Home » Events » Healthy and sustainable diets: The role of animal-derived foods

Healthy and sustainable diets: The role of animal-derived foods

5, Dec 2023 10:00am–05:00pm


Animal-derived foods (milk and dairy, meat, fish and eggs) offer primary sources of essential nutrients some of which are not readily available in plant-based foods. These foods play an important role across every stage of life, including childhood, adolescence, pregnancy and lactation, and older age. However, consumer concerns around their carbon footprint to produce animal-derived foods, animal welfare in intensive livestock production systems, and dietary patterns (such as vegetarianism and veganism) are primary drivers for the reduction of consumption in animal products; and increasingly their replacement with plant-based alternatives, particularly in developed countries. Affordability and availability challenges also favour a low intake of animal-derived foods in many developing countries.

This event will address issues around the role of, and the balance between, animal-derived foods and plant-based alternatives in human diets and provide evidence on how we can develop and promote healthy, sustainable, and accessible diets for different consumer demographics and dietary patterns.



The event is intended to broker links between science, agriculture, food, nutrition and health industries, with a target audience of academics, students and early-career researchers across all these fields; stakeholders across the food chain including farmers, agricultural consultants and managers, food manufacturers and product developers, nutrition and health consultants and professionals, marketing and retailers; policy-makers; and consumers, as well as the public who are seeking evidence-based information around health and sustainable diets.


Exhibition and sponsorship

For further information and prices, please email conferences@soci.org.


Call for Posters

Contributions are invited from early-stage researchers and PhD students working on the nutritional composition and the role of animal-derived foods (milk, dairy, meat, eggs, fish) and plant-based alternatives in human nutrition and health, as well as the environmental footprint and socio-economic implications of consuming animal-derived foods and plant-based alternatives. In addition, studies that investigate pathways to develop and promote healthy, sustainable and accessible diets for different consumer demographics and dietary patterns are highly encouraged and within the remit of this conference.

The objective for the competition is to identify posters which best explain the outcomes of the research, and also in the context of the potential application of the results by the industry and consumers. There will be voucher prizes of £100 for 1st place and £50 for 2nd place. An abstract of maximum 250 words (250 words does not include author names, affiliations, references or figure captions) indicating title, authors, institution included with the Poster, should be sent to conferences@soci.org by Monday 30 October 2023 with the subject line “Healthy and Sustainable diets event - poster submission” You can download an abstract template here.

The 1st place winner will be additionally awarded with the opportunity to publish their poster in JSFA as well as JSFA Reports.


Tuesday 5 December 2023





Registration and refreshments


Welcome and introduction; What is a healthy and sustainable diet? Alice Stanton, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland & Devenish Nutrition




Session 1: Human nutrition and health


10:45  Dietary transition from animal to plant-derived foods: are there risks to health? Prof Ian Givens, University of Reading

11:00  The contribution of red meat to nutrition and health in adults Kate Arthur, AHDB

11:15  The role of animal-sourced foods on child nutrition in developing countries Prof Adegbola Adesogan, University of Florida

11:30  The role of fish in a balanced and healthy diet Dr Matthew Sprague, University of Stirling

11:45  Panel discussion


12:05  Refreshment break





Session 2: Environmental and socio-economic sustainability


12:30  Merging the environmental and nutritional sciences: viewing agri-food environmental footprints through novel lenses Dr Graham McAuliffe, Rothamsted Research

12:45  Sustainability in livestock production systems: what are the options? Prof Michael Lee, Harper Adams University

13:00  Is cultured meat a threat or opportunity for UK farmers? David Rose, Royal Agricultural University

13:15  Panel discussion

13:35  Lunch, posters and exhibition





Session 3: Implementation, challenges and solutions


14:30  How can we achieve a healthy and sustainable diet? Ursula Arens, Nutrition writer and consultant

14:45  Supply-chain perspectives on healthy and sustainable diets Emer Lowery, Waitrose

15:00  Panel discussion


15:20  Networking reception

16:30  Close of conference

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