Myths, Mysteries and Science of Edible Bird's Nest

Learning Centre Room UG 09
Tuesday 5 March 2019 (13:00-14:00)

To find out more please email Hilary Mousley.

Soo-Ying Lee

SPEAKER: Professor Soo-Ying Lee, School of Physical & Mathematical Sciences, Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and Director of the Institute of Advanced Studies, NTU.

Swiftlets of genus Aerodramus fuchiphagus, native to the Indo-Pacific region, build edible bird’s nest (EBN) with a mucin secretion. The cleaned EBN is believed to have exceptional nutritional and medicinal properties. It has been consumed, particularly by the Chinese, for more than a thousand years. It is one of the most expensive Asian food delicacies, and has been labelled by westerners as the “Caviar of the East”. The trade in EBN is worth billions of dollars annually, with the production of raw EBN localized in South-East Asia, particularly in Indonesia and Malaysia, but with the consumers’ market largely in China. Many myths and mysteries surround the demand for EBN as food and medicine, and science is shedding light on them.