FDSN Seminar Series: Ram Ramakrishna
The Department of Food Science and Nutrition presents its fall 2023 seminar series featuring guest speaker Ram Ramakrishna, cereal scientist and R&D manager at Bay State Milling Company, who will give a presentation on “Innovations and Opportunities in Grain Science to Address Public Health Challenges.” This seminar is open to the public and will take place on Zoom from 12:45–1:45 p.m. on Thursday, September 28.
For the majority of the global population, grains (cereals and legumes) represent the foundation on which the human diet is built. Grains are a staple source of calories and nutrients and are of enormous cultural and economic importance and thereby, vital for food security. Against a backdrop of widespread prevalence and rapidly rising incidence of malnutrition-linked public health challenges, grain-based foods assume even greater significance for the reasons listed above and can offer a tangible means of tackling these challenges. In this context, this presentation will review some key public health challenges arising from imbalances in the human diet. Further, the nutritional aspects of some major grains consumed in the United States will be discussed. In addition, the presentation will also focus on examples of promising innovations in grain science that utilize various approaches like process technologies, product development and varietal development, which could help address and mitigate the challenges outlined above.
Ramnarain “Ram” Ramakrishna is a cereal scientist, currently serving as a research and development manager at Bay State Milling Company in Quincy, MA. At a fundamental level, his interest is in exploring how grains and their products can positively and sustainably impact human health, leveraging cereal chemistry and process technologies to do so.
Ramakrishna completed his doctoral and post-doctoral training in cereal science at North Dakota State University in Fargo, ND. Some of the themes he explored during this time include how secondary metabolites in plants bridge crop stress physiology and human health; how traditional fermentation techniques may be utilized to create functional foods for contemporary health challenges; and how fungi may be used to transform the nutritional value of craft breweries byproduct streams. He holds degrees and certifications in food science and nutrition (M.S., University of Leeds, UK), biotechnology and microbiology (B.S., Bangalore University, India) and food protection (Graduate Certificate, North Dakota State University) as well.
Ramakrishna is an active member of Cereals and Grains Association, Institute of Food Technologists, and Association of Food Scientists and Technologists (India). He is also engaged in science outreach and volunteers with nonprofit organizations that promote STEM literacy in public schools. Outside of work, Ramakrishna is an avid hiker and urban farming enthusiast with an interest in medicinal and traditional food plants.Join Zoom