organizing committee  

Linking Human Health Research to Product Development and Marketing
Carla L. Thorvaldson
Alberta Milk, Edmonton, Alberta,

Human health research demonstrating positive health outcomes should be linked to the development of a marketable food product. This may seem like a monumental task, however, by embracing a new model of research collaboration, it is possible.
When developing a new food product careful consideration must be given to understanding the consumer and the marketplace. Consumers’ interest and knowledge in nutrition, and functional foods, as well as current trends are key. The impact of the media on consumers’ knowledge, attitudes and beliefs about nutrition and food is of critical importance. From a researcher perspective, being able to effectively communicate results to consumers via the media is significant and guidelines for success do exist. We must learn how to connect with consumers to remain credible.
The CLA Network is an example of this new method of collaboration in which a number of research teams work towards a common goal. A network is a new concept that was sought as a solution to the lack of technology transfer and product development coming from research. Networks are truly a paradigm shift from the traditional research. Funding agencies are looking at networks as a future model for research.

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