As we expand Food Frontiers and garner more attention, we have received a variety of good questions. One person (thanks, Greg Laden) asked about our process and how our posts are written.
Food Frontiers was started at the specific request of Mehmood Khan, our chief scientific officer. We have been putting an increased focus on R&D, and Mehmood has built what we think is a rather formidable team. One of the team’s requests was more communications support – they really wanted to share what they are working on. So he thought, why not a blog?
Food Frontiers is an outlet for the R&D team to talk about the work they are doing. They know that not everyone will agree with everything they write and, as we have seen, they will get some criticism. They tell me that it’s all part of the scientific process and they are happy to engage.
As clearly highlighted in my bio, I am a member of the communications team and one part of my job is helping manage this blog. I work with colleagues on our digital and social media team on this project and I support the R&D team on a variety of their communication activities – including this blog. Sometimes I post quick updates, while other times the R&D team will submit in-depth posts on a food science topic or about an event they are attending.
The process when I write a post is pretty straightforward. I write it, cross check for accuracy, and usually let my boss or co-worker proofread (my grammar and spelling always needs a second look).
The R&D team’s goal is to highlight their work, note recently released scientific papers, and provide insight into important scientific trends and events. For example, George Mensah, a leading cardiologist, told me in a meeting that he really wanted to post something on both American Heart Month and World Hypertension Day. One of his primary areas of research is the role of diet and nutrition on heart health and he had messages that he wanted to share via this blog so he wrote posts for each of those events. You will also see that the R&D team likes to send notes from the field – for example, Derek recently wrote a blog post from the Global Health Council, and the pre-meeting for the International Conference on Obesity.
As many of you are aware, because we are a public company, our legal team does have to review certain posts. So far this has been a quick review process that has not led to any significant edits. Most importantly, once legal reviews, it goes back to the original author for final approval. If the author believes any edit from legal compromises the value of the blog entry, our policy is to not post it.
I hope I’ve answered the question about our approach to the blog and how it works. We know there is always room for improvement, and we’d love to hear from our readers: Do you have any recommendations in terms of our process to make this as informative and engaging as possible? We look forward to hearing from you.