic opportunity and a real honour.  It was an enjoyable evening and lovely to meet new people who had shared interests within the food world, along with getting to watch and hear about what other students of different universities have been working on.

'As part of winning the competition I have also been given the opportunity to become a student ambassador, and I look forward to getting involved with future events within these organisations'

Dr Helen Martin, Gemma's project supervisor said 'I am immensely proud of Gemma. Her presentation was the culmination of four months of product development plus organising her own sensory evaluations and mastering the equipment needed for texture analysis and colorimetry. A well-deserved win.'

The judges were particularly impressed by the quality of the undergraduate presentations in this year's competition (and their ability to handle questions from the judges and the audience).  Sarah Bulfield (Liverpool John Moores University) was presented with a bottle of champagne for winning best undergraduate presentation as voted by the audience (for her presentation on Understanding consumers' expectations of low fat dairy products and the role fat plays in the perceived sensory characteristics of bovine milk)

All other finalists received a prize of £25 for presenting.

Summary of Winners and Finalists:




Presentation Title

Undergraduate* Winner

Gemma Lamb

University of Huddersfield

Product Development: Mealworm Enriched Bread - A sustainable and alternative source of protein; which is acceptable in terms of its sensory properties

Undergraduate Finalist

Katie Barker

University of Huddersfield

A product development; edible seaweed within pasta; a nutritional, texture and colour evaluation. Along with speculation of consumer acceptance

Undergraduate Finalist

Tanja Harrison

Liverpool John Moores University

Krill Oil as a sustainable source of omega-3 PUFA for dyslipidaemia

Undergraduate Finalist

Sarah Johnson

University of Teesside

Maximizing the amount of Vitamin C, a chemical essential for human life, produced by Cochlearia Officinalis, by increasing abiotic stress in order to alter the quantity of ROS generated

Judges Prize* (Undergraduate)

Sarah Bullfield

Liverpool John Moores University

Understanding consumers’ expectations of low fat dairy products and the role fat plays in the perceived sensory characteristics of bovine milk

Postgraduate* Winner

Magomed Muradov

Liverpool John Moores University

Real-Time Monitoring of Meat Drying Process using Microwave Spectroscopy

Postgraduate Finalist

Yu Lam NG

Manchester Metropolitan University

The delivery system of phytosterols with the use of two steps emulsion in blood cholesterol control

Postgraduate Finalist

Elisa J Vargas Garcia

University of Leeds

Influencing consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages in childhood: feasible? How?

Postgraduate Finalist

Qiqian Zhou

Manchester Metropolitan University

Further Developed Omega-3 Nano-emulsion Delivery System: Increase digestion stability and improve sensory properties

*Eligible for one-year free SCI membership and invited to join the Food Group Committee

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