Food research

Food is essential for human existence and provides a touchstone for research that promotes human and societal progress, while ensuring the sustainability of the earth’s natural resources and ecosystems.

The economy and society face grand challenges in terms of securing food productivity and resilience, while delivering positive impacts upon the environment, public health, and social relations.

Our research applies science and technology, and social and cultural investigation to food consumption and production, forging cross disciplinary collaborations between our different areas of expertise in order to inform and support industry, policy makers, the professions and civil society to meet these challenges.

This page gives you direct access to some of our key projects and offers links to the Research Centres and Groups, degree courses and PhD opportunities that come under the Food research theme.

Food research at Herts covers a wide range of disciplines and provides answers to issues of concern to our business, policy and civil society partners: from food crop protection to environmental management; from food policy and governance of food chains to food and beverage histories; from nutrient analysis of foods to public health interventions to improve peoples' diets.

Professor David Barling

David Barling

Professor David Barling is Director of the Centre for Agriculture, Food and Environmental Management at the University of Hertfordshire.

His research focuses on food policy, food security and sustainability, and the governance of the agri-food sector. Previously, he held the position of Reader in Food Policy at City University London. He has been the principal investigator and workpackage leader on a number of of externally funded research projects, including EU 7th Framework and Horizon 2020 collaborations, and has supervised a number of PhD students. He is co-author of Food Policy: integrating, health, environment and society (Oxford University Press 2009) and co-editor of Ethical Traceability and Communicating Food (Springer 2008), and editor of the annual book serial Advances in Food Security and Sustainability (Academic Press 2016ff).

Research Centres and Groups

Food research at the University of Hertfordshire takes place across a number of Research Centres, Groups and disciplines.

Doctorates, degrees and courses

We offer one of the most diverse range of research degree programmes in the UK.

Visit our Doctoral College to find out more.