Prompted by the article The role of fats in the transition to sustainable diets (2021) authored by Bojana Bajželj, Federica Laguzzi and Elin Röös, TABLE hosted a webinar on 13 April 2022 to discuss the role of fats from a food systems perspective. The discussion covered environmental considerations and tradeoffs with different sources of fat production, the nutritional nuances of different types of fat, and what role could microbial oils and insects play in 'solving the fat gap.'
In discussions about food and sustainability, we hear a lot about protein. Far less attention is paid to another essential nutrient: fat.
The event, chaired by TABLE director Tara Garnett, included short presentations and several Q&A discussions with the following speakers:
- Bojana Bajzelj - head of Climate at Supercritical - Bojana spoke about their study to find out whether we are eating enough or too much fat, and what strategies seem most promising in terms of producing fats sustainably.
- Federica Laguzzi - Assistant Prof in Environmental Medicine at Karolinska Institute - Federica gave a general overview of what fats are, why they are important for humans, their dietary sources and quick overview of the evidence between fats and health.
- Hanna Karlsson Potter - Researcher at Energy and Technology at SLU - Hanna spoke about microbial oils especially oleaginous yeast. How the yeast can be produced, what types of feedstock that can be used for, and what the oil can be used for.
- Cecilia Lalander - Assoc Prof in Environment Engineering at SLU - Cecilia talked about the potential of using fly larvae to link waste management to food production.
- Adrian Muller - Researcher in Department of Socioecononomic Sciences at the Research Institute for Organic Agriculture (FiBL) - Adrian addressed some aspects of replacing palm oil with rapeseed oil, based on an ongoing project from the organic oil and fat sector.
The event agenda was as follows:
0:00-0:05 Welcome and introductions Tara Garnett
0:05-0:15 The role of fat in sustainable diets Bojana Bajzelj
0:15-0:25 The need for fat: nutrition Federica Laguzzi
0:25-0:40 Audience questions
How can we solve the fat gap?
0:40-0:50 Microbial/fungal oils Hanna Karlsson
0:50-1:00 Insects Cecilia Lalander
1:00-1:10 Replacing palm oil w/ other oils Adrian Muller
1:10-1:30 Audience Q&A and concluding remarks
Please feel free to watch the recording below and continue the conversation on our community platform.