Hot Topics and Featured Sessions

Hot Topics and Featured Sessions

The AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo is more than just a conference — it is a prime opportunity to advance your career and grow your network, all in one place. Professionals from all over the world come together online and in-person to share insights and perspectives while building new connections.

Hot Topics and Featured Sessions

Access the Online Meeting Platform

Registered attendees can access the online meeting platform to watch live and on-demand presentations, build personalized schedules, view posters and interact with exhibitors.

Download the 2021 Attendee Guide (.pdf) to learn more about how to watch the livestreams and use meeting features.

The "Breeding and Biotechnology for Improving Content, Nutritional Quality and Functionality of Plant Proteins" and "Personal Care 1 - Skin Care; Personal Care 2 - Hair Care and Cleansing" sessions may registered for à la carte by selecting "Single track" during the registration process.

All other Featured Sessions are only available to full meeting registrants.

Browse Hot Topics and Featured Sessions

Select a Hot Topic or Featured Session to learn more about it.

Breeding and Biotechnology for Improving Content, Nutritional Quality and Functionality of Plant Proteins

Session Chairs: Phil Kerr, Chief Technology Officer, Prairie AquaTech, USA; Long Zou, Senior Project Leader, Bunge, USA; and Rouf Mian, Research Leader and Geneticist, USDA-ARS, USA

Plant-based proteins are trending in the food industry to meet consumers' dietary preference and sustainability pursuit. These sessions highlight research efforts focused on improving the yield, nutritional quality, flavor and functionality of proteins by conventional breeding and advanced biotechnological tools. Presentations from key speakers will be followed by live discussion panels.

These sessions highlight the use of the conventional breeding and advanced biotechnological tools to improve yield, nutritional quality, flavor and protein functionality.

Personal Care 1 - Skin Care; Personal Care 2 - Hair Care and Cleansing
Society of Cosmetic Chemists

Session Chairs: Tony O'Lenick, Principal Consultant, Nascent Technologies, USA; and Hongwei Shen, Manager of Technology, Colgate Palmolive, USA

Sponsored in part by the Society of Cosmetic Chemists (SCC).

Two sessions – one on hair and one on skin – each feature a keynote speaker who will provide an overview and explain the needs for consumer acceptable cosmetic formulations. The keynote will be followed by presentations that highlight innovations in the role of natural oils, the potential for plant-based lipids and describe novel products that provide mild conditioning or cleansing for skin or hair.

Two sessions – one on hair and one on skin – provide a broadly accessible overview of research innovation, opportunities, and needs in the personal care industry.

Teaching and Learning in the Time of COVID-19

Session Chairs: Nuria C. Acevedo, Associate Professor, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Iowa State University, USA; and Tong Wang, Professor, Food Science, The University of Tennessee, USA

Coronavirus rapidly accelerated the adoption of remote teaching and learning. As part of the AOCS Professional Educator Common Interest Group’s (PECIG) commitment to promote excellence in teaching through discussion and exchange of ideas we will feature presentations from key speakers and discussion panels where professional educators and students will share their experience with online teaching and learning. Discussions will be continued in a Midweek Mixer following the meeting.

In presentations and discussion panels professional educators and students will share their experience with online teaching and learning. Discussions will be continued in a Midweek Mixer following the meeting.

Updates on Protein Research in China

Session Chairs: Xiaonan Sui, Professor, Northeast Agricultural University, China; and Keshun Liu, Research Chemist, Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, USA

Researchers from China are at the forefront of innovation in proteins for food and non-food applications. This session will feature developments in processing technologies; research on health and functionality benefits for plant protein-based meat alternatives; fabrication of novel materials from protein sources; and a market overview highlighting opportunities for plant-based protein in China.

Insect Fat - Food Industry and Science Prospective
Cargill

Session Chair: Diliara Iassonova, R&D Development Leader, Cargill Inc, USA

Sponsored in part by Cargill.

Black Soldier Flies have been proclaimed as the ‘next big thing’ in the food industry. Insect fat – which can be up to 60% of the insect biomass - can provide a sustainable oil source for feed, food and industrial applications. Feeding insects with organic waste diverts and upcycles material from landfill. This Hot Topic session features presentations from leading researchers who will highlight the potential and challenges in this field, followed by a panel discussion.

Gene Editing Technology and Advancements in Agriculture

Session Chairs: Tim Ulmasov, Chief Technology Officer, CoverCress Inc., USA

This Hot Topic Session will introduce the tools and potential for CRISPR technology, highlight the next wave of traits primed for modification and tether your work to the realities of the global regulatory and policy environment.

This Hot Topic Session will introduce the tools of CRISPR technology, highlight the next wave of traits primed for modification and tether your work to the realities of the global regulatory and policy environment. Join established and emerging agricultural companies, and US policymakers breaking new ground in establishing novel CRISPR tools as we usher in the next generation of precise and efficient plant genome editing to deliver new traits in oils and fats, proteins, and other co-products.

Animal-free Safety Assessment for Human Health and the Environment

Session Chairs: Carol Treasure, Founder and CEO, XCellR8; and Kirsty-Jo Muddiman, Founder / Owner, Mallard Consulting

The development of animal-free approaches to safety assessment is driven by the need for more human-relevant science along with a global rise in animal welfare concerns. As an industry, we are evolving our technologies to ensure safe products, and to translate these into practical, regulatory-compliant solutions.

In this session, we will explore the latest approaches to animal-free safety assessment for raw materials and product groups relevant for our AOCS community. We will also highlight recent advances in ecotoxicology. We ask what progress can be made in reducing the numbers of animals used for environmental safety testing and what scientific solutions are available to ensure product safety. Are the ethical considerations the same for environmental assessment, compared with human health endpoints, and what does this mean for sectors where animal testing bans are in place?

This session will explore the latest approaches to animal-free safety assessment for raw materials and product groups relevant for our AOCS community.

COVID-19 Infections and Lipid Mediators: A Clinical Perspective

Session Chairs: Charles N. Serhan, PhD, Gelman Professor Harvard Medical School, Director & Distinguished Professor Center Exp. Therapeutics BWH, Brigham & Womens Hospital-Harvard Medical School, USA

Severe COVID-19 is associated with "runaway" inflammation that is driven in part by lipid mediators. Evolving clinical experience with the COVID-19 pandemic highlights potential roles for lipid mediators in the pathogenesis of severe COVID-19. This hot topic session will highlight in the role of lipid mediators in COVID 19 infection from a scientific, clinical and translational medicine perspective.

AOCS Official Methods

Session Chair: Susan Seegers, Bunge Creative Solution Center, USA

This session focuses on procedural and technological updates to current AOCS methods that reflect the changing scientific landscape. Updates from the Technical Committee will also be discussed.

Industry Updates (three sessions)

Industry Updates highlight the latest innovations in products and services of direct relevance to oils, fats, proteins, surfactants, foods and sustainable materials research, development and production. Join us to learn what is new, and what is next, for your organization.

Industry Updates include presentations by Metrohm, CPM Roskamp, Clariant, Oil-Dri Corporateion of America, Amano Enzyme and many others.