International Union of Food Science and Technology

International Union of Food Science and Technology
Abbreviation IUFoST
Formation 1962
Headquarters Toronto, Ontario,
Region served
Official language
English, French
Rickey Yada,  Canada
Parent organization
International Council for Science (ICSU)
Website IUFoST Official website

The International Union of Food Science and Technology (IUFoST) (pronounced EYE-you-fost) is the global scientific organization and voice for food science and technology representing more than 200,000 food scientists and technologists from over 70 countries. It is a voluntary, non-profit association of national food science organizations. IUFoST is a full scientific member of the established in 1962, devoted to the advancement of,[1] one of only 31 scientific unions worldwide and the only global representative of food science and technology to notable organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO), Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), CODEX Alimentarius and International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI).

IUFoST's Mission and Principles

IUFoST's vision is to Strengthen Global Food Science and Technology for Humanity.

IUFoST's mission is to promote international co-operation and information exchange, to provide education and training to food scientists and technologists around the world and to promote professionalism and profession organization among food scientists and technologists.


The feasibility of establishing an international organization of food scientists and technologists dedicated to the nutritional needs of the people of the world was informally explored during the First International Congress of Food Science and Technology (1962) held in London. The President of the Congress was Lord Rank who crystallised informal discussions that had already been taking place among a number of food scientists from around the world when he stated in his presidential message: "If the potentialities of ... food science and technology are to ... culminate and nutritionally adequate, then there must be international collaboration." From the Congress emerged the International Committee of Food Science and Technology.

The work of this Committee culminated in the formal inauguration of the International Union of Food Science and Technology during the Third International Congress of Food Science and Technology convened in 1970 in Washington, DC, USA. The 1970 meeting in Washington, DC, USA was referred to as "SOS/70" with SOS referring to Science and Survival.

NATO's Involvement in the Conception of IUFoST

In 1960, several British scientific societies and the UK Government organised a conference in London in recognition of the Centenary of the 1860 Food and Drugs Act (UK). It was also the 150th anniversary of Appert's publication on the preservation of foods in sealed containers.

In the week prior to the Food and Drugs conference, Professor John Hawthorn convened a symposium on Recent Advances in Food Science at the Glasgow Royal College of Science and Technology, which later metamorphosed into Strathclyde University. [The proceedings, edited by Professor Hawthorn and a colleague J. Muil Leitch, were published in 1962 by Butterworths]. The Glasgow symposium, to which food scientists from many nations were invited, was financed by a substantial grant from the Office of the Science Adviser to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, NATO. During the 1950s and 1960s NATO evinced a significant interest in food technology. The food and nutrition research laboratory in Toronto, of which I was director, carried out an extensive study for NATO on the bulk storage of food grains examining alternative methods conducive to stockpiling at dispersed sites.

One evening following dinner during the Glasgow symposium, Professors Hawthorn and EC Bate-Smith invited a group to meet to discuss the concept of an international food science society. The discussion was splendidly stimulated by Professor Hawthorn's supply of malt whiskey from a Hebridean distillery. The group included Emil Mark and George Stewart from Davis, California, a fellow Canadian Bill Geddes, Dean of Agricultural Biochemistry at the University of Minnesota, Professor H D Kay from the dairy research institute at Reading, Tim Anson, an American employed with the Lever Organisation. Sadly I am the last survivor of that Glasgow group.

The notion of international scientific societies was not unique. ICSU, its predecessor and the supporting family of national academies and scientific unions had existed since 1919. The Glasgow group was of the opinion, however, that the time was ripe to create an international food science society, since several national food science and technology institutes were in existence. Our British hosts undertook to pursue the idea and the result was the food science congress convened in London in 1962, the first of the series of which China will be the host to the 14th.

The subsequent history of IUFoST is amply recorded in the archives, but perhaps not everyone is aware of NATO's early intervention.

By Joseph H. Hulse, Past President, IUFoST

The Budapest Declaration

In response to a shift in research focus among food scientists and technologists towards combating chronic hunger problems in the less developed world, IUFoST released its ‘Budapest Declaration’ during its 7th General Assembly in Budapest, Hungary, 1995. Referencing the Joint FAO/WHO International Conference on Nutrition (Rome, 1992) and its World Declaration on Nutrition, IUFoST declared its determination to minimize hunger and to reduce all forms of malnutrition throughout the world. To do this, IUFoST declared its commitment to work with all other organisations to ensure sustained nutritional well-being for all people in a peaceful, just and environmentally safe world. The declaration further recognised the central role of food science and technology in ensuring the year-round availability of the quantity and variety of safe and wholesome foods necessary to meet the nutritional needs of the world's growing population. This declaration would guide IUFoST’s working policy for the next fifteen years.

The Cape Town Declaration

During 2010’s 13th General Assembly of IUFoST in Cape Town, South Africa, the IUFoST General Assembly adopted the "Cape Town Declaration" setting out its commitments to food safety, food security and food science education. It recognized the previous work that had been conducted since the Budapest Declaration while outlining a policy for IUFoST future work with the global food science and technology industry. (


Membership in the International Union of Food Science and Technology is open to all nations on the basis of one representative body from each nation or defined territory. IUFoST represents more than 200,000 food scientists and technologists worldwide through its Adhering Bodies. This also includes regional groups in Western Africa (WAAFoST) West African Association of Food Science and Technology, Europe (EFFoST) [2] European Federation of Food Science and Technology, Asia (FIFSTA) The Federation of the Institutes of Food Science and Technology in ASEAN and Latin America/Caribbean (ALACCTA) Latin American and the Caribbean Association of Food Science and Technology.

Governance Structure

The General Assembly develops and controls IUFoST policies and actions. The Governing Council sets the objectives for the Term of Office and The Board implements strategies to achieve the objectives. The Scientific Council maintains the scientific standard and integrity of IUFoST activities. IUFoST formed the International Academy of Food Science and Technology (IAFoST), to recognise individuals with outstanding leadership in food science and technology. IAFoST is a learned society composed of elected members - Fellows - from all parts of the world. IUFoST's Regional Groupings, EFFoST (Europe), ALACCTA (Latin America), WAAFoST (West Africa) and FIFSTA (South East Asia) are an integral part of the organization. Standing Committees and Disciplinary Groupings comply with the IUFoST Constitution and they are guided by the General Assembly.

Programmes and Achievements: IUFoST Missions consist of

• Delivering educational programmes, student scholarships and opportunities for young scientists, including distance learning, which is currently being developed for Sub-Saharan Africa. IUFoST pilot projects are underway in Sub-Saharan Africa providing distance learning modules to food industry middle managers without formal qualifications. These modules are conducted with local advisors/mentors and prepared by international experts. Courses have been created from basic to advanced learning levels in themes like Food Safety, Quality Assurance including HACCP, Shelf Life of Foods, Packaging, Food Laws and Regulations, Food Hygiene, Food Freezing, Practical Human Nutrition, Minimal Processing. IUFoST is also a leader and advises in international programming for food science and technology courses worldwide workshops and training in all aspects of food science and technology worldwide.

Providing scientific expertise by providing experts for short courses and workshops, and organizing conferences and symposia, in partnership with our Adhering Bodies and regional groupings, on important current issues such as food safety, security, traceability, and food defense by working directly with organizations on a consultant basis. For example, IUFoST has been working with the relevant Chinese Ministries, by invitation and under the auspices of the Ministry of Health, China to present the latest authoritative international perspectives on food safety issues in a series of high level meetings in Beijing. IUFoST has also been assisting member countries in advising their national governments in areas of food legislation when requested.

Providing global leadership through IUFoST’s biennial World Food Congresses, guidelines for professional conduct in the food science industry, provision of core curricula and accreditation expertise and scientific information bulletins on currently important topics such as obesity, nanotechnology, biotechnology. These bulletins are used by governments, industry and academia worldwide.

As the global food science and technology organization IUFoST has special consultative status with FAO. Similarly IUFoST works closely with related departments in the World Health Organisation, United National International Development Organisation (UNIDO), and many other international organisations in the course of 'strengthening food science and technology for humanity'

• Stimulating exchange of knowledge in the international food science and technology community through the electronic magazine “The World of Food Science,” the annual review of the state of global food science and technology, textbooks, world congress review papers and the Hunger Handbook applying food science and technology to improve nutrition and promote national development. IUFoST publishes the core food science and technology textbook for food science and technology, "Food Science and Technology", published by Wiley-Blackwell.

IUFoST's Key Activities

The Biennial World Food Congress

IUFoST is holding its 16th World Congress in Iguassu Falls, Brazil from August 5–9, 2012. The theme for this congress is "Addressing Global Food Security and Wellness through Food Science and Technology" -

Involvement in regional symposia (2011-2012)

IUFOST is active in regional symposia across the globe. In 2012 alone IUFoST representatives will attend workshops in East Africa, the FIFSTA regional meetings in Manila, Philippines, Food Safety workshops and meetings in Beijing, China, Warsaw, Poland and Dublin, Ireland.

IUFoST Scientific Information Bulletins (SIBs)

SIBs addresses cutting edge explain the scientific principles involved in a topic, underpinned by the scientific expertise of the authors of each SIB and including provision of key and scientifically reliable online and other sources of additional information. Each SIB is prepared by world authorities selected by the IUFoST Scientific Council. Each is reviewed and approved by the IUFoST Scientific Council.

Disciplinary Groups

International specialist bodies form Disciplinary Groups under the IUFoST umbrella. These currently include the International Society of Food Engineers (ISFE), the International Society for Nutraceuticals and Functional Foods (ISNFF), the International Symposium on the Properties of Water (ISOPOW), the International Food Research Colloboration (IFRC) and the International Society of Food Applications of Nanoscale Sciences (ISFANS).

IUFoST Working Groups/Task Forces/Committees

Emergency Response Group

Food Safety Committee/Task Force

Food Safety Panel

Food Security Committee

Food Security Task Force

Distance Education Task Force

Education Committee

Academy Fellows Forum

Emerging Issues Forum

Food, Health and Wellness Committee

Food, Health and Wellness Forum

Aflatoxin Working Group


IUFoST World Congresses

Nr. Year City Country
18. 2016 Dublin  Ireland
17. 2014 Montreal[3]  Canada
16. 2012 Foz do Iguassu[4]  Brazil
15. 2010 Cape Town  South Africa
14. 2008 Shanghai  China
13. 2006 Nantes  France
12. 2003 Chicago, Illinois  United States
11. 2001 Seoul  South Korea
10. 1999 Sydney  Australia
9. 1995 Budapest  Hungary
8. 1991 Toronto  Canada
7. 1987 Singapore  Singapore
6. 1983 Dublin  Ireland
5. 1978 Kyoto  Japan
4. 1974 Madrid  Spain
3. 1970 Washington, DC  United States
2. 1966 Warsaw  Poland
1. 1962 London  United Kingdom


The IUFoST secretariat is headquartered in a suburb of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.[5]


  1. (ICSU) International Council for Science
  2. European Federation of Food Science and Technology (EFFoST)
  3. "IUFoST's Canada 2014 world congress website". Retrieved 5 September 2012.
  4. "IUFoST's Brazil world congress website". Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  5. "IUFoST's contact information". Retrieved 5 September 2012.
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