Work Package 1 (WP 1) of the InnoFood Africa (IFA) Project is charged with conducting country-specific market and consumer surveys to support development of new value chains (local and export), nutritional guidelines and food design. In the consumer studies, WP1 investigates consumer attitudes and dispositions related to food acceptance, health and taste issues in the four African countries.
During the months of February and March 2021, sensory and consumer scientists drawn from the project partnership – the University of Pretoria, South Africa; Nofima, Norway; and Puratos began a series of trainings on the use of the IFA Sensory Training Toolbox to understand the sensory properties of food products. A total of 19 online training sessions will be hosted between March and June 2021 and will provide an invaluable opportunity for all food chain actors to learn how to use sensory and consumer tests for creating more sustainable food systems.
Other topics that participants will benefit from include sensory methodology, study designs and statistical analysis of results. Participants will gain insights on how to measure the influence of sensory properties and packaging on product perceptions and acceptance. Product design for market success, the key determinants of food choices for product development and how to inform public health policies will also be covered.
So far, almost 200 individuals from South Africa, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, and other regions of the world had registered for the training sessions. The registration link for the training is still open at http://bit.ly/InnoFoodAfricaToolbox while the presentations are available on the InnoFoodAfrica website https://innofoodafrica.eu/training-workshops/.
The other role of WP1 includes empowering local value chain actors with a focus on farmers and food processors by providing advisory services, market and business information, trainings for capacity building and links to value chain actors.