The American Meat Science Association (AMSA) is pleased to announce, Dr. Frederic Leroy and Dr. Nancy R. Rodriguez will be the featured Keynote speakers in the symposium entitled Meat in the Diet” on Monday, August 3, 2020 during the 66th International Congress of Meat Science and Technology (ICoMST) and the AMSA 73rd Reciprocal Meat Conference (RMC) exclusively virtual meeting. This session will be sponsored by JBS USA Food Company.  This keynote symposium will address improving eating patterns to sustain health and improving food security and nutritional health outcomes for low-income people. The emphasis of this symposium is to create a venue for scientific discussion of how innovative research can be translated to effective policies and practices to improve human health through nutrition- specifically as it applies to inclusion of meat products in a healthy diet.

The featured presentations include:

Meat in dietary policy: The place of meat in dietary policy: an exploration of the animal/plant divide: The virtues of ‘plant-based’ eating are commonly extolled in public and academic discourse, in particular in post-industrial countries and exceedingly so on a global level. Animal source foods, on the other hand, are regularly stigmatized for their alleged link with disease, environmental deterioration, and animal abuse. Although there is a reasonable case for the improvement of animal agriculture, this discourse leads to a binary and counterproductive view of food systems: plants are largely seen as beneficial, animal source foods as intrinsically harmful. We argue that this animal/plant binary and the promotion of civic responsibility to accept it as such are cultural constructs that emerged in the Anglosphere during the 19th century. The divide has been continuously evolving since and is currently deepening due to a global sense of urgency, underpinned by various societal anxieties and normative responses. A symptomatic example is provided by the recent call for a Planetary Health Diet and a Great Food Transformation by the EAT-Lancet Commission and its wider network. Dr. Frédéric Leroy, Professor at Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium will address the consumer and the scientific community sharing insight into behavior toward meat in the diet to help attendees better understand. 

The role of meat in healthy eating patterns: considerations for protein quantity and protein quality: The benefits of higher protein diets for supporting increases in and maintenance of muscle is well established, specifically with regard for sports nutrition, weight management and aging. However, quantity doesn’t always equal quality—and within the framework of diet recommendations, the critical role of protein quality has been lost given the complexity of our food system.  Available science shows that animal-derived proteins  such as meat better support muscle protein synthesis than plant-based proteins due to higher amounts and unique profiles of essential amino acids (EAAs), nutrients which cannot be made by the body and must be provided in the diet.  While the lower quality of plant-based proteins may be overcome by eating more total protein or blending complimentary plant-based proteins to provide all of the EAAs in amounts similar to animal protein there may be unintended consequences in the context of the total diet (e.g., higher total calories, challenges for weight management). Additionally, whether plant-proteins are more sustainable than animal proteins, is not clear particularly when the greater amount of total plant-based proteins needed to offset their lower protein quality is considered. In this session Dr. Nancy Rodriguez, Professor of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Connecticut with joint appointments in the Departments of Kinesiology and Allied Health Sciences, will review recommendations and research specific to protein quantity and quality in the context of meat’s contribution to healthy eating patterns, current trends, sustainability and the planet.

In addition, AMSA has announced that Dr. Andrea Liceaga and Dr. Poulson Joseph will be the featured speakers in the concurrent symposium entitled “Alternative Sources of Protein” on Monday, August 3, 2020 during the 66th International Congress of Meat Science and Technology (ICoMST) and the AMSA 73rd Reciprocal Meat Conference (RMC) virtual meeting. This session will be sponsored by Nestle Purina.

The featured presentations include:

How Can Invasive Fish, an Aztec Plant Seed, and Insects Help Solve the World Food Demand in the Year 2050?: The Food and Agriculture Organization has estimated that in order to feed the world population in 2050, agricultural systems must increase production by at least 50%. With increasing population and increasing worldwide demand for meat and dairy driven by demand in rapidly growing economies, this trend will no doubt continue. Current agricultural practices are not capable of meeting this increasing need, and a re-evaluation of the way in which we grow food, and the types of food we grow, is necessary. Using currently available, under-utilized as well as emerging protein resources can help mitigate some of these challenges faced in modern Agriculture. In this presentation Dr. Andrea Liceaga, Associate Professor at Purdue University, will provide an overview of such applications using three different examples of alternative protein resources including their applications, opportunities, and challenges.

Alternate Proteins: Market Landscape for Perspectives on Product Development: The meat industry is globally witnessing a path of growth, especially with increased demand for meat and poultry in emerging economies. At the same time, several factors are also stimulating interest in the ‘alternate’ sector, where products have been developed to closely offer the eating experience from certain meat products. This rise in flexitarianism offers a variety of choices of alternate proteins and their blends (non-animal and animal derived), offering new product development opportunities in the marketplace. In this session Dr. Poulson Joseph, Director of Protein Innovation at Kalsec, will focus on global trends and market landscape from a review perspective while laying out recent advances in product development in the alternate category.

The 66th ICoMST and AMSA 73rd RMC will be held August 3-6, 2020 online in the virtual format. For more information please visit: or contact Deidrea Mabry 1-800-517-AMSA ext. 12.

Source: AMSA