As part of a re-structuring process in the Teagasc Food Research Programme, five people have been newly appointed as Heads of their respective departments.

The Food Research programme, which is headed up by Dr Mark Fenelon, is located across two campuses at Ashtown in Dublin and Moorepark in Co. Cork.

As part of the re-structuring, a new Food Quality and Sensory Science Department has been introduced, increasing the number of departments from four to five, according to the Dr Fenelon.

“Restructuring, while facilitating the introduction of new scientific areas, also extends the existing research, and should allow Teagasc to provide better support for the growing number of external stakeholders,” he said.

The following people have just been appointed to manage these food research Departments:
  • Ms Ciara McDonagh – Head of Food Industry Development Department;
  • Dr Geraldine Duffy – Head of Food Safety Department;
  • Dr John Tobin – Head of Food Chemistry and Technology Department;
  • Dr Eimear Gallagher – Head of Food Quality and Sensory Science Department;
  • Dr Paul Cotter – Head of Food Biosciences Department.

Director of Research at Teagasc, Dr Frank O Mara, congratulated the five Teagasc researchers on being appointed Head of their respective departments, as he outlined his hopes for the programme in the future.

“Teagasc has recently completed a Technology Foresight exercise focused on identification of key technologies capable of driving competitiveness and sustainable growth within the Irish agri-food sector.

“This strategy coupled with increased input from industry and other state agencies, including funding agencies, provides the template from which Teagasc will continue to build its food programme and increase its impact,” he said.

Meanwhile, Dr Mark Fenelon added that core areas of research are being strengthened with the inclusion of new themes within the programme.

The inclusion of these new themes within the programme align Teagasc food research priorities with the Food Wise 2025 strategy for the Irish Agri-Food industry, he said.

“These include life-stage nutrition and healthy eating, application of sensory science and flavour chemistry, emerging technologies and food fermentation.”