The aim of the symposium was to highlight key research opportunities in both the countries and to provide the foundation for future collaborations. The workshop was focused on "Functional Foods: Challenges and Opportunities". Prof. Muthupandian Ashokkumar (PI, The University of Melbourne) gave the welcome note and introduced the SPARC program to the audience. Prof. Muthupandian also discussed the opportunities for future research collaborations with India. Dr. Gregory J. O. Martin (co-PI, The University of Melbourne) chaired the overall session.
Prof. Hari Niwas Mishra (PI, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur) was the keynote speaker. He talked about the concept of Functional food and Beverages, their technology of formulation, challenges in food product development, and novel food products developed at IIT KGP in Food Chemistry and Technology laboratory. Professor Ramkrishna Sen, Head of the Department of Biotechnology, co-PI, IIT Kharagpur talked about the extraction of EPS from bacteria and their application in food products. Prof. Sen also gave his ideas on the algal extraction and functional food development opportunities with algae.
Faculty and researchers from IIT Kharagpur, UoM, and RMIT were the presenters at the workshop which was attended by faculty and research students from IIT Kharagpur, IIT Kanpur, IIT Madras, IISER Tirupati, UoM, RMIT.