The Food Evolution Research Laboratory established its presence through an increased demand and aspirations towards enhancing the lifestyles of all people and communities who align themselves towards nutrition and health through active research studies. This allows them to understand the importance of making healthy food choices. The laboratory will be driven through interdisciplinary and collaborative structures of the University of Johannesburg’s School of Tourism and Hospitality.
The School of Tourism and Hospitality, in the College of Business and Economics number 1 ranked School in Africa, also ranked 20th globally by the global Shanghai Ranking Consultancy and 18th in Tourism and Leisure studies by QS Rankings. It is a vibrant, multicultural and dynamic school within the University.
The lab will encourage research around the evolution of food. The concept will contribute to enhanced understanding and awareness, associated with the change in eating patterns with food away from homes, movement from indigenous diets to Westernised diets and now the combination of these with the emphasis of good health and nutrition. Other timely societal and industry issues will also be the focus of the research lab such as the feeding of children, and the nexus of food, energy, and water.
To do this we at FERL have created a Virtual lab, that encompasses all the research necessary but promotes the use of the research through newly innovative and critical thinking mechanisms, which can be transferred through our newly developed website and blog, a range of social media platforms and we look forward to enhancing our virtual lab through virtual reality experiences that engage our audiences. The purpose behind creating a virtual lab is mainly due to the technological advancements in the world today. As a whole the University of Johannesburg is ensuring it stays up to date with the latest in technology and furthering its research to align to the ‘Industrial Revolution 4.0’.
To be the first innovative Hospitality Management research lab in Africa by promoting, enhancing and encouraging research on Food Evolution for a sustainable future and healthier lifestyle
“The lab will be recognised as an interdisciplinary and collaborative laboratory within and out of the University of Johannesburg specifically aligning itself to the School of Tourism and Hospitality (STH). The lab will encourage research around the evolution of food. The concept contributes to enhanced understanding and awareness, given the current climate associated with change in eating patterns with food away from homes, the movement toward healthy eating-combatting non-communicable diseases (NCDs), movement from indigenous diets to Westernised diets and now the combination of these with the emphasis on good health and nutrition. In essence the lab would provide innovative growth within a Pan-African spectrum of the STH, especially within the Hospitality department, creating an entirely new perception of the School and evidently its offering, growth and research standards. The research identity created through the lab will also provide a collaborative environment for staff and will promote, attract and recruit students both nationally and internationally to the STH for post graduate studies. This will evidently attract international visiting scholars and post-doctorate fellows and enhance the STH’s global excellence and stature.”