Webinar on Food and Cultures


Dr. Elise Mognard, Programme Director for Postgraduate in Food Studies at Taylor’s University, has been invited to contribute to the webinar "Food and Culture" organised by SEAMEO-RECFON. Prof. Muchtaruddin Mansyuran, Director of SEAMEO-RECFON, introduced the webinar, part of the yearlong celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the organisation, “Forging Initiatives on Food and Nutrition Education amidst Challenging Situations”. Founded in 1964, SEAMEO TROPMED Regional Centre for Community Nutrition was transformed into the Regional Centre for Food and Nutrition in 2011.


It is one among the 24 SEAMEO Centers located throughout SEA region. In collaboration with the Nutrition Department under Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Indonesia, the center has introduced the concepts of and methods in anthropology into the curriculum of master program in nutrition since the late 1990s through the course titled "Introduction of Nutritional Anthropology". Thus, this webinar aimed to stimulate interdisciplinary discussion on the interactions between food cultures and transformations of societies to enlighten todays modern diets from the perspectives of history and sociology.


From a socio-historical perspective, Mr. Fazly Rahman from Padjadjaran University, Indonesia, has presented how the Dutch colonisation and dietary recommendations since the Independence have shaped the food values in Indonesia. Dr. Elise Mognard shared her interdisciplinary experience between nutrition & epidemiology on one hand and sociology and anthropology of food on the other hand. Her presentation was grounded on the Asian Food Barometer and Socio-Cultural and Economic Research in Protein Transition in SE Asia: Focus on Malaysia and Indonesia (SCRiPT) based on which researchers from SEAMEO-RECFON and Taylor’s University, Chair and IRP-CNRS “Food Cultures and Health” are building a fruitful interdisciplinary dialogue.


A rich 45-minute session of questions and answers, moderated by Dr. Judhia Februhartanty from SEAMEO-RECFON, concluded the 2-hour webinar. The webinar involved 160 participants from the Asian region including Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, and the Philippines. To date, the recording available on YouTube counts 725 views.