Nottingham Trent University becomes ‘Centre of Expertise’

Nottingham Trent University has been recognised by the government as a ‘Centre of Expertise’ for food authenticity testing. 

The announcement by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) means that the university will become part of the government’s ‘Food Authenticity Network’.

The network aims to raise awareness of expertise in the area of food authenticity and to ensure the UK has access to a network of laboratories capable of testing food on behalf of retailers and suppliers and giving consumers confidence in the food they buy.

Nottingham Trent University has been at the forefront of helping government reduce food fraud, specifically through the detection of undeclared offal and added blood in meat products

The university has pioneered the development of tests capable of identifying adulterated meat products through the presence of specific proteins.

Professor Billett, head of food authenticity in Nottingham Trent University’s School of Science and Technology, said: “The prevention of food adulteration is extremely important to consumers and the industry for economic, health, food safety and cultural reasons.

“I am delighted that we have been recognised as a Centre of Expertise that has pioneered the development of novel tests capable of detecting undeclared ingredients in meat products and assisting in the prevention of fraud.”

In addition to testing food samples, Professor Billett’s team will provide technical advice and guidance to industry on how to identify proteins of relevance to food authenticity.

In November it was announced that Professor Billett’s research had contributed towards Nottingham Trent University being awarded a prestigious Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education – the highest national honour for a UK university.

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