• Queen's University Belfast

Tackling the Global Food Crisis: Sustainable Agrifood Systems

This course looks at food insecurity and the challenges to be overcome in order to maintain healthy and sustainable food supplies.

8,529 enrolled on this course

  • Duration

    4 weeks
  • Weekly study

    2 hours

This is the second course in a two-part series by Queen’s University Belfast looking at issues concerning the maintenance and enhancement of global food supplies, whilst improving human wellbeing in the developed and developing world.

This course will focus on threats to global food security and the challenges that need to be overcome, in order to maintain healthy and sustainable food supplies.

The course will begin by looking at global food insecurity and the potential consequences for human health. Examining links between food insecurity and the rising tide of metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases around the globe, it will demonstrate how the issue is particularly relevant in the developed world.

It will continue on to examine threats to global food security posed by parasites, which undermine the health of animals and plants, damaging food production systems globally. Having considered threats to global food security the course will look at approaches to sustaining healthy agri-food systems such as the benefits of applied genetics for fisheries management and aquaculture.

The course will conclude by considering societal concerns around animal welfare, as pressure builds to increase production intensity whilst reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Using cutting edge research undertaken by the Institute of Global Food Security (IGFS) the course will illustrate how aspects of the global food crisis might be addressed, in order to sustain and manage healthy food systems into the future.

The course is led by Professor Chris Elliott, who wrote the UK government review on the recent horsemeat scandal. To find out more, read Chris’s post for our blog: “The many faces of the global food crisis.”

Please note that the first course in this series, Tackling the Global Food Crisis: Supply Chain Integrity is NOT a pre-requisite for taking this course.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 14 seconds Hello, and welcome to Belfast. My name is Professor Chris Elliott, and I’m the director of the Institute for Global Food Security. I’ve published extensively on the detection and control of agriculture, food, and environmentally related contaminants across the entire global feed food supply chain. The institute has over 100 full-time scientists working alongside each other, and houses a suite of state of the art laboratories, and conducts cutting edge research into the various topics ranging from soil and plant science right through to food safety and human nutrition. Facilities include the advanced asset laboratories, which contain mass spectrometers, biocenter technologies, and all of the tools needed for fuel systems biology.

Skip to 1 minute and 1 second With increasing population and climate change threatening existing food supplies, major challenges must overcome to ensure delivery of safe nutritious food. The cutting edge research in our institute aim to provide solutions for this. This course aims to provide advanced knowledge of food safety and food security across different levels of the food supply chain with a focus on the objective to enhance global food security for a sustainable future. Enhancing animal welfare health leading to improved human health is key. Monitoring and protecting the impact of climate change will be explored throughout the course.

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

Who is the course for?

This course is open to all but also includes research techniques and methodologies which may require a prior grounding in the biological sciences in order to fully engage. There are no specific requirements, however some content may be presented using third party applications and services such as Storify, Storee, and Flickr.

Who will you learn with?

I am Professor of Food Safety at Queen's University, Belfast and Director of the Institute for Global Food Security

Who developed the course?

Queen's University Belfast

Queen’s University Belfast is a member of the Russell Group of 24 leading UK research-intensive universities.

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