I write about the future of food and the connections between our food systems, the environment and public health.


Microbial Magic? The potential of fermentation in modern food systems

Fermentation may be just as important as fire when it comes to making food and, by extension, for human development. This ancient way of preserving food made fruits and vegetables last longer and easier to digest, providing early humans with...   Read more

fermentation at work - fermented sourdough

What role can algae play in our food systems?

An algae-based diet was important for early human evolution and the nutrients they contain are critical for our flourishing. Yet algae play a marginal role in modern Western diets. There is major potential for these incredible organisms to contribute towards...   Read more

person eating a seaweed salad

The untapped potential of algae to transform our diets

Algae just might have superpowers. Packed with nutrients, including high levels of protein, essential amino acids, vitamins and minerals, some species are considered a ‘complete’ food. Algae can confer immune support and have anti-inflammatory properties, reducing the likelihood of cancer...   Read more

Strategic Policy and Research Advisory

on food, the environment and human health

I’m Elta Smith, an independent researcher and writer who generates ideas and produces insights for people who care deeply about food, the environment and human health.

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My projects have addressed pressing issues related to antimicrobial resistance, climate change, open science, emerging technologies, biodiversity, and consumer behaviours. I believe that making better decisions means embracing complexity and the interrelationships between what we know and how we act.


Get in touch to find out more about my projects or to work with me.