How the Rowett Institute has been shaping Scotland's diet

  • The Larder
  • 2 July 2013
Rowett Institute

Work focuses on healthier eating and the effects poverty, poor diet and ill-heath

Established in 1913 under the guidance of John Boyd Orr, the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, based in Aberdeen, has been researching and shaping the nation’s diet.

Boyd Orr’s early work demonstrated the links between poverty, poor diet and ill-heath – research which directly led to free milk in schools and underpinned the rationing system implemented during the Second World War. Post-war, pioneering work on animal nutrition led to new practices in livestock production to meet the challenges of increased demand.

In recent years the obesity crisis has seen the institute’s focus return to healthier eating, with part of that strategy being to provide core scientific support to the Food and Health Innovation Service, working with Aberdeenshire companies to improve or develop new products. Examples include Inverurie-based baker JG Ross’ Garioch Oat Bread, the first high-oat flour bread, and Pulsetta’s ground-breaking gluten-free bread.