Annual Symposium 2021 – Nurturing the next generation

Annual Symposium 2021
Digital, Online
9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Click to Register

Background & Purpose

The 2021 ILSI Europe Annual Symposium (IEAS) was a premiere gathering of experts from around the world that met to shed light on the current and future challenges on nutrition, food safety and sustainability. It was a key opportunity for stakeholders to contribute to give answer to these questions, discussing and debating on the themes in the spotlight.

Thanks to the multiple parallel session, this year’s program triggers the interest of multisector scientific minds. A most promising scientific program is being finalised with exciting talks and inspiring speakers.

Moreover, in ILSI Europe we envisage to be a talent accelerator and publicly recognise the value that Early Career Scientists bring to the scientific community. Therefore, the Early Career Scientists participating in our program will co-chair some of our session! Please contact Dr Simeon Bourdoux should you wish to be part of our Early Career Scientist Program!

Draft 2021 Agenda

9.00 -  Welcome Note and Key note lecture | Room Roberfroid

Nutritional Psychiatry: diet and mental health across the life course 
Professor Jacka is an ISI Highly-Cited Researcher (2020), putting her in the top 0.1% of publishing scientists worldwide.  The Food & Mood Centre she leads examines how individuals’ diets interact with the risk for mental health problems.  This research is being carried out with the ultimate goal of developing new, evidence-based prevention and treatment strategies for mental disorders. She has recently published a book for the general public called ‘Brain Changer’ through Pan Macmillan Australia and Yellow Kite in the UK and EU. Her children’s book – There’s a Zoo in my Poo – was published in July 2020. In 2021 she was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for her services to Nutritional Psychiatry.

  • Welcome by ILSI Europe President and  Executive Director
    Prof. Louise Dye, ILSI Europe President (Leeds University, UK)
    Mr Ignacio Garamendi, ILSI Europe Executive Director
  • KEY NOTE: Nutritional Psychiatry: diet and mental health across the life course –  Prof. Dr Felice Jacka (Food & Mood Centre, Deakin University, AU)

9.50 - Next generation of risk assessment of chemicals | Room Roberfroid
Efforts have been underway for many decades to develop alternatives to animal tests for chemical safety and risk assessment. However, it is only in the last decade and a half that this has become a realistic prospect. A number of major research programmes have been focused specifically on this objective and the emphasis is moving method development to implementation, and what this would involve. This session will address current initiatives within the EU and how the vision can be made a reality in the area of food safety.

  • Chair: Prof. Alan Boobis (Imperical College London, UK)
  • Co- Chair: Dr Ricardo M. Abreu de Assunção (CESAM/University of Aveiro, PT)
  • Confirmed Speakers:
    Prof. Dr Bob van de Water (Leiden University, NL)
    Prof. Mathieu Vinken (Vrije University Brussels, BE)
    Dr Andrea Richarz (European Chemicals Agency, FI)

9.50 - Transforming Food Systems: practical implementations | Room Kroes
It is easy and necessary to say food systems need to be transformed, but hard to say "transformed to what?", "how to do it?" and "what tangible outcomes so far?". This session aims to provide what are the tangible outcomes achieved to date

  • Chair: Dr Ing Cyril Chaudemanche (General Mills, FR)
  • Co-chair: Saher Hasnain (University of Oxford, UK)
  • Speakers:
    Dr John Ingram (University of Oxford, UK)
    Dr Line Gordon (Stockholm University, SE)
    Dr Paule Moustier (CIRAD, FR)

9.50 - Early Career Scientists, adapt and implement the Open Science Concept*| Room Ernster
With the current requirements from EU and international funders, and in response to the desire of the public for science to become more accessible, open science will become the norm. But what is open science, how can one practice it, why it might be difficult to start doing open science and how to overcome these initial hurdles – these and more questions we will answer together with 15 Early Career Scientists in this very interactive 2 hour-workshop. This workshop is intended for maximum 15 early career researchers who: a) know nothing about open science, b) know a little and want to learn more, c) know about open science, but are unsure of its benefits and would like to explore this further. Places are limited so sign up quickly.

  • Animator: Ms Nevena Hristozova (ILSI Europe, BE)
  • Confirmed Speakers:
    Dr Edward Sliwinski (EFFOST, NL)
    Ms Alba Gil (Eurofir, BE)
    Mr Luis Mayor López (ISEKI Food, AT)
    Dr Katherine Flynn (ISEKI Food, AT)
    Dr Luminita Ciolacu (ISEKI Food, AT)

11.00 - Mix & Match Networking | Room Roberfroid
Just as you would at an in-person conference, meet fellow participants at the event with similar interests, or randomly connect and enlarge your network. Enjoy!

11.30 - Consumers and informed choice in the digital age | Room Roberfroid
In the digital age, it's hard to find order in the chaos of overwhelming online and media content. Consumers spend large amounts of time reading articles and Tweets, trying to understand and assess the underlying narratives and opinions to make informed choices regarding nutrition, food safety and sustainability. How can we inform the civil society about for example, food safety? Can we monitor internet and media content to detect fake news or use it to detect food fraud? These questions and more will be discussed in this session.

  • Chair: Prof. Lynn Frewer (Newcastle University, UK)
  • Speakers:
    Mr Antony Cousins (Factmata, UK)
    Dr Hanna Leena Alakomi (VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, FI)
    Dr Hans Marvin (Wageningen University, NL)
    Dr Michele Suman (Barilla, IT)

12.00 - Onward and upward as an early career scientist | Room Kroes
Discover during this roundtable what skills industry, a public and academic institution are looking for in a scientist, and prepare your next career move. Use this opportunity to ask all type of questions and discover these organizations.

  • Chair: Dr Elaine Vaughan (Sensus, NL)
  • Panelists:
    Dr Sandra Coecke (EC - Joint Research Centre, IT)
    Prof. Mathieu Vinken (Vrije University Brussels, BE)
    Dr Renaud Mestdagh (Cargill, BE)
    Prof. Nynke Kramer (Utrecht University, NL)

13.05 - Lunch Break

14.30 - Personalised Nutrition: from data collection to implementation | Room Roberfroid
Consumers want to have healthier, more sustainable diets, and personalized dietary advice has been shown to be more effective than generic public health advice in achieving and sustaining behavioral change. Online and app-based nutrition and health services are numerous but fragmented and rarely science-based. This session will discuss how we can build scientific evidence to support personalized nutrition, going from data collection to the implementation of the scientific findings.

  • Chair: Dr David Vauzour (University of East Anglia, UK)
  • Co-Chair: Dr Pedro Mena (University of Parma, IT)
  • Speakers:
    Dr Siân Astley (Quisper Association, EuroFIR, BE)
    Prof. José Ordovás (Tufts University, US)
    Dr Sarah Berry (King's College London, UK)

14.30 - Nutrition for optimal sports performance - are there lessons for healthy ageing? | Room Kroes
Much of sports nutrition is targeted at musculoskeletal function, performance and recovery, cognitive function, and supporting immunity. Ageing is linked with musculoskeletal, cognitive and immune decline. What lessons can sports nutrition research provide for healthy ageing and for care of the elderly? The content provided by 3 excellent researchers in sports nutrition will be analysed by a panel specialized in geriatrics care and development on nutrition specialized for elderly.

  • Chair: Prof. Philip Calder
  • Speakers:
    Prof. Stuart Phillips (McMaster University, CA)
    Prof. Samuele Marcora (University of Bologna, IT)
    Prof. David Nieman (Appalachian State University, US)
  • Panelists:
    Prof. Dr Jürgen M. Bauer (Heidelberg University, DE)
    Dr Rebecca Stratton (Danone Nutricia, UK)

15.45 - Mix & Match Networking | Room Roberfroid
Just as you would at an in-person conference, meet fellow participants at the event with similar interests, or randomly connect and enlarge your network. Enjoy!

16.10 - Closing & Key Note | Room Roberfroid
As human species, we’re not even especially good at figuring out what to fear. The things that terrify us often shouldn’t. And the things we face with a relatively blasé attitude should genuinely give us significant pause. So what’s up with that? Join psychologist Bill Hallman, a professor at Rutgers University who studies risk perception, as we unpack the factors that explain this uniquely human inability to distinguish between safe and scary.

  • KEY NOTE: Prof. William Hallman (Rutgers University, US)
  • Chair: Dr Janice Rueda (ADM, US)
  • Closing note by ILSI Europe Chair: Dr Douwina Bosscher (Cargill, BE)

In case you are interested in session taking place in parallel, please note that all session will be recorded and made available to all registrants shortly after the event.

You can download the print friendly programme HERE

* Kindly note that only Early Career Scientists can participate, and that places are limited. Thank you for the understanding.


Register now HERE!


For more information about our activities, please contact Erin Vera, Communications Manager at

Symposium Programme
Dr Isabelle Guelinckx, Scientific Program Director

Registration and Payment
Mr Hugo Costa, Event and Office Assistant
+32 (0)2 771 00 14 –