Head of the ITS Agri-Food and Biotechnology Research Center, Dr. rer. nat. Ir. Maya Shovitri MSi
ITS Campus, ITS News – Responding to the targets on the 2020-2024 National Medium-Term Development Plan (RPJMN) on increasing quantity and quality of food and medicine for public welfare by research-based, Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember (ITS) established Agri-Food and Biotechnology Research Center. Once inaugurated as of January 2020, this research center is expected to improve and enlarge ITS role in research fields related to food and medicine durability.
Head of the ITS Agri-Food and Biotechnology Research Center, Dr. rer. nat. Ir. Maya Shovitri MSi revealed that starting this year 2020, the durability and industry of food and medicine became one of the issues being challenged. “Because of its importance to the primary needs of Indonesian people,” she said.
Maya said this research center is the realization of expectations of food and medicine needs that can be fulfilled internally without relying on trade interests. It is hoped that this research center is expected to produce technology that can improve the quantity and quality of food and medicine for the fulfillment of Indonesia’s internal needs without relying on important needs, as well as increasing export resources as a source of foreign exchange.
Maya explained that in this research center, ITS which is an institution of educational, research and community service based on science, technology, and art, can be involved in various research topics. “Among them are improving the biotechnology applications to improve product quality, new food and medicine processing technology, sub-optimal environmental engineering technology, and agricultural mechanization technology.” said the Biology Department lecturer.
As one of the first steps, this new research center will hold a Focussed Group Discussion (FGD) with the Biotechnology Department of Chulalongkorn University, Thailand and several colleagues from the department and industry related to food and biotechnology. “To be discussed, this research center will also continue to hold partners from outside ITS at regional, national and international levels to formulate and realize potential research topics to be conducted jointly,” she said.
Laboratories that will contribute are the Laboratory of Biotechnology, Zoology, Botany, and Microbiology in the ITS Biology Department, the Biotechnology Laboratory at Chulalongkorn University, Thailand, and the Biology Engineering Laboratory at the University of Korea.
Sago plant tissue culture plantlets (Metroxylon sagoo. Rotb.) created by ITS Biology Department to reproduce plants of the same quality
Regarding who can join this new research center activities, Maya explained, the focus of food development in the research center that she led is not only in the field of technology and science-based research, but also open for the scope of other studies such as art and social fields. “In art, for example, associates who are members can contribute to the design of packaging products itself,” she added.
Therefore, the purpose of establishing this research center is to unite research related to agri-food and biotechnology from various departments in ITS into a superior product. “To facilitate the coordination and synchronization of research themes,” she concluded.
For the future of ITS Agri-Food and Biotechnology Research Center, Maya believes that the cooperation and commitment of researchers from all scientific lines at ITS will greatly contribute to the realization of the goals of the research center’s establishment.
In this case, Maya also revealed that reputable publications of national and international were one of the parameters. “The output will have great progressive and aggressive impacts on national and international recognition of ITS as a leading educational and research institution that contributes to the improvement of community welfare,” she said. (mia/gayatri/ITS Public Relation)
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