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Past events

3rd October 2018 A celebratory event to mark the 25th anniversary of a hugely successful partnership between academia and industry, and a discovery which changed modern farming practices worldwide, took place on Wednesday 3 October 2018 at the Wellesbourne Campus, University of Warwick.
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22 June

A workshop, organised by the Centre for the History of Medicine and the Institute of Advanced Studies, to consider the crosscutting relations between food and caste hierarchy in India. While critically reflecting on the historical and social constructions of food, nutrition and health in colonial and late colonial times, also considered were the analytics of what caste can - and can’t - do for understanding Indian food politics. Along with reviewing a global history of nutrition, historians working on the cultural politics of food talked about the mutual constitution of food and caste in relation to reproduction, anti-caste resistance, sociability and the advertising of food in colonial and late colonial India. Further information    Caste-ing Nutrition 
18 June 2018

Can't we do it ourseleves?

A 1940s project to set up a healthy housing estate for Coventry has inspired a new generation of city residents to think about the relationship between food, community and health. The Coventry Family Health Club was the dream of city GP Dr Kenneth Barlow who wanted to discover if people could plan and build their own self-sufficient community. Although two farms were bought in Binley Woods and more than 200 families signed up for the scheme, the proposals were rejected by Coventry City Council in 1947. Now the ideas behind the Coventry Family Health Club – and another healthy community scheme in Peckham, London, which did go ahead – have inspired a project to encourage the people of Coventry to think more about healthy eating and how food can help build communities.

Dr Marina Chang, of Coventry's Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience has teamed up with Sophie Greenway, PhD student at the University of Warwick's Centre for the History of Medicine to run a series of public events to share the stories of the Coventry Family Health Club and The Peckham Experiment with people in the city. The events have included film screenings and discussions about the two projects and how the ideas behind them can be applied in today’s society and help people live healthier lifestyles. Photographs taken and comments recorded during the events have been used to create a tablecloth for use in the Moat House Leisure and Neighbourhood Centre in Winston Avenue, Coventry. The researchers have worked alongside the Moat House Community Trust, which runs the centre.

The project – titled 'Can’t We Do It Ourselves?' - is part of a series of collaborations this summer between the city’s two universities to bring their research directly to local people in the run up to UK City of Culture 2021.

Dr Marina Chang, a research associate at Coventry University’s Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience, said:

“We’re using the community spirit evident during the Family Health Club as a catalyst to encourage people to think about what they eat, how they can take control of their own health and how they can empower their own communities to make a difference.”

Sophie Greenway, a PhD student in the Centre for the History of Medicine at the University of Warwick, said:

“The Family Health Club has been relegated to a footnote in the city’s history, even though members felt the benefits of its ethos right from the start. This project seeks to change that by making people more aware of the ideas behind it and how they can apply those to their own lives.”

18 June 2018

Food poverty workshop - led by Dr Martine Barons (Warwick) and Professor Ann Nicholson

14 June 2018

Conference: Plant Variety Protection Debates: Connecting Law, Science and Social Science

The World Trade Organisation’s obligation for all members to protect plant varieties as set out in Article 27.3b of the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights raises debates about appropriate systems of protection. To unpack these debates, this multidisciplinary conference explored the process and importance of plant breeding, definition of plant varieties, conditions for protecting new plant varieties, as well as existing systems of protection. The conference also addressed the future of intellectual property rights for plant varieties considering global discussions on agroecology, climate change, food security and food sovereignty. The objectives of the conference were:

  • To provide a platform for law, science and social science researchers to exchange knowledge about plant variety protectionTo bring together key organisations and stakeholders involved in plant variety protection to discuss recent developments
  • To contribute to discussions on the pending review of the plant variety protection provision in the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (Art. 27.3b)

The conference was organised by Dr Titilayo Adebola from the Law Department.


27 March

Food GRP Showcase Event

An event to provide information on Warwick's engagement with ‘food’ through research and teaching, and ‘pump-priming’ funding and other opportunities available to engage with the Food GRP. The event closed with an exploratory performance-conversation with women in UK agriculture entitled 'Who's driving the tractor?' performed by the Theatre and Performance Studies department. Further information

  Whos driving the tractor 
22 November 2017

Rosemary Collier gave a presentation entitled 'Food at the University of Warwick' at the Warwickshire Food and Drink Showcase Exhibition

21 April 2017

The Warwick Food GRP part-funded a one-day conference, Diet and Nutrition in Institutions of Care: History & Policy, which joined up the work of the Centre for History of Medicine’s Cultural History of the NHS project and a Wellcome funded multi-institution (of which Warwick is one) project Prisoners, Medical Care and Entitlement to Health in England and Ireland 1850-2000.

The one day event saw expert speakers and guests discuss the history of, and current policy around, diet and nutrition in institutions of care. They considered who makes the choices around food in institutions, and how and why those decisions might differ in terms of funding, quality, and source in different settings. The workshop particularly focused on hospitals and prisons.


10 February

‘How Food Shapes our Lives: Hungry Cities and Beyond?’

Carolyn Steel, an architect, lecturer and author of 'Hungry City' visited the University of Warwick to deliver a lecture and lead a discussion exploring the inner lives of cities, how they have been fed through history, starting from around 10,000 years ago, and how we might use food to re-think the design of cities in the future.

Carolyn’s TED talk – ‘How Food Shapes our Cities’

  Carolyn Steel 
22 August 2016. Rosemary Collier gave a presentation entitled 'Challenges to sustainable production of fruits and vegetables' at the 18th World Congress of Food Science and Technology, Dublin    
7th July 2016

CFP: Critical Foodscapes: what does the future hold for urban gardening?
A one-day conference held at the University of Warwick, part-funded by the Warwick’s IAS and Food GRP. The conference was put together by Dr Chris Maughan (IAS Early Career Fellow) with the intention of bringing a ‘critical studies’ approach to the emerging research area of urban community food growing; that is to put critical but constructive pressure on some of the assumptions which underlie current theory and practice of urban gardening. More information

  Urban Gardening 

22nd May-11th June 2016

The PerFarmance Project, sponsored by the University of Warwick Food GRP produced an exchange between artists and those engaged in the growing of food. Over a three week period, Melissa Aldape, Juan Aldape, and Chris Bell researched food production in the West Midlands, held a series of workshops on the ways in which body and text can communicate the stories of food production and, with community members, developed an original site-specific performance piece based upon material developed during the workshops.

9th June 2016

The Role of Technology in Enabling Sustainable Food Supply Chains

In partnership with the University of Warwick, the Industry and Parliament Trust hosted a breakfast meeting at the Houses of Parliament on the role of technology in enabling sustainable food supply chains. The meeting was chaired by Dan Crossley, Executive Director, Food Ethics Council and the guest speakers were Dr Stephen Humphreys, Food Industry Manager, Bayer CropScience and Dr Rosemary Collier, Director of Warwick Crop Centre, School of Life Sciences, University of Warwick. Link to podcast here.

  Industry and Parliament Trust 
4th June 2016

Kenilworth Show

Staff and students from the School of Life Sciences, including Warwick Crop Centre, manned an interactive display at the Kenilworth Show. They demonstrated how the biological diversity of soil can be seen – looking at soil from the bucket to the microscope.

   Kenilworth Show
2nd June 2016

Workshop on Food and Nutritional Security at the European Parliament

Brian Thomas and Rosemary Collier (School of Life Sciences) attended this workshop as members of the European Plant Science Organisation (EPSO). The purpose of the meeting was to help engage policy makers from the European Parliament, representatives from the European Commission and the Member States in a discussion of the potential contributions from plant science, breeding and farming towards food security and nutrition and to highlight the advances and opportunities associated with the field. It was attended by a range of stakeholders, including public researchers, breeding industry representatives, farmers, policy makers and journalists. Meeting summary.


13th May

Food For Thought

A University event held in the Students Union, bringing together a range of speakers including Warwick and Coventry academics along with other charities and organisations working with food, to discuss the issues of food waste and wellbeing. Further details.
Warwick SU Food Waste Campaign video.

   Food For Thought

4th May

Workshop on Organic Movements, Markets & Systems.
A workshop held on Wednesday 4th May 2016 at the Wellesbourne campus to consider the opportunities and challenges in 'mainstreaming' organic systems. Further details.

   Organics Workshop
18th November 2015

Delivering dietary diversity using natural variation in crops
The University of Warwick hosted a seminar session at Food Matters Live, London ExCel on 18th November.

   Carrot Diversity
24th September 2015

Sandpit to identify technologies which have potential application in agriculture in the developing world

The aim of a sandpit held on the Wellesbourne Campus was to identify technologies which have potential application in agriculture in the developing world, and particularly for East Africa, within the DfID-funded SEED programme. The sandpit was organised jointly by the University of Warwick Global Priority on Food and H2O Venture Partners.

22nd April-
24th June 2015

Food GRP workshop programme
In the spirit of furthering our interdisciplinary cooperation, a multidisciplinary Food GRP Workshop programme was organised, in which each week there was a discussion around a presentation on current research with contributions from a range of departments.







w/c 8th June 2015

Food GRP events in Brussels, as part of a GRP International event programme for the University's anniversary celebrations
As part of an exciting programme of research-led events in 2015 for the University of Warwick's 50th anniversary celebrations, the Food GRP, one of the University's Global Research Priorities held events in Brussels the week beginning 8th June, as part of a GRP International event programme, focusing on bee health and the sustainable use of pesticides.


 Dave Chandler in Brussels





15-17th April 2015

Workshop on evidence-based decision support for food security
This workshop brought together food domain experts and modelling experts in an exciting cross-disciplinary meeting to inform and extend current food security research.

This workshop brought together two groups of people. The first included domain experts whose primary research activities lie in food research from production, supply to need and nutrition and practitioners who are responsible for policy enactment associated with a nation's food security. The second group of researchers are experts in the elicitation of domain judgments associated with large complex systems of which food production, supply and delivery is an example together with experts in the development of the efficient and effective decision support for such systems. The workshop forms part of a long term aim to build large scale decision support tools to support crisis management and policy design and their implementation associated with addressing food deprivation and alleviating food poverty in the light of various crises and political imperatives.

A number of promising new collaborations are being explored as a result of the workshop.

Details of speakers and slides from their talks are available here: Workshop speakers and talks

The workshop was organised and run by Professor Jim Smith and Dr Martine Barons as part of their 3-year EPSRC-funded project on coherent inference over a network of probabilistic systems for decision support with applications to food security.


 Evidence based decision support





27th March 2015

Eating well: experience and value in meals.  At this interdisciplinary workshop researchers and practitioners shared diverse expertise relevant to what is at stake when people gather to eat. A tremendously rich set of factors converge in meals, affecting the meaning, pleasures and healthiness of daily life, the transmission and vitality of cultures, and the sustainability and fairness of large-scale food policies and practices. This workshop aimed to integrate our understanding of these factors, with the hope of developing ideas for a ‘future of meals’ that is well-informed, is ethical and makes the most of meals’ experiential, creative and cultural potential. It was organised by Eileen John and Alisa Mandrigin (Warwick, Philosophy), and Tereza Stehlíková (Royal College of Art/Westminster). This event was made possible through the generous support of the British Society of Aesthetics, the AHRC Re-Thinking the Senses Project, and the Warwick Food GRP Community.


 Dinner Tray

13th March 2015

On Friday 13th March, the Vice-Chancellor planted the first tree in a new ‘Jam Grove’ outside the Centre for Lifelong Learning at Westwood. The idea came from within Warwick, after a range of workshops, events and consultations identified a strong desire among our community to make our campus more inviting, engaging, sustainable and productive. From this, the idea of a series of garden projects has developed starting with an accessible garden of fruit trees and berries. The garden will have seating and be accessible to all. The area can be used for informal and formal meetings and teaching as well as being a place to relax, to help out with maintaining the space and, in the years to come, to help yourselves to fruit. Find out more here.


 Jam Grove


17th February

Go Green Week 2015 Disco Soup
For the second year in a row, we've fought against food waste with amazing rhythm &peel! All Disco Soup/Salad events
  Disco Soup 2015 


The Warwick Food GRP, Centre for the Study of Women and Gender (CSWG) and School of Theatre Studies hosted an afternoon of “Occupy Your Body Workshop” led by Amy Godfrey and Louisa Harvey (summary and presentation). The workshop was followed by “The Biscuit Chronicles”, a performance by Amy Godfrey. Further details of the event can be found here:


 Amy Godfrey





5th November 2014

The Warwick Food GRP held a seminar in the The University of Warwick Brussels Office
on 'Food security policy-making: an interdisciplinary approach'. The seminar was led by Professor Jim Smith and Dr Martine Barons and was followed by a panel discussion and a networking session. Further details.



11th June
Food Union Meets Disco Salad
A joint event with The Pod in Coventry. A Disco Salad made out of food that would otherwise go to waste. Salad was prepared by volunteers and was given for free, all this listening to music played by DJ Mr Lowndes. All Disco Soup/Salad events
   Food Union meets Disco Salad
May 2014
Coventry Mysteries Festival 'The Institute of Impossibility' 23–25 May 2014. Warwick Crop Centre (Battlefield Earth) took part in all performances together with other colleagues from Warwick.   Institute of Impossibility 

22nd April

Food GRP Calendar Competition
A Calendar to reflect how diverse the Warwick student community sees food and showcase the wealth of knowledge and creativity around food.


 Food GRP Calendar Competition


3rd-7th March 2014

The Warwick Global Research Priority Group (GRP) on Food and Warwick Institute of Advanced Study invited three distinguished academics as Visiting Fellows. The Fellows took part in a number of events and activities focused on the way that research may be used to inform the way that food is produced in the future, including a post-graduate workshop and a public lecture on the way we grow and distribute food.


 Visiting Fellows and Warwick postgraduate students


20th February 2014

A Disco Soup event took place at the University Piazza on 20th February 2014 to raise awareness about food waste and to dance, cook and eat good food together. All Disco Soup/Salad events.


 Disco Soup 2014


11th December 2013

Ben Richardson, Carla Sarrouy and Sarah Goler took part in a PechaKuka event in Coventry on FOOD - Passion/Poverty/Politics





27th November 2013

Tristram Stuart spoke on 'Solving the Global Food Scandal'. His talk was attended by well over 100 people from the University and the surrounding area.

Tristram is the winner of the international environmental award, The Sophie Prize 2011, for his fight against food waste. Tristram has become a renowned campaigner, working in several countries to help improve the environmental and social impact of food production. His latest international prize-winning book 'Waste: Uncovering the Global Food Scandal' revealed that Western countries waste up to half of their food, and that tackling this problem is one of the simplest ways of reducing pressure on the environment and on global food supplies.




22nd October

'Food Security and Environmental Change: A Two-Way Street'
Dr John Ingram, Environmental Change Institute, University of Oxford



17th October

FUTURE FOODSCAPES: GROW WARWICK - an interdisciplinary collaboration connected to the Food Global Research Priority, using the arts to imagine what ‘growing local’ might mean in in the West Midlands in central England. It proposed imaginative ways to increase public knowledge about how our food is produced and to encourage changes in attitudes and behaviour around issues of food. Using the University of Warwick as a possible model of a community where people live and work, a series of performance installations created by Warwick students and staff, artists, and community volunteers asking questions about and suggesting innovative propositions for local food production and consumption in the West Midlands.    Grow Warwick
16th October 2013 Food (In) Security Conference at Warwick University
This one-day conference/workshop, organised by a group of PhD students at the department of Politics and International Studies, University of Warwick, was a starting point for a new postgraduate community where members come together to discuss important issues related to global food security. The intention of the workshop was to strengthen the study of food security by exploring its social, environmental and especially international dimensions. The date selected for the workshop had symbolic significance as October 16th was World Food Day, celebrated by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and around the world to raise awareness of the issues behind poverty and hunger. Listen to some of the presentations.

25th March

Research Workshop - What is sustainability?
This event was the first part of a project called "Approaches to Sustainability". Its main objective is to provide a central focal point for conversation on issues of sustainability, open and advertised to every faculty of the university. It intends to explore the synergies of the work taking place in different areas by creating a central hub for all the issues that surround sustainability.

Contacts: Pedro Florencio or Ian Hancox .

9th March 2013

Conference - 'Planetary Cancer: Growth, Economy and Culture in an Era of Climate Catastrophe'
Speakers: Jason W. Moore (Umea University), Josh Hodge, (Life Sciences, University of Warwick)
Ben Richardson (Politics, University of Warwick), Robert Spencer (Literature, University of Manchester)







15th February 2013

'Prosperity for the Poor and Health for all'
Dr Dyno Keatinge, The Director General of AVRDC-World Vegetable Center







8th February 2013

Gendering Food Security. Half day workshop in conjunction with the Centre for the Study of Women and Gender. Speakers: Stephanie Barrientos (Manchester), Stefanie Lemke (Hohenheim), Jess Duncan (City) and Lopamudra Saxena (Independent researcher).



9th January
'Food acquisition and consumption practices among small-holder farmers in South Africa'
Dr Elizabeth Hull
10th September
Birmingham Sustainability Forum "Feeding the City"    
11th July
Food security: The value of vegetables    
6th July

Household Food Security in the Global North: Challenges and Responsibilities







14th November 2011

Ideas Cafe on Food Security