The Island of Ireland Meets on Meat

Date published: 07 March 2019

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What is the value of meat in the diet? Should we be eating less meat? How do we make the most of the meat we produce? Meat has been much in the news recently and its role in our diets and our culture is the subject of ongoing discussion.

Some of the speakers at the All-Ireland Meat Science Conference held at AFBI last week

These issues informed much of the debate at a recent “All-Ireland Meat Science Conference”, hosted by the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI) and organised by Dr Linda Farmer, Head of AFBI’s Food Research Branch.

The island of Ireland is a centre of expertise for meat science and research. Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland are important suppliers of meat to the populous areas of GB and further afield, and the meat industry is a huge part of both agricultural economies. As such the conference highlighted the breadth of meat science expertise on the island of Ireland and considered key opportunities to advance the meat industry.

Key discussion areas included “Nutritional qualities of meat”, “Meat for consumers and the world”,  “New technologies for processing and packaging”, “Measuring quality and authenticity”,  “Focus on Lamb” and “Microbial and chemical safety of meat”.

Linda Farmer, organiser (AFBI) with David Farrell (AFBI), Aidan Moloney (Teagasc), and Nigel Scollan (QUB) at the All-Ireland Meat Science Conference.
Linda Farmer, organiser (AFBI) with David Farrell (AFBI), Aidan Moloney (Teagasc), and Nigel Scollan (QUB) at the All-Ireland Meat Science Conference.
Scientists from AFBI, Teagasc, University College Dublin, Queen’s University Belfast, University of Ulster, College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise and University College Cork gave presentations on their work and each session was followed by questions and comment from industry and scientific delegates. Two informal workshops were held to determine views on the priorities of the meat industry and how scientists can contribute to trade challenges.

The conference attracted over 80 delegates, spanning representatives across the meat industry and scientific organisations, and from Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and Great Britain. Given the success of the conference, plans are being taken forward to make the event a regular in the meat industry calendar.

View the presentations from the event

View images from the event

Notes to editors: 

AFBI carries out high quality technology research and development, statutory, analytical, and diagnostic testing functions for DAERA and other Government departments, public bodies and commercial companies.

AFBI's Vision “Advancing the Local and Global Agri-Food Sectors Through Scientific Excellence”.

All media enquiries to AFBI Press Office

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