I have spent more than 35 years researching oils and fats. I joined Unilever Research in 1980, coming from Bath University, beginning work in the Speciality Fats section, where I investigated the fractionation of palm oil to produce cocoa butter equivalents. My worked extended to studying the phase behaviour of pure triacylglycerols and to the investigation of DSC as a quality control tool.
After seven years at Colworth, I was seconded to the Loders Croklaan factory in Silvertown, London where I gained experience of quality control, product development and production processes. Returning to Colworth, I worked on partially hydrogenated fats, lauric fats, low calorie fat systems, fat migration, bloom retarding fats, non-temper filling fats and lipid-based moisture barriers.
I have worked on projects for various Unilever companies, focussing principally on chocolate, edible oils, ice cream and spreads. I have been involved with developing methods using pulse NMR, Differential Scanning Calorimetry, microscopy (e.g. cold-stage and temperature gradient) and x-ray diffraction, particularly time-resolved x-ray diffraction combined with scanning calorimetry.
I have various patents and publications, including book chapters. I retired from Unilever at the end of 2009 to consult on fats & oils and products containing them. I am the Immediate Past Chairman of the Society of Chemical Industry’s Lipids Group Committee and am a past board member of the European Federation for Lipid Science and Technology (EFL). I am an associate editor of the Journal of the Science of Food & Agriculture, and a reviewer for many others.