Partnership to push for behavioral change by increasing nutrition knowledge

The University of Newcastle and Rijk Zwaan Australia's free online Culinary Nutrition course is empowering people to improve their eating patterns by increasing their understanding of the science behind healthy eating. The online course, developed for health, education, and horticultural industry professionals, is now available to all and accessible for free. Led by the University of Newcastle PhD candidate, Accredited Practising Dietitian, and qualified chef, Ms. Roberta Asher, the course combines evidence-based nutrition presentations with practical hands-on culinary activities supported by experts from vegetable seed breeding company, Rij,k Zwaan Australia. 

"We wanted to create an educational tool for health, education and industry professionals that could help them overcome some of the barriers to healthy eating and cooking so they could improve their own health and speak with more confidence to their patients, students, or clients," Ms. Asher said. The unique partnership between the University of Newcastle, the HMRI Food and Nutrition Research Program team, and the vegetable seed breeding company Rijk Zwaan Australia were spurred by the common goal of increasing vegetable intake. Ninety-four percent of Australian adults aren't consuming the recommended amounts of vegetables and fruit, with a huge impact on our long-term health. (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2020/21 National Health Survey) Rijk Zwaan Australia Managing Director and founder of the company's food-focused social initiative, Love My Salad, Steven Roberts, said, "Our aim is to get more vegetables on the menu for all Australians.

We want to help the vegetable industry to understand the culinary and nutritional importance of vegetables, encouraging the whole chain to produce better tasting and healthier vegetables." The course is open for enrolment for anyone to join. Hosted on the Rijk Zwaan's online platform,, participants will spend 1-2 hours per week completing five self-paced modules. Participants can expect in-depth information about nutrients, metabolism, and how the diet can mitigate chronic disease risk, alongside recipes, cooking tips, and access to research and resources. The project is funded by the Australian Commonwealth Department of Industry, Innovation and Science Innovation Connections Project Grant with Rijk Zwaan Australia Pty Ltd.

Enrolments are open: 

For more information:
Rijk Zwaan

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