PlantLink News – May

The last traces of winter are fading away, welcoming the warmth and vibrant colours of spring! With this weather change comes an exciting array of events, courses, and conferences that we are pleased to announce in this month’s newsletter!
Do not forget to sign-up and join PlantLink in Lund on May 9th for Fascination of Plants DayWhat to eat in times of crisis – the perspective of innovation and sustainability. Another PlantLink event registration is now open; save the date for the 5th of October with another PlantLink Day – Biodiversity: the Key to Resilient Agri-Food Systems. Do not miss the registration deadlines for the 2nd Food Oats Conference, the 12th SPPS PhD Conference, and join the Foodtech Forum in Malmö! May is also jam-packed with interesting courses and workshops, such as Workshop on plant health from a plant breeding perspective, Workshop on Swedish-grown protein cropsNOVA PhD courseEPSO 1st Workshop on Future Proofed Crops and NPPN field day. Looking for inspiring reading? Check out the Agrifood report 2023:1 and the LU master students’ news release. Deniz Koca is May’s featured researcher, and we also bring an interview with SemioPlant AB, a unique company founded on a partnership between LU and SLU. Finally, PlantLink is delighted to welcome Carl Jonson to the steering committee!

1. Register for the Fascination of Plants Day – 09 May, Lund

PlantLink cordially invites you to Fascination of Plants Day: What to eat in times of crisis – the perspective of innovation and sustainability; on the 9th of May from 15:15 in the Auditorium “Forum” of Ideon Alpha in Lund. Following the initial panel discussion, the floor will be open to anybody who wants to join! Should we change the species we grow for food? How can we increase the sustainability and resilience of crops? 
Panellists: Aakash Chawade, associate professor of Genetics and Breeding Informatics, SLU; Lennart Olsson, professor of Geography at LU, founding Director of LUCSUS; Lieselotte Cloetens, senior lecturer and group leader of Biomedical Nutrition, LTH, LU; Jun Niimi (Ph.D.), researcher and expert in Sensory Perception of Food and Beverages, RISE. The debate will be guided by Peter Sylwan, science journalist.

The event is also available in the remote form

More information and sign-up

2. Register for PlantLink Day – 05 October, Lund

Another PlantLink Day is on its way, this time with an emphasis on biodiversity! The theme for this year is “Biodiversity: the key to resilient agri-food systems.”
Confirmed speakers: Agnes Bernis Fonteneau with 15 years of experience with FAO and Bioversity international; Lise Lykke Steffensen, Director of the Nordic Genetic Resource Centre; Mohammad Bahram, Department of Ecology, SLU; Maj Rundlöf, principal investigator at Biodiversity and Ecosystem services in a Changing Climate, Lund University; Susanne Arvidsson, Director of the Mistra BIOPATH project, Lund University; and Michael Broberg Palmgren, professor at the department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, University of Copenhagen.
Register here.

3. Join the 2nd Food Oats Conference – 19-21 of June, Lund 

The focus of this on-site conference will be on Oats for Future – dietary fibers and other bioactive compounds. Included topics: Oat genetic resources; Oat breeding and management; Oat processing; Oat and health; Innovation and consumer trends. Do not miss this excellent networking opportunity, where researchers and industrial representatives in the oat field are brought together!
Keynote speakers: Catherine Howard, Aberystwyth University, UK, Sarah Clarke, ADAS, UK, Lucia Gutierrez, University of Wisconsin-Madison, US, Emilia Nordlund, VTT Finland, Rikard Lamberg, Chalmers, Sweden, Kristofer Cook, Carbiotix, Sweden.
Deadline for abstract submission and registration: 5th of May
More information and registration.

4. Sign up for the Final NordPlant Annual meeting: The future of plant phenotyping – 22-23 November, Båstad 

NordPlant is coming to its sixth and last year. With this last annual meeting, we will sum up the progress around plant phenotyping and modelling for future climates, but foremost we will look into the future of plant phenotyping! Confirmed keynote speakers are David Rousseau (INREA) and Shawn Kefauver (University of Barcelona).
The meeting will be in Hotell Skansen, Båstad, Sweden. A full program will be announced later. The meeting will be back-to-back with the NPPN annual workshop 23-24 November. A number of rooms at Hotell Skansen will be pre-booked for participants.
Hotel rooms are paid by the participants, but there are 50 free tickets covering food for onsite attendance.
More information and sign up for the meeting here!

5. NordPlant annual report has been submitted to NordForsk

The year 2022 was the second to last year for NordPlant, and its annual report has just been submitted to Nordforsk. You can read the summary highlighting a number of achievements and ongoing work here. The full NordPlant annual report for 2022 will be published after it is approved by NordForsk.

6. Workshop on plant health from a plant breeding perspective – 29 May, Höörs

SLU Grogrund and SLU Partnership Alnarp invite you to a workshop on development and challenges to promote good plant health, including the latest EU regulations. Results from SLU Grogrund and future prospects and needs from the industry will also be presented. If you would like to discuss a proposal at the meeting, email it to Therese Bengtsson by May 12.
Time and place: Monday 29 May, 10.00-15.00; Höörs gästgifwaregård

Registration – no later than May 12!

7. Join the workshop on Swedish-grown protein crops – 08 May, SLU Alnarp

The workshop is organised by Livsmedelsakademin. Skånebönan is a force-gathering initiative aiming at establishing Skåne as a leading region in innovative plant proteins, as well as an attractive location for partnerships and investments in the entire value chain of plant proteins. The goal of the day is to provide concrete solutions to the challenges associated with increased protein crop demand, production and processing.

Time and place: May 8, 09.30 – 15.00, Slottet, Stora sessionalen, SLU Alnarp

Speakers: Richard Clerselius, Orkla; Malin Göransson, R&D team Sproud; Sara Berger, CEO Sproud; Margaretha Månsson, Lantmännen; Kjell Svegrup, farmer; Georg Carlsson, SLU Alnarp and Karolina Östbring, Department of Food Technology, Lund University.

8. Foodtech Forum – 25 April, Malmö

Foodtech Innovation Network offers unique opportunity for start-ups, industry professionals, public organizations, investors, and academics to come together. The Foodtech Forum is a half-day event that will take place on the 25th of April at Slagthuset Malmö. It will include a food-tasting exhibition, pitches from the stage, panel discussions, a lounge area and networking opportunities.
Attendees include: Pia Qvarnström from Bärta, Jared Christensen from Nothing Fishy, Anna Rosengren from Veg of Lund, Vahid Sohrabpour from Saveggy, Arwa Mustafa from Arwa FoodTech, Junas Lundh from OptiCept Technologies, Kristina Andersson from Glucanova among many other plant-based companies in the region. 
More information and registration.  

9. 12th SPPS PhD conference “Everything is hard before it gets easy – 27-29 September, Lund

The main topic of the 12th SPPS PhD Student Conference is the process of doctoral studies. The speakers will cover scientific, formal and personal aspects of being a PhD student. You will be able to discuss your projects in smaller groups, share your experience and ask questions. 
More information and registration.

10. ELLS Student Conference 2023 – 17-18 November, Hohenheim

Join the upcoming ELLS student conference in Hohenheim, Germany, with the title “The Power of Science – Many Perspectives on our World”. Subthemes:

  1. Food for the world
    The power of food and food systems: Improving global food production
  2. Big perspectives on small things
    The power of plants, insects, microorganisms, and biotechnology: Small things can make a major difference
  3. Pigs, pine trees, and everything in between
    The power of animal science and forestry: Managing livestock and forests
  4. Social economy in a changing world
    The power of (bio)economics and management: Moving towards a sustainable economy
  5. Our planet as a resource
    The power of organic agriculture: Solutions to droughts, floods, pests, and other challenges farmers deal with

Who can apply? BSc, MSc and first-year Ph.D. students (at the time of submission of the abstract) of universities affiliated with the ELLS network. 
More information and registration.

11. NPPN Field Day – 19 June, NMBU, Norway

Join the NPPN Field Day on 19 June 2023 in Norway. It will start with presentations at Norwegian University of Life Science (NMBU). Afterwards, there will be an excursion to the Vollenbæk Research station and to Field Demonstrations there. The tour will continue by a ferry to the Oscarsborg castle, finishing with a nice dinner there. 
Full program and registration.

12. NOVA PhD course “High throughput field phenotyping and vegetation mapping” – 12-16 June, NMBU, Ås, Norway

The course aims to introduce the emerging research fields of high throughput plant phenotyping used for vegetation mapping and plant breeding, with a focus on remote sensing field phenotyping methodologies and related data analysis. The basic principles of commonly used remote sensing UAV-based imaging methods in high-throughput field phenotyping and vegetation mapping will be introduced together with practical examples. 
More information and registration.

13. EPSO 1st Workshop on Future Proofed Crops online – 13th July

The workshop has three aims. Firstly, brief introductions referring to the three pillars – improving abiotic stress, photosynthesis and resource use efficiency of crops – to increase crop yield in a stable way and adapt to climate change and be more sustainable. Secondly, there will be two short summaries – of the CropBooster recommendations and of the EPSO submission to the Horizon Europe consultation. Thirdly, the next steps of the WG, including the options to implement the research foreseen, will be discussed.
Registration deadline 30th April
More information and registration.

14. Agrifood report 2023:1 – Increased productivity in agriculture – how is the environment affected?

Read the latest report by the AgriFood Economics Center examining the relationship between productivity development and environmental impact in the Swedish agricultural sector during the period 1985 to 2013.

15. Press release! Three crops that may become more common in the grocery store in the future – if students get to decide

Although sweet lupinebuckwheat and amaranth are healthy and climate-friendly crops, we rarely eat them. Engineering students in food technology at Lund University have recently experimented with completely new products where these crops play the key role! 
Read the article here.

16. Open positions

SLU Alnarp
 PhD position at Forest Management.
More information.
Lund University
 Assistant professor in Food technology with specialization in dairy technology.
More information.
Assistant researcher within Protein Structure and Bioinformatics.
More information.
Postdoctoral fellow in Evolutionary and conservation genomics.
More information.
PhD student in environmental science.
More information.
Doctoral student in Biology.
More information.
Research Professor in Plant Genomics and Breeding; Natural Resources Institute Finland.
More information.

17. The Story of Success – SemioPlant AB

In this interview, Christer Löfstedt and Per Hofvander introduce a unique collaboration between the Pheromone group at Lund University and the lipid biochemistry and plant biotechnology group at SLU, Alnarp. This initiative resulted in the founding of SemioPlant AB company, which was also supported by PlantLink seed money
Read the full interview.

18. Researcher in the Spotlight – Deniz Koca

Deniz Koca is an assistant professor at Lund University, Centre for Environmental and Climate Science. His main expertise lies in applied systems analysis, system dynamics modelling and facilitation of stakeholder participatory group modelling process. What is the role of applied systems science in food systems transformation?  
Read the interview.

19. New PlantLink steering committee representative – Carl Jonson

We cordially welcome our new representative from Region Skåne! Carl worked six years at SLU Holding and was one of the founders of the Plant Protein Factory. For the last 15 years, Carl has been working with sustainability in the research and development as a consultant, entrepreneur and as a business advisor.