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Queens Anniversary Prizes 2015

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Professor Keith I Tomlins

Professor of Food Science
BSc. (Hons), M.Phil., Ph.D.
Food & Markets Department
Natural Resources Institute

Biography

2012 to date
Professor of Food Science, Natural Resources Institute, University of Greenwich
Food Science, food safety and quality management (post-harvest), consumer and sensory analysis, Food Management and Marketing Group. Responsible for managing and undertaking research, consultancy and teaching work internationally.

2005 to 2012
Reader in Food Safety and Quality, Natural Resources Institute, University of Greenwich
Food safety and quality management (post-harvest), consumer and sensory analysis, Food Management and Marketing Group. Responsible for managing and undertaking research, consultancy and teaching work internationally.

1996 to 2005
Principal Scientist III, Natural Resources Institute, University of Greenwich
Natural products food scientist (post-harvest) and consumer and sensory analysis specialist, Post-Harvest Horticulture Group. Responsible for managing and undertaking research, advisory and teaching work on the processing and analysis of beverages and root crops.

1991 to 1996
Higher Scientific Officer, Natural Resources Institute
Food Scientist, beverage crops and sensory analysis specialist, Beverage Crops Section. Responsible for managing and undertaking research, advisory and training work on the processing and analysis of beverages.

1982 to 1991
Scientific Officer, Natural Resources Institute
Food Scientist, Mycotoxins, beverage crops and sensory analysis. Responsible for undertaking research, advisory and training work on the processing and analysis of foods and feeds.

Research/Scholarly Interests

Professor Keith Tomlins has been working with the Natural Resources Institute (and its predecessors) since 1982 and joined the University of Greenwich in 1996.

Over 25 years' experience in international project management, research and consultancy. He is leader of the Natural Resources Institute Programme for Root and Tuber Crops in Development. He has expertise in post-harvest aspects of agricultural commodities. Specialist in sensory evaluation and consumer acceptability, root and tuber crops and street vended foods (including traditional foods). Expert witness in cargo inspection and warehouse management. Experience in over 30 countries in Africa, Caribbean, Pacific, Asia, Europe and North America during more than 150 short- and long-term assignments. Author of 100 publications including 42 in international peer-reviewed papers and two books. His recent inaugural lecture was on the topic of 'Let Them Eat Cake: Food Quality and Acceptance in Africa' (http://www2.gre.ac.uk/about/news/articles/2013/a2627) and the lecture can be viewed at www.youtube.com/watch?v=zcoSOKNUiIM

Member of the University of Greenwich Research Ethics Committee (Faculty and University levels)

PhD Supervision:
Two current students and two completions
External Examiner – two students (University of Kent, University of Queensland)
Internal Examiner – two students

Current and Previous Funded Research Projects

Leading and have recently led the following projects

Contributed to wining research projects (singly and jointly) valued at £20 million, leading projects valued at £6.8million. Funding from the EU, HarvestPlus, BMGF, and Which?

Root and Tuber Crops

EU FP7 GRATITUDE (Gains from Losses of Root and Tuber Crops) with partners in Ghana, Nigeria, Thailand, Vietnam, the UK, the Netherlands and Portugal (http://www.fp7-gratitude.eu/)

EU Food Security Thematic Programme Cassava Growth Markets (Improving the livelihoods of smallholder cassava farmers through better access to growth markets) with partners and associates in Ghana, Nigeria, Tanzania, Malawi, Uganda, India and the UK (http://cassavagmarkets.nri.org/)

EU African Caribbean and Pacific Science and Technology Programme Tropical Root Crops (Science and technology for enhancing the contribution of Tropical Root Crops to development in ACP countries) with partners in Nigeria, Uganda, Zambia, Caribbean, Fiji and Papua New Guinea and globally the International Society for Tropical Root Crops (http://projects.nri.org/tropicalroots/)

Consumer Acceptance

Harvestplus. Various project on consumer acceptance of root and tuber crops, beans and maize (www.harvestplus.org)

Workpackage leader (WP5 on Consumer Acceptance) for EU FP7 AFTER (African Food Tradition Revisited by Research) with partners in France, Senegal, Benin, Ghana, Cameroon, Madagascar, Egypt and Portugal). The lead organisation is Cirad (La recherche agronomique pour le développement) (http://www.after-fp7.eu/en)

Which? Consumer Association

Street Vended Foods

Led a number of DFID funded projects on improving the safety of street vended foods in Africa and Asia. The projects also sought to empower street vendors and consumers

(http://www.nri.org/component/content/article/76-project-websites/food-and-markets/489-street-foods-and-informally-vended-food-in-africa, http://www.nri.org/component/content/article/73-project-websites/food-and-markets/street-foods-in-africa/493-project-4-india-ghana-zambia-and-zimbabwe)

Selected Publications

Books
  • Ray, R.C.and Tomlins, K. I. (2010) Sweet Potato: Post Harvest Aspects in Food, Feed and Industry, Nova Science Publishers, Inc. New York, 316pp, ISBN978-1-60876-343-6
  • Tomlins, K., Johnson, P-N. T. and Tortoe, C. (2005) Street-catering: A guide for Environmental Health Officers, NGO's, Street food vendors and Food Caterers, col-DB Publishers, Accra, Ghana, 30pp, ISBN: 9900-0-3399-0
  • Bainbridge, Z., Tomlins, K., Wellings, K. and Westby, A. (1996) Methods for assessing the quality characteristics of non-grain starch staples: Part 1 to 4, Natural Resources Institute: Chatham. ISBN: 0-85954-400-1. 215pp.

Recent Conference Presentations

  • Keith Tomlins, Manuela Pintado, Aurelie Bechoff, Wisdom Amoa-Awua, Isabel Franco, Maria João Monteiro, Patrica Silva, Margaret Owusu, Ben Bennett, Mary Obodai, Charlotte Oduro-Yeboah, George Anyebuno, Charles Tortoe, Theophilus Annan, Hayford Ofori, Zahra Saleh, M, Mady Cissé, Geneviève Fliedel, Anne-Laure Declemy, Nicolas Ayessou, Noel Akissoe, Cheikh Touré, Joseph Hounhouigan, Zahra.Ahmed, Habiba Hassan-Wassef, Danielle Rakoto, Robert Ndjouenkeu and Dominique Pallet (2012) Acceptance of traditional African foods by African and non-African consumers, European Federation of Food Science and Technology 2012 Conference, Montpellier, France, 21-23 November 2012
  • Coote, C., Tomlins, K., Massingue, J., Okwadi, J. and Westby, A. (2011) Understanding Consumer Decision making to Assist Sustainable Marketing of Vitamin A–Rich Sweet Potato in Mozambique and Uganda, 2020 Conference Note 2. IFPRI 2020 Vision International Conference, Leveraging Agriculture for Improving Nutrition and Health, New Delhi, India, February 10–12, 2011
  • Bechoff, A., Tomlins, K., Dhuique-Mayer, C., Owori, C., Menya, G., Dufour, D., Dove, R., Marouze, C., Dornier, M., Boulanger, R. & Westby, A. (2010) Effect of processing on carotenoid losses in orange-fleshed sweet potato: from the field to the fork. 11th Triennial Symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops – Africa Branch (ISTRC-AB), "Root Crops in Africa and the Challenges of Globalization and Climate Change", Hotel Memling, Kinshasa, DRC, 4-8 October (oral).
  • Bechoff, A. Tomlins, K., Dhuique-Mayer, C. and Westby, A. Understanding carotenoid losses after drying and storage of orange-fleshed sweetpotato (Ipomea batata). 15th Triennial Symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops – (ISTRC), "Tropical Roots and Tubers in a Changing Climate: A convenient opportunity for the World", CIP, Lima, Peru, 2-6 November. (oral)
  • Bechoff, A., Tomlins, K.I. , Dhuique-Mayer, C. , Poulaert, M., Menya G. and Westby A. (2010) Retention of provitamin A carotenoids and their bioavailability in porridges and chapattis made from orange-fleshed sweet potato flour, 11th Symposium of the ISTRC-AB, 4 – 8 October 10, Kinshasa, DRC.
  • J.V. Meenakshi, A. Banerji, Victor Manyong, Keith Tomlins, Priscilla Hamukwala, Rodah Zulu, and Catherine Mungoma (2010) Consumer Acceptance of Biofortified Maize in Rural Zambia: Does Color Matter?, First Global Conference on Biofortification, Nov 9-11, 2010, Washington D.C
  • Tomlins, K., Massingue, J., Dove, R., Barroso, A., Luis Serra, V., Bechoff, A, Ball, A. M. and Westby, A. (2009) Consumer acceptance of bread containing biofortified orange fleshed sweet potato, 15th Triennial Symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops – (ISTRC), "Tropical Roots and Tubers in a Changing Climate: a Critical Opportunity for the World.," November 2-6, 2009, in Lima, Peru. International Potato Center
  • Tomlins, K., Ndunguru, G, Stambul, K., Joshua, N., Ngendello, T., Rwiza, E., Amour, R., Ramadhani, B., Kapande, A. and Westby, A. (2006) Sensory evaluation and consumer acceptability of pale fleshed and orange fleshed sweetpotato, Presented at the 14th triennial Symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops, 20-26 November 2006, Trivandrum, India.
  • Tomlins, K. I., Roy, J., Zulu, R., Chibanda, D., Gadaga, H., Johnson, P. N. T. and Graffham, A. J. (2006) Empowerment through work – informal and street food vendors. The millennium development goals: issues for UK unions, TUC, Congress House, Great Russell Street, London, 27 February 2006, 17pp.
  • Tomlins, K., Graffham, G., Zulu, R., Chibanda, D., Johnson, P. N. T. and Roy, J. (2005) Improving the Livelihoods of Street and Informal Food Vendors in Africa and Asia (Projects R7403, R8270, R8272 & R8433), poster presented at the DFID Regional Agricultural Research and Dissemination Workshop in Harare, Zimbabwe from 27-29 September 2005.
  • Carter, R. M., Yan, Y., Tomlins, K. and Coker, R. D. (2004) Low-cost imaging system for the characterisation and authentication of granular food products, In. Advanced sensors and instrumentation systems for the food and beverage industries, presented at the Institute of Physics, 15 December 2004, London.
  • Sanni, L., Onihilo, M., Oyewole, O.B., Tomlins, K. and Westby, A. (2004) Studies into the production and qualities of cassava grits (Tapioca) in Nigeria. Poster presented at Sixth International Scientific Meeting of the Cassava Biotechnology Network, March 8-14, Cali, Colombia.
  • Westby, A. van Oirschot, Q., Tomlins, K., Ndunguru, G., Ngendello, T., Sanni, L., Pessey, D. and Oyewole, O. (2004) Bridging the gap between post-harvest technology development and commercialization of root and tuber crops in Africa. Invited thematic paper at the ISTRC-Africa Branch Triennial Symposium, 31 October – 5 November 2004, Mombasa, Kenya.
  • Westby, A., van Oirschot, Q., Tomlins, K., Graffham, A., White, J., Gallat, S., Collinson, C., Ndunguru, G., Ngendello, T., Kapinga, R., Sanni, L., Ayinde, I., Mlingi, N., Adebayo, K., Johnson, P., Oyewole, O., Jumah, A. (2004) Innovative approaches for cassava research and development: post-harvest in Africa. Invited paper presented at the Sixth International Scientific Meeting of the Cassava Biotechnology Network, March 8-14, Cali, Colombia.
  • Sanni, L. O., Oyewole, O. B., Oluwakayode, F. A., Dioeolu, A. O., Adebayo, K., Ayinde, I. A. White, J. L., Tomlins, K. and Westby, A. (2003). Effect of smoking, oven and locally fabricated rotary drying on the qualities of fufu. Paper presented at the FoodAfrica initiative held at the Palais du Congress, Yaoundé, Cameroon, May, 2003.
  • Sanni, L. O., Onitilo, M., Oyewole, O. B., Dipeolu, A. O., Adebayo, K., Ayinde, I. A., Tomlins, K. and Westby, A. (2003). Effects of cassava varieties and processing methods on the qualities of tapioca in Southwest Nigeria Paper presented at the Foodafrica initiative held at the Palais du Congress, Yaoundé, Cameroon, May 2003.
  • Sanni, L. O., Oyewole, O. B., Akinyemi, A. O., Bankole, M. O., Dipeolu, A. O. Adebayo, K., Ayinde, I. A., White, J. L., Tomlins, K. and Westby, A (2003). Physicochemical, microbial, and sensory qualities of dried fufu from various fufu processors in Southwest Nigeria Proceedings of the 1st Nigerian Drying Symposium 1, 77-84 at the Faculty of Engineering, University of Portharcourt, Nigeria, October 2003 (Edited by Kuye et al., 2003).
  • Tomlins, K. I., Rwiza, E., Nyango, A., Amour, R., Ngendello, T., Kapinga, R. and Rees, D. (2003) Consumer and sensory orientated approach to the selection of sweetpotato cultivars in East Africa, poster presented at the 5th Pangborn Sensory Science Symposium, July 20 – 24, 2003, Boston, USA
  • Tomlins, K. I., van Oirschot, Q. E. A., Rwiza, E., Amour, R., Ngendello, T., Kapinga, R., Rees, D. and Westby, A. (2007) Application of consumer preference and sensory evaluation to sweetpotato research in East Africa. Presented at the 13th triennial Symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops, 8-15 November 2003, Arusha, Tanzania, 435-444.
  • van Oirschot, Q., Ngendello, T., Rwiza, E., Amour, R., Tomlins, K., Rees, D. and Westby, A. (2003) The potential for storage of fresh sweetpotato under tropical conditions: evaluation of physiological changes and quality aspects. Presented at the 13th triennial Symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops, 8-15 November 2003, Arusha, Tanzania, 423-434.
  • Westby, A., van Oirschot, Q., Tomlins, K., Ndunguru, G., Ngendello, T., Kapinga, R., Sanni, L.O. and Oyewole, O. (2003) Root and tuber crop post-harvest systems: lessons learned and future interventions to contribute to food security and poverty alleviation. Thematic invited paper presented at the 13th Triennial Symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops, Arusha, Tanzania, November 2003.
  • Oyewole, O.B., Sanni, L.O., Dipeolu, A.O., Adebayo, K., Ayinde, I.A., White, J.L., Tomlins, K.I. and Westby, A. (2001). Factors influencing the quality of Nigerian fufu. Poster presented at the 8th Triennial Symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops-Africa Branch. 12-16 November 2001, 182 – 184.
  • Oyewole, O.B., Sanni, L. O., Dipeolu, A. O., Adebayo, K., Ayinde, I. A., Pearce, D. M., White, J. L., Tomlins, K. and Westby, A. (2001) Improved processing technology for the fermentation of cassava fufu. Paper presented at the 11th World Congress of Food Science and Technology, Seoul, South Korea.
  • Tomlins, K. I., Johnson, P. N. T. and Myhara, B. (2001). Improving street food vending in Accra: Problems and prospects, In: Food safety in crop post harvest systems, Proceedings of an international workshop sponsored by the crop post harvest programme of the United Kingdom Department for International Development, Harare, Zimbabwe, 20-21 September 2001, Eds, Sibanda, T. and Hindmarsh, P, 30-33.
  • Tomlins, K. I. (2001). Heavy metals, pesticides and mycotoxins in street-vended foods, In: Enhancing the food security of the peri-urban and urban poor through improvements to the quality, safety and economics of street-vended foods, Report on workshop for stakeholders, policy makers and regulators on street food vending in Accra, 25 – 26 September 2000, Eds, Johnson, P. N. T. and Yawson, R. M, Food Research Institute, Box M20, Accra, Ghana, pp 20 – 23.
  • Kapinga, R. E., Rees, D, Westby, W., Ndunguru, G. T., Rwiza, E., Tomlins, K. I., Stathers, T., Jeremiah, S. and Mbilinyi, L. (2000). Increasing the contribution of sweetpotato to sustainable rural livelihoods in Tanzania, 12th symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops, Tsukuba, Japan, 10-16 September 2000.
  • Myhara, M., Tomlins, K. I., Johnson, P. N., Obeng-Asiedu, P. and Greenhalgh, P. (2000). Implementation of quality management systems to control food safety hazards of street-vended foods in Ghana, pp 1. Poster presented at a forum organised by Food Control and Georgetown Center for Food and Nutrition Policy, December 4 – 5, 2000, Georgetown University, Washington DC, USA.
  • Ndunguru, G. T., Westby, A., Gidamis, A., Tomlins, K. I. and Rwiza, E. (2000). Losses in sweetpotato quality during post-harvest handling in Tanzania, 5th Triennial Congress of the African Potato Association: Potatoes for poverty Alleviation, 29 May to 2 June 2000, Kampala, Uganda, 477-479.
  • Van Oirschot, Q. E. A, Rees, D., Tomlins, K. I. and Aked, J. (2000). Cultivar variation of sweetpotatoes in susceptibility to damage, In. Potential of root crops for food and industrial resources, 12th symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops, Tsukuba, Japan, 10-16 September 2000, 345-348.
  • Van Oirschot, Q. E. A, Ngendello, T., Amour, R., Rwiza, E., Rees, D., Tomlins, K. I., Jeffries, D., Burnett, D. and Westby, A. (2000). Preliminary observations on the potential for long-term storage of fresh sweetpotatoes under tropical conditions, In. Potential of root crops for food and industrial resources, 12th symposium of the International Society for Tropical Root Crops, Tsukuba, Japan, 10-16 September 2000, 341-344.
  • Rwiza, E., Nyango, M., Munisi, R., Kapinga, R., Tomlins, K. I., Rees, D., Ndengello, T. and Westby. A. (2000). The potential for using trained taste panels for screening sweetpotato varieties: experiences in Tanzania, 5th Triennial Congress of the African Potato Association: Potatoes for poverty Alleviation, 29 May to 2 June 2000, Kampala, Uganda, 521-526.
  • van Oirschot, Q. and Tomlins, K. I. (2000). Is there scope for applying analytical sensory evaluation techniques which translate quantitative perceptions to numerical data to research on development issues? Presented at a conference on Combining Qualitative and Quantitative Methods in Development Research, July 1-2, 2002, Centre for Development Studies, University of Wales.
  • Bradburn, N., Jewers, K., Jones, B. D and Tomlins, K. (1988). Aflatoxin distribution studies on cottonseed products, Proceedings of the Japanese Association of Mycotoxicology, 7th International IUPAC Symposium on Mycotoxins and Phycotoxins, Tokyo, Japan, August 16-19, 1988, 154.
  • Faulks, R. M., Griffiths, N. M., White, M. A. and Tomlins, K. I. (1982). Food group symposium short paper reading meeting, J. Sci. Food Agric. 33, 589.

External Recognition

  • President of the International Society of Tropical Root Crops (www.istrc.org).
  • International Advisory Board Member of the Journal of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Technology (Prof. Chryss F. I. Onwuka, Editor - In – Chief)
  • External consultant for CWA International Ltd (http://www.cwa.uk.com/food_keyp.htm)

Contact Information

Professor Keith I Tomlins

Natural Resources Institute

University of Greenwich

Central Avenue, Chatham Maritime, Kent ME4 4TB, United Kingdom.

Tel: +44 (0)1634 883460

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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