Berry Health Symposium in June to explore research

05/12/2011 02:00:00 PM
Cynthia David

About 30 researchers from around the country and around the world will gather in Westlake Village, Calif., June 27-29 to share the latest research on the health benefits of berries with fellow professionals and berry aficionados.

The two-day Berry Health Symposium, held every two years since 2005, offers sessions on the hottest topics, from berries and brain aging to cancer, metabolism, cardiovascular health, breast cancer, diabetes and, new this year, stomach health.

“It may sound awful, but there’s information coming out showing a lot of your immune ability is in your gut,” said conference director Cat McKenzie, marketing director for the Corvallis-based Oregon Raspberry and Blackberry Commission.

McKenzie hopes for 200-300 participants, and said the symposium offers nutritionists and anybody in the food industry a fantastic opportunity to interact with scientists and learn about the health messages associated with berries.

Along with the high-end research, nonscientists are invited to a new one-day session called What Berry Health Means for You.

“It’s for the layperson, someone in a small or large company who wants a great takeaway message that they can put into practice right away,” McKenzie said.

She said participants will learn the meaning of the latest scientific buzzwords such as NF-kappa B (which is associated with DNA), get the latest on food labeling from an FDA spokesman and a lawyer who specializes in food safety, and hear about the latest research trends.

Representatives from berry boards also will be on hand that day to discuss how small and large organizations alike can market the berry health message.

A tour of berry fields in the Oxnard area and a winery dinner will round out the symposium.

For more details, visit www.berryhealth.org.



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