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Ensuring Food Security on the Island of Ireland

Three professors involved in the Food I and The Food Shield Project

Professor Aedín Cassidy, Queen’s with Prof Christ Elliot, Queen's, and Prof Fiona Doohan, UCD, from FOOD-I and the Food Shield project

The culmination of many years of collaboration in different areas of agri-food research, UCD and Queen’s brought together an all-island network to ensure food security and sustainability for the whole region.

In March 2022, Irish Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue TD, and Minister of Agriculture, Environment, and Rural Affairs of Northern Ireland, Edwin Poots, launched the (opens in a new window)All-Island Food Integrity Initiative (FOOD-I), led by Professor Eileen Gibney, UCD, and Professor Aedín Cassidy, Queen’s.

The new network consolidates food systems expertise on the island of Ireland, bringing together key academic, industry and government stakeholders. It also produced a first-of-its-kind (opens in a new window)report maps the agri-food research ecosystem for publicly funded research across the entire island of Ireland, awarded between 2015 and 2020.

To date, FOOD-I members have coordinated several projects – across the domains of Sustainable Food Production, Nutrition & Health, Food Safety & Integrity, and Supporting Change for a Healthy, Sustainable Food System – including (opens in a new window)Protein-I (enhancing the sustainability of protein production), Mycotox-I (Field to fork assessment and mitigation of mycotoxin exposure risk on the island of Ireland) and Food Shield (Resilience, growth and digitisation of Food and Feed Supply Systems).

Other important research collaborations include the work of Dr Kieran Meade, UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science, and Professor Ilias Kyriazakis, Queen’s, Institute for Global Food Security, with the Northern Ireland Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI), on the recurring problem bovine TB across the island. And the work of Dr Edel Kelly, Dr Magdalena Necpalova, Associate Professor Paul Murphy (UCD , UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science/UCD Institute of Food and Health) with Professor John McGrath, Queen’s School of Biological Sciences and IGFS and a Director of the Irish Nutrient Sustainability Platform, on (opens in a new window)LAB-MACC (Land-Use, Agriculture and Bioenergy Measures for the Abatement of Climate Change and inclusion in Marginal Abatement Cost Curve analyses).

UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science

Agriculture and Food Science Centre, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
T: +353 1 716 7205 | Location Map(opens in a new window)