Walailak University Joins Forces with Murdoch University to Promote Food Security, Secure Food for a Sustainable Future

Walailak University (WU) recently welcomed two renowned scientists from Australia: Pro Vice-Chancellor Peter Davies and Professor Tony O’Donnell from Murdoch University (MU), who sought potential collaboration with WU. The two scientists represent MU Food Futures Institute, an organization working to enhance the accessibility and availability of sufficient, safe, sustainability-produced, and nutritious food.

During their visit from January 30 – 31, the two scientists visited Walailak Botanic Park, Akkhraratchakumari Veterinary College (AVC), School of Agricultural Technology and Food Industry (SAF), and paid a courtesy call to President Professor Dr. Sombat Thamrongthanyawong at the Honor Hall.

WU and MU representatives gathered at the Chorpradu Chamber to discuss shared interests and explore potential collaboration between the two institutions. On this occasion, Professor Tony O’Donnell provided insights into MU’s ongoing research such as working with the Australian government and organizations to create bioplastics that biodegrade within a few days when exposed to seawater, to bioengineer insects capable of digesting plastics, and the implemention of sustainable farming systems to sustain food for future generations. 

He also emphasized the importance of internationalization to build collaboration in teaching and research, facilitate staff and student exchange, and address the international challenges of biosecurity, green agriculture, and food security.

Associate Professor Dr. Surin Maisrikrod, Vice President of WU, said that there are a lot of areas for potential collaboration between WU and MU. “And of course, this is a very important area not just for Australia, not just for Thailand. When it comes to food security, it is for everybody and it will benefit a lot of people.”  

Dr. Surin suggested organizing a webinar series on this issue, which WU Center for International Affairs will help facilitate, and try to “translate research into practical use”.

Clinical Professor Dr. Suvichai Rojanasathien, Dean of AVC, proposed a two-week exchange program for MU students to gain practical experience about wildlife and poultry in Thailand's South, mirroring the successful model the college established with James Cook University in recent years. 

At the meeting at SAF, Dean Worawan Panpipat proposed the exchange of visiting professors and the opportunity for SAF students to gain practical training in food and agriculture at MU during the eight-month Cooperative Education program.

News by Settaboot Onphakdee, Division of Corporate Communication