2018 European Symposium
April 25 – April 27 | Brewery Conference Centre, Stockholm, Sweden
IAFP’s European Symposium on Food Safety took place 25–27 April 2018 in Stockholm, Sweden, at the Brewery Conference Centre Stockholm with more than 370 delegates participating. The meeting was held in collaboration with the technical cooperation of the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations.
The Opening Session began with a welcome to delegates from Jeanne-Marie Membre, INRA, France, and Chair of the Organizing Committee. IAFP Executive Director David Tharp spoke about IAFP and its benefits. IAFP President Mickey Parish, U.S. Food and Drug Administration in College Park, Maryland, officially opened the symposium and recognized two deserving recipients of the 2018 European Student Travel Scholarship, sponsored by the IAFP Foundation.
Katrien Begyn is a Ph.D. candidate at Ghent University in Belgium in the Research Unit of Food Technology, Safety and Health, located at the Faculty of Bioscience Engineering. Katrien’s research focuses on the impact of Bacillus cereus endospore evolution on food safety, with an emphasis on UV and wet heat stress. This research project is a cooperation between three Belgian institutes with extended knowledge of B. cereus: FMFP-UGent; the Centre for Food and Microbial Technology, Department M1S, member of Leuven Food Science and Nutrition Centre (LFoRCEe, KU Leuven); and Flanders Research Institute for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Technology and Food Science, Food Safety Unit (ILVO).
The second recipient, Giannis Koukkidis, is a Ph.D. researcher in the Department of Infection Immunity and Inflammation at the University of Leicester in the United Kingdom. Throughout his graduate studies, Giannis’ focus has been on examining the interactions of salad leaf tissues with enteropathogens, with results leading to publication in a leading food microbiology journal and coverage by major news agencies worldwide. Giannis also received a 2017 Student Travel Scholarship to attend IAFP 2017 in Tampa, Florida.
Opening Session speakers included Karin Tegmark Wisell, The Public Health Agency of Sweden, and Ivar Vagshom, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. Mickey Parish concluded the Opening Session with his presentation, “Science and Food Safety Policy at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.”
Twenty-one symposia, three roundtables, and eight technical sessions, along with the Closing Plenary Session, comprised the three-day program. More than 115 poster presentations were also given throughout the meeting.
Friday’s Closing Session speakers included Arja Helena Kautto, National Food Safety Agency; My Sahlman, The Federation of Swedish Farmers; and Beatrix Alsanius, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. IAFP President-Elect Tim Jackson, Driscoll’s, Watsonville, California, presented, “Food Safety Management in a Changing World.” The session concluded with the Student Awards Presentation by Mickey Parish, followed by closing remarks. Several students took part in the Student Competition, with Aurelien Maillet, Oniris in Nantes, France, and Lena Fritsch, Anses in Maisons-Alfort, France, receiving honors for their poster and technical presentations (respectively) during the conference.
This year’s symposium was supported in part by our exhibitors and sponsors through their financial contributions. Nineteen companies shared their food safety equipment, products, and services with attendees through displays in the Exhibit Hall. IAFP acknowledges each of these companies for their support provided to the symposium.
Other groups to be recognized include the Organizing Committee, chaired by Jeanne-Marie Membre, and the Local Organizing Committee, chaired by Rikard Hellqvist, Bertström & Hellqvist AB. IAFP extends its thanks and appreciation to these committee members, as well as to the symposium organizers, convenors, and presenters, all of whom provided much time and hard work into planning and organizing the European Symposium in Stockholm. The conference proved to be highly successful, with a record attendance, for those attending from across Europe and around the world.
Next year, IAFP’s European Symposium on Food Safety will take place 24–26 April 2019 in Nantes, France. More details on this event, including the call for symposia and the call for abstracts, will be posted on the IAFP Web site in September.