Thursday, October 29, 2020

Processing Division member spotlight on Dr. Usha Thiyam Holländer

Dr. Thiyam-Holländer’s research is centered on the extraction, quantification and isolation of minor components such as phenolic compounds from by-products of edible oil processing. She is also researching the impact of various novel aspects of processing on canola oil and minor components.  Her focus is on plant-based functional foods and nutraceutical ingredients and the impact of innovative technology, isolation and optimization. 

Usha received her Ph.D. from the University of Kiel, Germany and her M.Sc. from IIT-Kharagpur, India.  A more complete description of her professional activities is found on the University of Manitoba’s website at or on her LinkedIn profile.

You can also hear Dr. Thiyam-Holländer discuss the following in this short video.

Dr. Thiyam-Holländer shared the following on her experience “Teaching in the time of Covid”:

My typical day is hard to describe — it is full of surprises and last-minute reminders and clinging on to my Outlook calendar.  I do spend a lot of time preparing online material.  And wading through emails that announce, “We're bringing our demo labs to you”, which is exciting; I am looking forward to a growing library of live experiments, recorded in real-time! So, there are positive advancements resulting from this fully online era.

I began this journey in March by learning how to host a YouTube lecture — of course with some help from my academic family members — while still striving to excel with video editing software and posting recorded lectures.  Now I am using Microsoft365 teams and multiple portals based on the audience (which changes whether you are with ACS, AOCS, etc) — prior to that it was blue jeans and Zoom.

So, one part of my day involves wrangling the number of webinars being offered during Covid. To help with this, I created a 2020 webinar folder portal. I have managed to attend a few live and recorded webinars via ACS, Select Science, FOSS, Thermofisher, Agilent and Phenomenex amongst others. The overwhelming number of messages that started with “Free webinar—register now!” were rewarding in a few instances. Though I am still struggling to find time, I was happy to share so many webinars with students. 

The pedagogical value of using available online webinar material is not as easy, especially from copyright and citation perspectives. For example, if I see a webinar and I instantly like it, and I want to use parts of it for my class (cite it!)—I usually deal with long and painful e-mail threads to get permission to share just a few minutes of clips! One exception I encountered was that I did connect with a Stanford University professor who was more than willing for me to share clips from her webinar. It was very exciting for my students. 

Last month I came across a headline that read, “As September approaches, universities prepare for a fall semester unlike any other” and I was wondering what remote teaching would be like. I am happy that the remotely delivered undergraduate seminar course works well with 26 students. Technology glitches have not overtaken our class time. Though things are busier than expected and the amount of time spent on emails and communication has skyrocketed, it did not limit my productivity too much. Perhaps I should simply be thankful that it is all working well!  However, I do have fears of COVID affecting any of my loved ones, especially my aging parents.  

On the pandemic more generally: 

During the pandemic, scientists have shifted their focus a lot. We are either remaining productive or catching up. So far, I have had the chance to read about women researchers and the challenges faced by us during these times — especially childcare issues and the impact on mental health. I also remembered my own maternity leave, navigating remote work with a baby on my lap and a long list of emails awaiting my reply — it seems many more people around the world have had to embrace these lifestyle shifts. It was not easy for me and is not easy for women in general –- we need to credit women scientists more, given all that they juggle! AOCS’ has clearly been encouraging women in science and I am happy to see this, but I believe we can do more!

I am less concerned about my job than my health and safety — protection means a good chance for survival, which is something someone recently said that really spoke to me. Going back to normal will be different, at least for the time being, so the conversation is about a potential “new normal” to which we will have to adapt. 

Finally, to help cope with the pandemic, fishing is on my to-do list along with exploring the great Canadian outdoors, gardening and learning more about indigenous Canadian nutrition, native Meitei and Naga indigenous food and culture — somewhere down the road. I have also been reflecting on the impact of the mentorship I received at AOCS on my career – it has been invaluable!  Almost 18 years ago, I was very inspired after attending an AOCS annual meeting and highly recommend volunteering for AOCS to our students and young professionals!

On food processing:

Through AOCS’ platform, I am equipped to learn, exchange information and network with knowledgeable colleagues and industry experts. Oilseed processing (raw materials – seed to oil and by-products) and food processing extending to preparing and generating side-streams, grinding and processing grains or coffee beans or even beer is critical to understand today’s nutrition, wellbeing and changing lifestyles.  Recently, I extended my research to explore home cooking practices and efficient commercial and industrial methods impacting the mustard antioxidants. It is a very exciting and interesting area to research as practices are changing and new findings are coming in — I want to discover whether you can cook mustard seed in an InstantPot or if you can use the standard oven at home or conduct a lab-based accelerated solvent extraction! 

Here is the link to our beer study: "Identification of hydroxycinnamic acid derivatives of selected Canadian and foreign commercial beer extracts and determination of their antioxidant properties".

How peer reviewing can help you professionally: an upcoming Midweek Mixer

Monday, November 2 at noon CST (UTC–06/Chicago, USA), moderator Yunbing Tan and panelists Doug Hayes, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Surfactants and Detergents, and Jim Kenar, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the American Oil Chemists' Society will host the Midweek Mixer, "How peer reviewing can help you professionally". You can read more about the Mixer and the hosts below

Why join?

The peer-review process is an important step for improving research paper quality; however, less is known about the standardized review process. This Mixer will provide a platform for attendees to share their reviewing experiences and ask questions about how to get involved, best review practices and more. Other topics that we hope to discuss include how to balance research and reviewing and what could we learn or get from this reviewing experience. This Mixer is designed to be both an informative session on how peer reviewing can enhance your professional development and an opportunity for you to network with peers also interested in journal reviewing.

Join AOCS for a Midweek Mixer hosted by the AOCS Student Common Interest Group (SCIG)

Get to know your hosts:

Mixer moderator

Yunbing Tan is currently a third-year Ph.D. candidate in the Food Biopolymers and Colloids laboratory at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She has a strong academic background in food science with competitive GPAs in both Bachelor's (3.82/4.00) and Master's (3.67/4.00) degrees. Previously, she has done research in several distinctive areas, including evaluation and characterization of emulsion systems and their in-vitro digestion fate, protein hydrolysis and its application in dairy products functional foods. To date, she has published 14 scientific articles in well-respected journals with three of them as the first author. Her work has been with many scholarships and awards during her undergraduate and graduate studies. In the future, she would like to continue research on the application of the INFOGEST method to understand the gastrointestinal fate of various emulsions systems in regard to their lipid digestion properties as well as bioavailability of encapsulated components. Yunbing Tan is the winner of AOCS' Lipid Processing and Biotechnology Division Awards in 2020.

Mixer panelists

Doug Hayes is the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Surfactants and Detergents. He is a Professor of Biosystems Engineering at the University of Tennessee (UT) and also serves as an Adjunct Professor for Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at UT, a Guest Professor at Wuhan Polytechnic University and Jinan University (Guangzhou, China), and a UT-Oak Ridge National Laboratory Joint Faculty member. He received a B.S. and Ph.D. at Iowa State University (1986) and University of Michigan (1991), respectively, both in chemical engineering. He served as a Postdoctoral Research Chemist at the USDA/ARS/NCAUR from 1991 to 1994, and as an Assistant and Associate Professor at UAH (Chemical and Materials Engineering, 1991–1994) before joining UT. He received the Impact Award (2017) and the John J. and Dorothy G. McDow Faculty Excellence Award (2019) from the UT Institute of Agriculture. Doug has over 80 publications in peer-reviewed journals, over 20 book chapters and three co-edited books. His research interests include surfactant self-assembly systems, biobased products, bioplastics and applied enzymology.

A longstanding member of AOCS, Hayes became a reviewer for the Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society (JAOCS) when he was a postdoc at the US Department of Agriculture. He became an Associate Editor (AE) for JAOCS in 1999, an AE for JSD in 2010, and a Senior Associate Editor for JAOCS in 2013. He is also the author of the INFORM magazine article, “How peer reviewing has helped my career” in the April 2019 issue of the magazine. 

Jim Kenar is a research chemist at the US Department of Agriculture–National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research (USDA–NCAUR) in Peoria, Illinois, USA. Jim is an active member of AOCS and currently a senior associate editor for the Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society (JAOCS). He has been the journal’s editor-in-chief since May 2016. Jim’s research interests focus on the modification and utilization of agricultural materials (vegetable oils and polysaccharides) for food and nonfood applications. Jim Kenar joined AOCS in 2000.

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Almond Protein Extractability and Utilization in a Plant-forward World: An upcoming #AOCSWebinar

New plant-forward ingredients are increasingly in demand, creating opportunity for technologies that extract protein.  This webinar will provide attendees an overview of the latest research on protein extraction methods, a better understanding of almond protein qualities and a culinary demonstration by Chef Christine Farkas where she will show almond protein in action. 

Register for this webinar, which will occur on November 19, 2020 at 10 a.m. CST (UTC–06/Chicago, USA).

From this webinar, attendees will gain a better understanding of: 
  • Almond protein nutrition profile, including the fat profile of almonds 
  • Current almond protein technologies and the functional properties of the almond protein powders that can be ideal for solubility and digestibility
  • Present research and processes in protein extraction, including utilizing enzymes to help extract almond protein
  • Practical and functional applications of almond protein powder (defatted almond flour) in two culinary examples 

Meet the presenters

Swati Kalgaonkar, Associate Director, Nutrition Research Program for the Almond Board of California (ABC): Dr. Swati Kalgaonkar’s primary focus is on oversight of ABC-contracted and management nutrition research, public policy analysis and synthesis. Her role at ABC also involves helping to identify research needs and knowledge gaps related to almond health benefits and communicating research results/progress to global audiences.

Guangwei Huang, Associate Director of Food Research & Technology for the Almond Board of California: For the last 18 years, Guangwei has worked at the Almond Board of California (ABC) in various roles, most recently as Associate Director (Food Research & Technology), and previously as Principal Scientist, Senior Technical Manager and Technical Manager. Guangwei manages ABC’s almond quality, safety and processing technology, and co-product utilization research projects, and he conducts trade education events and food professional outreach activities. 

Juliana M.L.N. de Moura Bell, Departments of Food Science and Technology and Biological and Agricultural Engineering, University of California, Davis: Dr. de Moura Bell’s research includes the development and application of environmentally friendly technologies to replace the incumbent technology for extracting and fractionating of major food components such as oil, protein and carbohydrates. Her goal is to develop structure/function-based processes to produce foods that will improve human health, with the translation of these processes into the industrial realm being her work’s ultimate goal. Specifically, she is interested in bio-processing techniques such as enzyme-assisted aqueous extraction, fermentation and less harsh techniques like supercritical and subcritical extractions. 

Chef Christine Farkas, Founder and Chef at IHeartFood Consulting: Christine Farkas is the Chef and Founder of IHeartFood Consulting. Christine is a skilled Food Innovator, Research Chef and Holistic Nutritionist with extensive research and development, culinary and nutrition-driven experience across Canada and the United States. Her work focuses on recipe and product development, hands-on culinary workshops and presentations and trendspotting through local and global travel. Her background includes working with food companies and commodity groups to create innovative food products and menus to nourish and create market growth, sustainably. Much of her work is linked to farmers and the food in which they grow, as well as having a deep connection to ingredient sources.

Access a brand new, exclusive webinar library! Members now have access to presentations spanning 10 interest areas — all on-demand! Join the AOCS community to continue building your knowledge on relevant research and trends, no matter where your career or life takes you. Become a member.

You can also see newly added events on a range of topics, including, "Should you be pre-printing your research?", which will focus on what preprints mean for journals in the long-term.

Upcoming AOCS events for plant protein professionals

Learn about the latest advancements in plant protein science and technology with these upcoming AOCS events:

More Informed: Exploring Pulse Ingredients as an Egg Replacement

Learn more about replacing eggs with pulse ingredients directly from the author of the October INFORM magazine article. Mehmet Tulbek, Ph.D., Director of AGT Foods Research & Development Center, will delve deeper into the emulsification, structure development, foam stabilization, gelation and browning of pulse ingredients. Read more about this webinar and its presenter here.

November 12, 2020 | 10 a.m. CST (UTC–06/Chicago, USA)  | Register for free 

Meet the speaker: Dr. Mehmet C. Tulbek

Dr. Tulbek is the Director of AGT Foods Research & Development Centre in Saskatoon, Canada. He has over 20 years of experience in cereal, pulse and oilseed processing and utilization technologies. Mehmet completed his B.Sc. in Agricultural Engineering with an emphasis in Food Science and Technology at Ankara University, and his M.Sc. in Food Engineering at Istanbul Technical University in Turkey. He then moved to the United States to pursue his Ph.D. in Cereal Science at North Dakota State University in Fargo, ND. Before joining AGT Foods, Mehmet worked at the Northern Crops Institute as the Technical Director and Crop Quality Specialist. At NCI, he led the development of technical, educational and international outreach programs for pulse, oilseed and specialty crops. Mehmet is a sought-after presenter at global industry and academic gatherings, and has authored numerous journal articles, book chapters and proceedings. Mehmet is a member of multiple organizations including AACCI, IFT, AOCS, CIFST, CNS and AAFCO. He currently serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Saskatchewan Department of Food and Bioproduct Sciences and the University of Manitoba Department of Food and Human Nutritional Sciences.

What is INFORM magazine?

INFORM magazine is AOCS' member magazine, which covers the latest developments and critical issues with the fats, oils, proteins, surfactants and related materials. More Informed is a space for magazine readers to delve deeper into topics like new analytical methods and technologies, processing technologies that improve efficiency and sustainability, health and nutrition, formulation science, critical business issues, and more.

Phase Behavior of Concentrated Pea Protein Isolate-Pectin Mixture and their Application

This webinar will focus on a study that sought to develop an alternative method to study phase behaviors of concentrated solutions of pea protein-pectin mixtures by identifying critical phase transition pH values as well as applications of pea protein-pectin complexes. Read more about this webinar and its presenters.

November 20, 2020 | 10 a.m. CST (UTC–06/Chicago, USA)  | Register for free 

Meet the speaker: Dr. Yang Lan

Dr. Lan is a research fellow in the cereal and food science program at North Dakota State University (NDSU). He has published 15 peer-reviewed articles and given more than 12 academic presentations at professional meetings such as the AOCS and IFT annual meetings. Yang has received both a travel grant and the Honored Student Award from AOCS as well as several graduate scholarships from IFT. Yang has been an active member in AOCS’ Protein and Co-Products (PCP) division since 2017 and is a member of the AOCS Student Common Interest Group.

Access a brand new, exclusive webinar library! Members now have access to presentations spanning 10 interest areas — all on-demand! Join the AOCS community to continue building your knowledge on relevant research and trends, no matter where your career or life takes you. Become a member.

You can also see newly added events on a range of topics, including, "Should you be pre-printing your research?", which will focus on what preprints mean for journals in the long-term.

JAOCS Supplemental Issue: Abstracts from the Virtual 2020 AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo

This supplemental issue to the Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society holds the robust collection of research presented at the Virtual 2020 AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo and serves as space to recognize the hard work of these authors. 

Spanning all of AOCS’ interest areas, this issue is another venue to continue the conversations that go on during an annual meeting. It is also a starting point for readers to connect with authors and discuss their findings. 

Read on for abstracts from industry icons like N.A. Michael Eskin with “A Long Lipid Voyage: A Half Century of Research” and emerging scientists like Lirong Xu with “Effect of Oil Types and Frying Cycles on Flavor Compounds of French Fries during Deep-Frying.”

You can still register for the online annual meeting for free and gain access to these abstracts’ presentations.

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

AOCS Student e-Poster Pitch Competition: New to the 2021 AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo

Awards | How to submit

Contributing to the endeavor of supporting students in the lipid science and oil technology fields, AOCS launches a Society-wide Student e-Poster Pitch Competition at the 2021 AOCS annual meeting

This new competition is designed to give student researchers an opportunity to highlight their achievements, demonstrate their ability in scientific presentations, and receive important feedback and mentoring from industry leaders. 

AOCS invites all student researchers to submit their e-poster abstract within any one of ten interest areas (Divisions):

  • Analytical
  • Biotechnology
  • Edible Applications Technology
  • Health and Nutrition
  • Industrial Oil Products
  • Lipid Oxidation and Quality
  • Phospholipid
  • Processing
  • Protein and Co-Products
  • Surfactants and Detergents

E-posters will be presented as a single page PDF with static text and images. Up to five finalists will be selected from each interest area to give a 5-minute oral presentation during the AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo. At the conclusion of each Division’s oral competition session, the viewing audience will be encouraged to vote for their favorite pitch!

All accepted poster abstracts, PDFs and live presentations will be available to all 2021 AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo attendees and the general public on the AOCS website(s).

Awards (per Division):

First place winners receive:
  • US $200 cash prize
  • Recognition certificate
  • 2022 AOCS student membership
  • Recognition in the AOCS Newsletter
  • Recognition in the applicable Division Newsletter

Second place winners receive:

  • US $100 cash prize
  • Recognition certificate
  • Recognition in the applicable Division Newsletter

This competition is made possible in part by the AOCS Foundation, which is dedicated to fostering programs that recognize student accomplishments.

How to submit 

Detailed instructions regarding abstract submission, selection criteria and more are available in the Guidelines & CadmiumCD User Guide (PDF). 

Students interested in participating in the e-poster pitch competition should submit a poster abstract by January 15, 2021. 

Submit today


If you have questions about the AOCS Student e-Poster Pitch Competition, please contact AOCS staff at or +1 217-693-4831.

Friday, October 23, 2020

Soybean 360: Agro Processing in Sub-Saharan Africa, an upcoming symposium

Discover the latest innovations in soybean processing technology in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and network with both researchers and industry experts from around the globe. Presenters will offer pragmatic market views and leading research on technologies to enhance efficiencies, improve nutrition and optimize market opportunities. Although presenters consider the context of SSA, the techniques and practices are applicable for processors in all growing economies. 

Symposium presentations will be offered live and online from 8-11 a.m. CST (UTC-06/Chicago, USA) on November 30–December 11, 2020. This format allows you to integrate your participation in the symposium into your daily routine!

Learn more about this event and how to register.

Cooperating organizations include the Soybean Innovation Lab, IFT - Institute of Food Technologists, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Makerere University and National Agricultural Research Organisation - NARO Uganda.