In the period 13-18 of February 2017 the University of Food Technologies organized and hosted a short-term joint staff training event as an activity of the international Erasmus+ educational project KNOWinFOOD. The project is coordinated by SAIAPM Faculty from ULBS Romania, and has IUT Lyon France, DU Debrecen Hungary, UFT Plovdiv Bulgaria and Supremia SA Romania as partners. Representatives from the coordinator and all project partners were present at the training.
The project “Knowledge triangle for food innovation by harnessing the tradition and assuring sustainability” (KNOWinFOOD) focuses on the collaboration between the three components of the Knowledge Triangle: the HIGHER EDUCATION as knowledge producer, the ACADEMIC RESEARCH as creativity source, and BUSINESS, with its entrepreneurial spirit.
In a new educational approach, students will solve tasks given by industry by developing new sustainable foods based on traditional ones. The needed knowledge will be provided by the researchers. The acquiring and enriching of this knowledge by the students will be facilitated by the teachers in blended training sessions. Their innovative skills will be perfected in the practical product development sessions. The project would give the students the opportunity to be trained to develop new safe and sustainable foods by harnessing the tradition. Positive attitudes relative own development and future job will be enhanced by the appreciation of the industry at the final product contest that will judge the products. This complex educational process will be possible only through a web platform developed during the project that: will bring together all participants; will allow collaborative knowledge creation (Knowledge bases) and assimilation (e-Learning material); will guide the innovative development process; will record the whole learning experience for inspiration and dissemination.
During the event at UFT, Plovdiv were conducted trainings on the web platform use for developing protocols and gathering data for the learning resources. The learning resources, organized as knowledge bases and an on-line training material, will be available for students to help them in developing new foods.
During the event, an exhibition of innovative confectionary and bakery products designed and prepared by the students of the bachelor programs of the department of Nutrition and tourism was organized by the University of Food Technology, Plovdiv with the unconditional assistance of the vice rector of the university and head of the department of Nutrition and tourism – prof. Yordanka Aleksieva, PhD. The exhibition was an excellent preliminary exercise on food innovation and traditional food reinvention. Edible flowers for impressive presentation; spirulina as food coloring agent stood out as the stars of the exhibition.
A degustation of traditional foods and drinks from project partner countries was made. The degustation of traditional Bulgarian wines and beverages was carried out by Assoc. Prof. Hristo Spasov, PhD, Head of the department of Wine and Brewing. The attaché for academic and scientific cooperation from the French Institute in Bulgaria took part in the exhibition, the degustation and discussions.
The members of the Bulgarian team on the project KNOWinFOOD thank sincerely Prof. Kolyo Dinkov, DSc, Rector of the University of Food Technologies and Prof. Yordanka Aleksieva, PhD, Vice rector of the University of Food Technologies and Assoc. Prof. Krasimir Bambalov, PhD for their support and help in the organization of the training and the practical sessions; and Assoc. Prof. Hristo Spasov for the preparation and conduction of the degustation of traditional Bulgarian wines and beverages.