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University of Bayreuth, Media release, No. 016/2021, 09 February 2021

Well-founded information instead of fake news: Academy for New Media, KErn, and the University of Bayreuth create online portal on nutrition issues

Scientifically sound but comprehensibly prepared information for journalists, nutrition experts, and consumers - this is what "Ernährungsradar” (Nutrition Radar), a new online knowledge portal, seeks to offer. The service is currently being developed by Kompetenzzentrum für Ernährung (Competence Centre for Nutrition, KErn), Akademie für Neue Medien (Academy of New Media, ANM), and the University of Bayreuth (UBT) in Kulmbach. It is scheduled to go online at the end of 2021.

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Information about nutrition seems to be increasing almost exponentially. The topic is characterised by a very broad spectrum of opinions, trends, and new findings. In this environment, it is all the more important to counter fake news and half-knowledge with good nutritional information.

The new platform - "Ernährungsradar" - seeks to be a digital media centre for nutrition, and a point of contact for editors or authors who write about nutrition. To this end, the portal offers information on the state of research, well-prepared figures and data, as well as interview partners. It picks up on popular trends and debates, explains fake news and myths, reviews influencer and Facebook videos, while explanatory videos and e-learning offers are also planned.

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KErn bundles knowledge about nutrition in Bavaria. The new online knowledge portal is intended to open up a trustworthy path to sound nutritional information. 

Because even "for journalists and editors it is often not easy to find the correct information on nutritional matters. The research situation is so complex that even experts sometimes have problems conducting research. That is why we aim to offer the media sound background knowledge on selected topics in the field of nutrition," says Guido Winter, Head of KErn.

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A nationwide network of renowned experts is planned to provide this background knowledge. The University of Bayreuth would especially like to use the expertise of the scientists in its new Faculty of Life Sciences: Food, Nutrition & Health in Kulmbach, and to encourage students of the emerging interdisciplinary master's programmes collaborate. 

Founding Dean Prof. Dr. Stephan Clemens explains: "Effective and sound science communication is a core competency for us, one we seek to impart to our students. Even before the Covid 19 pandemic, we recognized how important factual orientation is and how difficult that can be.”

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Thomas Nagel, Director of Studies at Akademie für Neue Medien, is pleased about the close cooperation, especially with the University of Bayreuth. 

Since the founding of Akademie für Neue Medien in 1987, one of the goals has been to teach students the important media skills: "The transfer of knowledge from academia to the media is an important concern. I'm looking forward to this exciting joint project with KErn and the University, and I'm sure the success story will continue beyond 2024.”

    The project is scheduled to go online at the end of 2021. Unlike existing offerings from public authorities or research institutions, the project does not focus on consumer tips, recipes, or food education. Instead, it has an explicitly issue-, debate- and media-centred approach divided into three parts:

  • The thematic section offers understandably conveyed research information that journalists cannot easily research in the hectic and sparsely staffed newsroom. For example, what the new A2 milk is all about, how healthy or unhealthy meat and sausage really are, or which protein alternatives are considered sustainable. The new portal contains figures, data, and prepared graphics on such topics. In addition, there are possible interview partners, experts for further questions, as well as the positions of various actors involved in the nutrition debate from agriculture, production, trade, and environmental protection.

  • In the learning section, the project team is planning a range of explanatory videos, online seminars, tutorials, and multimedia offers with which knowledge can be conveyed in a playful way. This is aimed at multipliers such as nutritionists or kitchen managers, but also at interested users.
  • Meanwhile, the check section is aimed at editorial offices and a broader audience. Here, journalists and experts will review videos, books, or portals on nutritional information in order to uncover myths and fake news.

The knowledge portal is being funded to the tune of almost € 1.4 million by the Bavarian State Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Forestry (StMELF), the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL), and Oberfrankenstiftung (Upper Franconia Foundation).

Further information

https://www.kern.bayern.de/wissenschaft/262070/index.php

About Akademie für Neue Medien
Akademie für Neue Medien (Bildungswerk) e.V. has been a journalism school and training centre for the world of media for 33 years. Since 1987, more than 1,000 young journalists have been successfully trained in Kulmbach and now work nationwide at radio and television stations, in online editorial offices, or press offices. Employees from the areas of PR and marketing, or career changers from all sectors, can also complete seminars and workshops in the historic Langheimer Amtshof, the headquarters of Akademie für Neue Medien. Thanks to the e-learning platform "Medienakademie Online" and the new webinar offering, participants can now learn online completely contact-free. In-house training for companies throughout the German-speaking world as well as the production of high-quality image films, video clips, radio series such as "Heimat ist ..." and podcasts round off the offering. Well-known members include the Bavarian Regulatory Authority for Commercial Broadcasting, Süddeutscher Verlag, the University of Bayreuth, and Börsenmedien AG.

About KErn
Kompetenzzentrum für Ernährung (KErn), established in 2011, closely networks state and private nutrition research institutions with the nutrition industry, service providers, and consumers. It is linked to the Bavarian State Institute for Agriculture (LfL) and is part of the Bavarian State Government's Department of Food, Agriculture and Forestry. With its range of services, the competence centre addresses the various players in nutrition education and counselling, research institutions, institutions in the education, health and social sectors, partners in nutrition production and business, and, last but not least, the media. KErn promotes knowledge-based and interdisciplinary dialogue between research, nutrition business and production, and nutrition education. The aim of KErn is to facilitate the flow of information between all groups involved and to rapidly transfer current knowledge into practice.

About the University of Bayreuth
Founded in 1975, the University of Bayreuth is currently one of Germany's most successful young universities. In the Times Higher Education (THE) Young University Rankings, it is ranked 51st among the 414 best young universities in the world, and in the QS World University Ranking, is in the top ten percent of 5,500 universities from around the globe. Interdisciplinary research and teaching is the main feature of the University's 160 degree programmes offered by six faculties covering the natural sciences, engineering, law, economics, languages, literature, and cultural studies. The University of Bayreuth is hosting approx. 13,330 students in the 2020/21 winter semester. It employs 257 professors, 1,395 scientific staff, and about 1,020 non-scientific employees at its campus in Bayreuth and its satellite campus in Kulmbach. It is the largest employer in the region. (Status: December 2020)

Contact at Akademie für Neue Medien

Thomas Nagel
Director of Studies

Akademie für Neue Medien (Bildungswerk) e.V.
Phone: +49 (0) 9221 1316
E-Mail:
t.nagel@bayerische-medienakademien.de
www.bayerische-medienakademien.de

Contact at KErn

Christine Röger
Division Head Science

Kompetenzzentrum für Ernährung - KErn
Phone: + 49 (0) 8161 /71-2782
E-Mail: christine.roeger@kern.bayern.de
https://www.kern.bayern.de

Contact at the University of Bayreuth

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Prof. Dr. Stephan ClemensFounding Dean Faculty VII of Life Sciences

Phone: +49 (0)9221 / 40 71000 or +49 (0)921 / 55-2630
E-Mail: stephan.clemens@uni-bayreuth.de, fakultaet7@uni-bayreuth.de, fqs@uni-bayreuth.de (for questions concerning Food Quality und Safety (M.Sc.))
Fax: +49 (0)9221 / 4071001

University of Bayreuth
Fritz-Hornschuch-Straße 13, 95326 Kulmbach

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Anja-Maria Meister

PR Spokesperson University of Bayreuth

Phone: +49 (0) 921 / 55-5300
E-mail: anja.meister@uni-bayreuth.de

Universitätsstraße 30
D-95447 Bayreuth