Nestlé Brings Science to Sub-Saharan Africa to Help Improve Food Challenges

The food giant is offering seminars and more to local universities and research institutes.

2 Min Read
Nestle food scientists work with Sub-Saharan regions
Nestlé scientists are sharing their expertise with local universities and research institutes in Sub-Saharan Africa, covering food technology, nutrition, food safety and quality, project management or artificial intelligence topics.Image courtesy of metamorworks / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Sub-Saharan Africa (areas south of the Sahara) is experiencing economic growth, yet continues to face challenges with access to affordable nutrition, food insecurity, and sustainable food systems.

Strengthening local students' scientific expertise will help build key competencies in food innovation to address such challenges in a holistic and locally relevant way. That's where Nestlé comes in.

Recognizing the important role that education plays in developing future scientists, leaders, and innovators, Nestlé's global R&D organization is strengthening its scientific engagement with local universities and research institutes in Sub-Saharan Africa through its Academic Alliances Initiative.

Through the initiative, Nestlé provides support to local students, as well as key skills, tools and knowledge, plus practical learning opportunities related to food innovation.

Most recently, the company established a series of scientific seminars in collaboration with partner universities in Sub-Saharan Africa. During these lectures, various Nestlé R&D experts share their scientific expertise with students, covering topics such as food technology, nutrition, food safety and quality, project management or artificial intelligence.

The seminars complement students' university studies with the goal of closing the gap between academic work and the application of science in real-life conditions, while considering the complex innovation environment.

"Science and technology are pivotal to addressing local challenges such as the need for affordable nutrition and sustainable food systems," said Céline Worth, R&D program manager for Affordable Nutrition at Nestlé. "This requires local expertise and knowledge, which is why we're committed to supporting students in Sub-Saharan Africa and equipping them with the key skills they need, to develop homegrown solutions adapted to the local context."

Nestlé's academic network in the region includes a research institute and eight well-known universities, located in Senegal, Côte d'Ivoire, Benin, Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa. The food giant also has contacts with additional universities in the region.

Beyond the seminars, Nestlé has research collaborations with universities that enable the exchange of knowledge and expertise, with a particular focus on Master and PhD projects related to affordable nutrition, food security, and sustainability.

Students and academic staff also have access to Nestlé's strong expertise in science and technology, through the company's regional R&D center in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, as well as its global R&D network.

"By actively sharing knowledge with local students and universities, through internships and courses, we can better identify locally relevant solutions that are sustainable and scalable," said Tesfalidet Haile, head of Nestlé's Regional R&D Center for Sub-Saharan Africa.

Nestlé's engagement with universities in Sub-Saharan Africa contributes to the Nestlé needs YOUth initiative, which aims to help 10 million young people around the world access economic opportunities by 2030, through employment and employability, agripreneurship, and entrepreneurship.

About the Author(s)

Powder Bulk Solids Staff

Established in 1983, Powder & Bulk Solids (PBS) serves industries that process, handle, and package dry particulate matter, including the food, chemical, and pharmaceutical markets.

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