Research Facilities

Human Nutrition and Dietetics

Our Clinical Nutrition Research Laboratory is equipped with leading-edge analytical instruments, including headspace GC-FID, GC-MS, HPLC-DAD and UHPLC-DAD, enabling our researchers and graduate students to determine and characterize a wide range of nutrients, phytosterols, antioxidants, flavonoids and their metabolites.  

The Clinical Research Unit is ideal for focus-group meetings and behaviour and consumer studies. It is also equipped with clinical research tools, including blood pressure monitor, glucometers, urine analyser and a phlebotomy station for blood-sample collection.  

The Vij’s Kitchen & Culinary Laboratory includes kitchen stations, a demonstration station and an audiovisual system enabling filming, webcasting and more. An ideal environment for students learning basic food theory and preparation, it is often used for culinary classes.  

Our Sensory Laboratory includes 14 panelist booths with delivery windows. Connected to the culinary laboratory for preparing food samples, the laboratory is ideal for teaching, research and commercial testing. 

Food Safety and Quality

Our new state-of-the-art BC Food and Beverage Innovation Centre establishes UBC as a dynamic centre of excellence for food processing research. The centre will investigate and develop innovative solutions in the processing, packaging and marketing of B.C.’s agriculture and aquaculture products, while partnering with local producers to help them grow their businesses more effectively.  

The Pilot Plant Facility at the Food, Nutrition and Health (FNH) building is food-grade, and includes equipment specifically for food engineering/processing experiments.  

Our Food, Nutrition and Health (FNH) research labs are used for graduate research, and on a by-permission basis for undergraduate students. These labs offer a wide assortment of analytical equipment and reagents.  

Undergraduate Teaching Laboratories are located at the MacMillan Building on the main UBC campus. These are fully equipped for food chemistry/analysis and food microbiology experiments. 

Sustainable Agriculture

The Biometeorology and Soil Physics Group has more than three decades of experience in making CO2, CH4, N2O, water vapour and energy exchange measurements. Utilizing their significant technical expertise, they have designed a variety of superior instrumentation for continuous environmental measurements. 

Instruments in the Sustainable Agriculture Landscapes Laboratory (SAL) include a Bruker TENSOR 37 FT-IR spectrometer for high-throughput physical and chemical analysis of soils and a Picarro CRDS for the simultaneous analysis of CO 2, N 2O and CH 4. The lab also maintains workstations for GIS and remote sensing analysis. 

The Analytical Core Facility is a shared laboratory available to those across UBC, and outside of UBC on a fee-for-service basis. The facility has specialized equipment for the analysis of small molecules in plant, microbial, and biological samples.

The Centre for Sustainable Food Systems (CSFS) at UBC Farm includes 24 hectares of integrated organic farm and forest ecosystem. These facilities are uniquely positioned to respond to the challenges of preserving traditional foodscapes and ecosystems, the elimination of hunger and malnutrition, and adapting to climate change. 

The UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre combines a working dairy farm with an innovative dairy cattle research centre. Approximately 230 cows are milked daily, with milk and animal sales covering the Centre’s day-to-day farming costs. State-of-the-art equipment and a 500-strong herd meet the Centre’s growing research demands.  

Located on the UBC campus, Totem Field is deployed for a wide array of short and long-term research projects. Its soil types range from rich and loamy to dry and desert like, and it has adaptive irrigation capacity from drip line to overhead. (Totem Field is managed by UBC Plant Care Services).

Also situated on the Vancouver campus, the two UBC Greenhouse facilities support a wide range of detailed research initiatives via equipment including programmable temperatures and fertilizer and CO 2 regimes plus support for data collection and experimental design. (Managed by UBC Plant Care Services.)

The SOILRES lab analyzes soil properties by measuring the elemental CHNS/O composition of soil and plant samples (from carbon rich forest floor material to low carbon mineral soils) using a Thermo Scientific FlashSmart Elemental Analyzer and total organic carbon and nitrogen in liquid samples using a Shimadzu TOC-L analyzer. They have expertise in experimental design and have access to a variety of other tools such as rhizoboxes, microwave digestor and micro-probe pH meters, microbalances.