Ronald YU

June 7th, 2021

Area of research:

Future Crops, Plant-based protein for sustainable future

Micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals, fibres, and antioxidants

Research project details:

I have two research focuses, i.e., “the BigBran Theory” and “Hooking fish on grains”.

First, through “the BigBran Theory”, I am developing a healthier cereal crop to reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Cereal grain has a thin outer layer called bran, it accounts for 10% of the grain, but it gives you 70% of important nutrients. Bran is good, big bran is better. I call this “the BigBran Theory”.

Check out my pitch in Ockham’s Razor in ABC Radio National for more information.

Second, I want to develop a new plant-based protein source for a sustainable future. On the land, there is a canola waste problem. After oil extraction, there is 22 million tonnes of canola meal remaining. Under the ocean, we catch 16 million tonnes of small wild fish every year just to feed our fish farms. I want to fix one problem by solving another, by feeding the farm fish with canola waste. I call this the “Hooking fish on grains” hypothesis.

To develop a more sustainable canola meal, I need to modify the nutrient composition in canola through conventional breeding and/or gene editing. Moving a step forward, I want to apply this hypothesis to transform different plant-based protein resources in soybean, pea, and lupin for a more sustainable future.


CSIRO Agriculture, Black Mountain, Canberra, ACT

My expectations from a mentoring partnership:

Dear Mentors,

I value this mentoring partnership as a rewarding and mutually beneficial opportunity. While I will be respectful and provide fresh perspectives, I am looking for:

  • If you are from Australian government departments, could you please share your knowledge and experience in strategic policy formulation or similar areas related to agricultural development?
  • If you are from industrial sectors and tech-com, could you give me a reality check about my innovative idea and/or connect me with different entrepreneurs with like-minded?
  • If you are from academic sector, could you share with me your knowledge on publication, grant proposal, and cutting-edge technologies in food sectors?
  • Coaching of leadership, guidance, and wisdom
  • Networking opportunities

I am happy to meet you in person, online (Zoom, Webex, Google Meet, etc.), email, or in different events and conferences. I am willing to arrange meetings that suit your schedule and will be respectful of your time.

My general interests:

I volunteer to be the National Gifted Children Coordinator at Australian Mensa. I coordinated nationwide events such as Australian Mensa Kid Conference, GATEWAYS Challenge, CyberTaipan, and BEBRAS Challenge for young Mensans across Australia. It is a wonderful experience to inspire and engage the most brilliant minds in Australia.

I am passionate about science communications.  I love telling stories and building emotional connections with my audience. I told my ‘Big Bran’ stories on radio shows “Dr. Karl’s Science Hour”, “SBS Mandarin Interview”, and “ABC Ockham’s Razor”. In addition, it was a great experience for me to participate in the “Advantage Innovation” pitch at AgCatalyst.

I like cooking cuisines from Hong Kong. I come from Hong Kong, a place where East meets West. In an authentic Hong Kong restaurant, you can order French toast, HK barbecue pork, Japanese Udon with a cup of English breakfast tea for a set lunch! I wish I can share with you more Hong Kong cuisine in the future. I love playing boardgames.


CSIRO profile page