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Sustainable Nordic and Baltic Food – Technologies, Quality, and Health

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NOVA PhD course of 5 ECTS, organised by Research Scientist, PhD Tove Devold, Norwegian University of Life Sciences in collaboration with Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies.
Course dates and location: 28 Apr. - 1 May 2019 in Jelgava, Latvia.

Course Description
The purpose of the course is to gain in-depth knowledge of Nordic and Baltic agri-food research; challenges and opportunities and to contribute to sustainable and innovative production of both traditional, and new healthy foods from local raw materials, used in the Nordic and Baltic diets.

The course will give an overview of traditional food systems as well as new under-used and novel protein-rich resources relevant for the Nordic and Baltic countries. This will be highlighted through examples from current research projects by the different lecturers. Emphasis will be put on novel ways of food processing and emerging technologies with focus on quality, safety and sensory issues. The course will emphasise local foods and measures needed to make the whole food supply chain more sustainable. It will provide advanced knowledge of selected food value chains (milk, fish and meat, and plant foods) and give examples of how such products can be made more sustainable (by use of new technologies and adding value to by-products) without compromising their eating quality, safety, shelf-life and health benefits. The course will stimulate PhD students and young scientists to reflect about new research and new knowledge on food and health that is needed for more sustainable processing, and associated challenges for each food group (milk, fish, meat and plants) value chains.

Programme Outline

  • Sunday 28 April: Arrival and welcome lecture and reception
  • Monday 29 April: Introductory lectures on sustainable food production and processing, sustainability, value chains and presentations by PhD students, workshop
  • Tuesday 30 April: Lectures by invited experts (one or two) and about on-going research projects from the Nordic and Baltic countries , group work by students, journal club
  • Wednesday 1 May: presentations by PhD students, learning activities to be decided, evaluation of course, farewell

Pre-/Post-Campus Assignments

  • Pre-campus: preparing for a presentation of their own PhD project, reading relevant papers given by the teachers
  • Post-campus: preparing a short paper and engage in two web-meetings and discussions on a topic relevant for the course

Learning Outcomes
After successful completion of this course students should have gained

  • Knowledge:
    • Understanding of relevant food value chains and research challenges with regard to technology, sustainability, safety and human health
    • Understanding of innovative use of by-products
    • Understanding of the need of knowledge transfer of technologies between different food sectors
  • Skills:
    • Demonstrate generic skills (problem solving, written and oral communication and intercultural cooperation
    • Be able to reflect on their own role and area of research within complex food value chains
  • Competence
    • Demonstrate the ability of innovative use of current knowledge to solve complex problems
    • Demonstrate the ability to use methods learned during the course to produce innovative ideas within food science

Evaluation Elements
Students will earn their credits by 1) giving a presentation of their own PhD project, 2) engaging in discussions, workshops and other learning activities during the course, 3) preparing a short paper and engage in two web-meetings and discussions on a topic relevant for the course (post-course activity).

Pedagogical Approach
Lectures given by teachers and students, small workshops and debates, use of innovative teaching and learning strategies such as flipped teaching, case studies, journal clubs and games for learning in real-life during the course and in pre- and post-course web based activities.

Estimated Workload

  • 3 days, full day-course
  • 50 hours pre-course preparation (independent work: literature study, presentation of PhD project, presentation of paper suggested by the organisers)
  • 10 hours lectures
  • 20 seminars and various learning activities (during the course)
  • 70 hours post-course work (writing up essays, two post-course web meetings with presentations by students of their assignments)

Prerequisite Knowledge
The course is intended for PhD students with a master’s degree (or equivalent) in either food science, animal science, plant science or human nutrition.

Admission for NOVA courses is handled by the course organiser/ the NOVA member institution organising the course. Please see the links in the margin for more information.

Apply here


There is no course fee for any students. Other participants as teachers/researchers and participants from the industry can be charged a course fee.

Information on other costs is to be announced.

Published 12. December 2018 - 13:04 - Updated 11. November 2019 - 12:47