How we are run: our governance

We run our activities through a not-for-profit, limited liability company which was granted charitable status in November 2007. The company's directors are our Board of Trustees, elected by our membership.

Our organisational structure is designed to meet our continuing fundamental objectives whilst retaining flexibility to accommodate shifts in emphasis and evolutionary change. The Standing Committees and Forums advise and inform the Board of Trustees on the topics and activities for which they are responsible.

IFST Petition for Chartership 

We are delighted to confirm that IFST has been granted permission by the Privy Council to petition to become a Chartered body. This is an exciting and important milestone for the Institute and one which we have been working towards for very many years. Learn more about our petition for chartership. 

Board of Trustees

The governing and policy-making body (legally also the Board of Directors) of the company and consists of a President, President-Elect or Immediate Past President, Vice President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Treasurer, and the Chairs of the Standing Committees and Forums. An Independent Assessor, responsible for assessing the effectiveness with which the Board discharges its duties, attends Board meetings but is not a Trustee.

We make the minutes of our most recent meetings available to members.

Executive Team

Comprises the Chief Executive, who works with the Board of Trustees on resource planning, management priorities, development and legal and financial aspects. The Chief Executive is supported by a small team to implement policies and fulfill our plans. 

Annual General Meeting

Our Annual General Meeting (AGM) is open to Members and Fellows and normally takes place in March each year. The 2024 AGM agenda, Financial Statements 2022-23 and associated documents are available to members to download. 


We run a number of Committees. They are made up of volunteers, members of the Executive Team and a Board member. Our Committees oversee activities relating to their particular area and feedback to the Board. The Forums help develop policy, take work forward, and inform the debate. 


We also work across seven branches around the UK. Branches bring together members in the local geographical area to plan or attend events such as factory visits or conferences, run competitions and hold meetings.

Special Interest Groups

Provide opportunities for members with common special interests to come together professionally.


IFST's prizes and awards programme is designed to recognise and celebrate the outstanding work/achievement of a group or individual throughout the food science community.  From Honorary Fellowship to the Impact Award, there are plenty of opportunities to celebrate outstanding work by food professionals.