Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences


The Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences supports enhanced health outcomes and economic benefits for Australia, by conducting integrated fundamental and applied research to improve the taste, quality, appearance, nutritional value and safety of food.

We aim to understand the fundamental characteristics of food that influence processing, food quality, consumer perception and nutritional value.

We support a ‘fork to farm’ consumer and nutritional focus to influence production choices across the agricultural industries.

Professor Yasmina Sultanbawa 
Centre Director

Tel +61 7 336 52145

Our centre's expertise includes:

•  Food quality and human nutrition
•  Sensory and consumer science
•  Molecular basis for food quality
•  Food bio-materials and processing
• Molecular parasitology
•  Host/pathogen interactions using genomics and biotechnology
•  Biofortification of fruit, nuts and vegetables 

Research Highlights

Australian native plants are packed with unique and complex phytonutrients that allow the plant to survive in some of the world’s harshest environments. The ARC Training Centre for Uniquely Australian Foods are working with indigenous industry and communities to research the nutritional characteristics of these foods – and investigate the provenance of foods grown in Australia to transform the native Food and Agribusiness Sector.
Scientists in Queensland are developing purple sweetcorn varieties with the horticulture industry to help growers respond to increasingly healthconscious consumers. Being delivered by the University of Queensland, and jointly funded by the grower-owned research and development company, Hort Innovation, the new varieties are being developed through natural breeding programs

Research Impact

An Indigenous fruit which is one of the earliest known plant foods eaten in Australia could be the next big thing in the bush foods industry.

Case studies

A recent discovery about the role of debranching enzymes in starches will have major implications for nutrition and human health, according to Professor Bob Gilbert, Research Professor at the University of Queensland.
Most people know that dietary fibre is important for human health and that cereal grains such as barley and rye are a reliable source of that fibre. However, exactly what constitutes dietary fibre is not nearly as well understood.
Results from a QAAFI study show the bran fraction of Australia’s only white coloured sorghum hybrid, Liberty, contains a broad range of ‘healthy’ phytochemicals – raising the grain’s potential for human health food markets.

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