Funded Projects

The Seeding Food Innovation program was created to catalyze the development of trans-disciplinary research that address sustainable food and health challenges that will both impact Canadians and are of global concern. The program provides short-term grants of up to $250,000 as seed funding for novel, translational research projects.


Food Systems Lab at the University of Toronto: Evaluating the Efficacy and Innovative Potential of Food Waste Awareness Campaigns

Grantees: Dr. Virginia Maclaren, Dr. Tammara Soma, Dr. Rafaela Gutierrez Peppineli, Ms. Belinda Li, Ms. Tamara Shulman Description: Food waste is a major global issue affecting the entire food supply chain. It is estimated that anywhere between 30% and 50% of food produced for human consumption is wasted globally. In Canada, it is estimated that $31 billion dollars’ worth of food is wasted annually; the true cost of which is actually closer to $107 billion when wasted water, energy and other resources are taken into account. » More Info

Replacing antibiotics in beef cattle production with essential oils and organic acids may improve quality and fatty acid composition of beef products

Grantees: Dr. Benjamin M. Bohrer, Dr. Ira B. Mandell Description: Overall goals of this research are to investigate the effects of replacing antibiotic therapeutics (monensin and tylosin) with alternatives (essential oil blend and benzoic acid) in feedlot cattle. This study will evaluate live performance, carcass characteristics, cost of production, fresh meat quality, and sensory attributes of beef ribeye and ground beef. » More Info

Improving Aquaculture Feed Sustainability through Use of Genetically Engineered Oils

Grantees: Dr. Stefanie Colombo, Dr. Michael Arts, Dr. Richard Bazinet Description: Aquaculture will be instrumental in maintaining global food security in the future: up to 40 million metric tonnes of seafood will be required by 2030 to feed the growing human population, and over 60% of seafood will come from aquaculture. Some of the main nutritional benefits of seafood are the omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, namely eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and which have critical roles in cardiovascular and neurological health. » More Info

Replacing Sustainable production of animal protein in the absence of antibiotics

Grantees: Dr. Shayan Sharif, Dr. Raveendra Kulkarni, Dr. Joshua Gong Description: Antibiotic Growth Promoters (AGPs) have been used for decades in poultry production for growth promotion. However, in view of the worldwide ban of AGPs and the rising concerns over the spread of antibiotic resistance affecting human health, finding alternatives to antibiotics has become a necessity. Although AGPs have been effectively reducing the burden of enteric diseases, the removal of AGPs is likely to precipitate devastating diseases like Necrotic Enteritis » More Info

Stewardship science technology for monitoring the socio-ecological outcomes of farming practices

Grantees: Dr. Zia Mehrabi, Dr. Navin Ramankutty, Dr. Hannah Wittman Description: The rise in digital technology and data (smart phones, internet, satellite observations, climate monitoring networks, crop models, statistical learning) offer a way to help assist farmers manage their holdings with higher input efficiently, and for higher profits. This has been well recognized by leading commercial farm management technology providers. Knowledge built from pooling data across farmer networks also offers a way to learn about best practices, and to improve productivity. » More Info

Development and standardization of textured pureed foods for the elderly population

Grantees: Dr. Christine Moresoli, Dr. Lisa Duizer, Dr. Heather Keller Description: Dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing, is a common condition within the older adult population. Nearly half of Canadian long term care (LTC) residents are prescribed diets with modified textures, where their food will be chopped, minced, pureed or liquefied. Once pureed, the food becomes unidentifiable and its taste and smell can become distinctly different from the original meal. This change in sensory experience may lead to reduced consumption and malnutrition. » More Info

Development of easy-to-prepare pulse-based meals for consumption by office workers to combat the negative health consequences of a sedentary work environment

Grantees: Dr. Phil Chilibeck, Dr. Gordon Zello, Dr. Shannon Hood-Niefer Description: The project will involve the development of approximately seven “pulse-based” lunches/snacks, which are designed to be easy to prepare (i.e. “out of the package”) for people in a typical busy office work environment. Pulses include non-oil legumes such as lentils, chickpeas, beans, and peas, which are a major component of the Canadian agricultural industry. These meals/snacks will be developed and tested for consumer satisfaction (i.e. by testing taste, texture, aroma, etc.) through the Saskatchewan Food Industry Development Centre Inc. » More Info

Nutrition in Disguise: Improving the nutritional quality of foods for older adults

Grantees: Dr. Heather Keller, Dr. Liza Duizer, Dr. Alison Duncan Description: The overall goal of this research is to develop food recipes that are rich in vitamins, minerals and other food components known to support the physical and mental health of older adults. A variety of enhanced food recipes will be initially designed for older adults living in residences with applicability to pre-frail and frail older adults living in the community. It is hypothesized that the nutrient density and anti-oxidant potential of menus used in residential environments can be improved in a cost-effective manner with the inclusion of several enhanced food recipes designed for this population. » More Info


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