Monthly Archives: March 2021

Thursday 1 July: Fermented foods – what’s brewing?

Professor Steve Flint
Professor of Food Safety and Microbiology, School of Food and Advanced Technology, Massey University.

Date: 6.00pm Thursday 1 July 2021

Venue: Lecture Theatre 1, EIT Taradale

Admission: Gold coin donation

Steve will start by discussing the different microbes that are used to ferment food – yeasts, moulds and bacteria. He’ll explain the differences in fermentation results with wild microbes and those that are commercially available.

Fermentation has a long history in the food industry as a method to preserve natural sources of food. Foods such as cheeses, yoghurts, wines and beers are examples of traditional foods that are widely consumed today. However, there are changes towards a new range of fermented foods, driven by the potential effects on our health and the search for novel sensory experiences.

The latest Institute of Food Technology journal identifies some of the most recent trends in fermented foods in the USA. For example, sales of yoghurt fell by 6% in 2019, while sales of skyr Icelandic-style yoghurt jumped 23%. High protein fermented plant-based foods, such as tempeh and seitan, are attracting interest from consumers. Products such as Gochujang, a fermented Korean red pepper paste, is becoming a trendy condiment in the US. Fermented flavours such as miso, kohi and yuzu kosho are of growing interest. In the US, sales of kombucha grew 43% in 2018 and we are seeing a similar trend in NZ, with kombucha filling supermarket shelves. We appear to be entering a new era of consumer interest in fermented foods, providing new opportunities for the food industry.

Steve Flint teaches food safety and microbiology at Massey University in Palmerston North. He has a background in the dairy industry, having worked for the Fonterra Research Centre for 20 years before joining Massey University in 2008. Steve has a team of 10 research students working on various aspects of food microbiology.

Matariki – Stories of the Stars

Using all the facilities of the Holt Planetarium, join Planetarium Director Gary Sparks on an exploration of the science, the cultural significance and the international celebration that is Matariki.

Session times: Friday 02 July at 7pm, Saturday 03 July at 7pm and Sunday 04 July at 2pm.

Venue: Hawke’s Bay Holt Planetarium, Chambers Street (on the grounds of Napier Boys High School).

Admission: $20 per person, payable on the night. Cash only, no EFTPOS facilities.

Advanced booking is required. To book, contact the Planetarium 06 834 4345 or gary@holtplanetarium.org.nz

Monday 21 June: Regenerative Agriculture’s Importance for New Zealand

Associate Professor Edgar Burns

Date: Monday 21 June 2021 at 6.00pm

Venue: EIT Lecture Theatre 1, 501 Gloucester Street, Taradale

Regenerative agriculture is a set of farming principles and practices that enrich soils and improve water quality and management. It is a farmer-led movement that reduces tilling, fertilizer and spray use, and increases ground cover. Regen ag shifts from maximizing production to maximizing profit, animal and farmer wellbeing. Environmentally, it approaches farming as a biological system. The term ‘regenerative’ acknowledges that simply being ‘sustainable’ at present levels of agricultural damage is no longer sufficient.

Dr Edgar Burns will talk about how regenerative agriculture could benefit New Zealand. He outlines the main features of ‘regen ag’ and gives answers to several questions: 1) How does this farmer-led movement support rural viability? 2) How does it mesh with government water and environment policies? 3) How does the media buzz compare with what critics say?
Social science research frames conventional science answers in new ways that include wellbeing and motivation.

Edgar Burns is an Associate Professor at Waikato University and currently Hawke’s Bay Regional Council Chair of Integrated Catchments. He is also a member of the MPI (Ministry of Primary Industries) TAG (Technical Advisory Group) for regenerative agriculture.