The year 2011 marked the golden anniversary of the Department of Food Science at NC State University. That spire of achievement sparked a celebration in Raleigh last September that welcomed alumni, emeriti, faculty and staff back to campus to revel in the accomplishments and impacts the department has had in high-caliber research and education, and on the food and bioprocessing industries of North Carolina, the nation and the globe since 1961. Thanks to all who participated in the anniversary events. For those unable to attend, this newsletter features photos taken from the activities. We hope through this publication to sustain the relationships and connections we managed to re-establish through the golden anniversary event.
Table of Contents
North Carolina State University is a dynamic campus, and if you were to drive through campus today, you would certainly notice change. Chancellor Randy Woodson is in his third year at the helm of our university, and Dean Johnny Wynne retired on July 1. In the midst of my first year as department head, we are pursuing a strategic plan to position the department for preeminence in critical aspects of food, bioprocessing and nutrition. We will remain on the frontier of basic science in the areas of functional genomics and probiotics as well as foods and nutraceuticals for promoting healthier lifestyles. And our renowned expertise in food safety and innovation in alternative processing technologies will remain a cornerstone of department activities. In the classroom, our faculty continue to deploy the latest in instructional technologies, adapting content to the rapidly evolving learning styles of our students, and we will be a pinnacle of education and training to our communities. Lastly, we will sustain our strong commitment to growing the food and beverage manufacturing enterprises throughout North Carolina and the nation. With a focused eye on these key directives, your Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences will remain an elite program of its kind, a program that our alumni will be proud to represent and support. These attainable aspirations will require support from all our stakeholders, from students, staff and faculty to our alumni and industrial clientele. With challenges and threats continuing to surface regarding state support for agricultural programs, the department must become less dependent upon public funding and more entrepreneurial in the programs we deliver. We encourage you to be involved and engaged with our department, and we ask for your support. There is a role for all to play as we produce talent and programs to respond to the grand challenges of feeding a world population rapidly growing beyond 7 billion people! By working together, we can develop solutions to the critical needs facing our society.
Reducing foodborne illness is goal of CALS microbiologist’s research............4 September 15
A grand celebration for a golden anniversary................................................................ 6 It’s muscadine time!........................................................................................................................ 8
Kannapolis scholars host conference to improve communication about childhood obesity.......................................................................................................................... 10
Department news/Faculty honors...................................................................................... 12
Nourishing your Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences.......................................................................................................................... 14
2013 March 23
Wine and Cheese
Chris Daubert Head, Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences
July 13-16 IFT
Reducing foodborne illness is goal of CALS microbiologist’s research by Dee Shore Each year, foodborne microbes make millions sick, lead to hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations and kill more than 3,000 people in the United States alone. In her Schaub Hall laboratory, NC State University’s Dr. Sophia Kathariou works to reduce that toll by unraveling the molecular mysteries of two particularly problematic pathogens. The bacteria Listeria monocytogenes and Campylobacter jejuni act in distinctly different ways – ways that have intrigued Kathariou, a professor in the Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences, for more than 25 years. Her objective: getting to know the bacteria in ways that lay the foundation for interventions that lower or eliminate their ability to contaminate food and infect people. Using molecular epidemiologic tools and genetic, physiologic and pathogenesis approaches, she identifies and characterizes bacterial lineages that are especially relevant to food safety. A native of Greece, Kathariou has researched Listeria since she was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Würzburg in Germany. The bacteria, she explains, can be found in raw foods such as uncooked meats. They are also found in soil and water, and once they get into food processing plants, they can persist there for years. Heat kills Listeria, so it doesn’t survive proper cooking. But, Kathariou says, ready-to-eat foods such as deli meats, smoked seafood and soft cheeses made with unpasteurized milk can become contaminated before being packaged, if the bacterium is present in the plant. When Listeria winds up in the food supply, it can cause a rare but potentially deadly illness called listeriosis. It can start with mild flu-like symptoms or gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea, but it spreads to other parts of the body, including the blood and brain. In a pregnant woman, it can cross the placenta and infect the fetus, which can lead to miscarriages, stillbirths and seriously ill infants.
This bacterium causes many more human infections than does Listeria – in fact, it is one of the most common causes of diarrheal illness in the United States – but it results in fewer deaths. Still, says Kathariou, campylobacteriosis is significant not only because of the acute gastroenteritis it causes but also because in about one in 1,000 cases it leads to the severe Guillain-Barré syndrome, which can lead to neuromuscular paralysis and sometimes result in lifelong disabilities. Most cases of campylobacteriosis result from eating raw or undercooked poultry or from cross-contamination of other foods by these items. But the bacteria are found in all animals that people raise for food and can also contaminate milk and water. For Campylobacter, Kathariou explores such questions as how did virulent strains evolve, how have they adapted to different animal hosts, what makes the bacteria so susceptible to dehydration, which genes make it resistant to antibiotics and what kinds of genes does it need to be able to colonize poultry flocks. Reducing illness is, bottom line, what Kathariou’s studies are all about. “When we work with bacteria that cause diseases, we do so with the goal of finding ways to reduce the public health burden,” Kathariou says, “because at the end of the day, we would like to be able to say that we’ve made a difference, for the better.” Read the full story at www.cals.ncsu.edu
While listeriosis infects only some 1,600 people in the nation annually, about 260 die, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Finding out how Listeria contaminates processing plants could be key to reducing the incidence of listeriosis as well as the economic losses that occur when food is recalled. So that’s one of the main focus areas of research conducted by Kathariou, her lab manager Robin Siletzky and visiting scientists and students who come from around the world to work in the lab. While Kathariou is generating a greater understanding of Listeria, she’s also expanding our knowledge of Campylobacter.
A grand celebration for a
In 2011 the Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences turned 50! Alumni, friends, faculty, staff and students gathered to celebrate the department’s golden anniversary during a September weekend packed with special events and activities. “The anniversary celebration was just wonderful,” said department head Dr. Chris Daubert. “We celebrated the department’s rich history while heralding the next 50 years of innovation and achievement. Our department is lucky to have such an enthusiastic and supportive family of alumni and friends.” More than two hundred people participated in anniversary events including a meet-and-greet football game viewing party, golf outing, pig pickin’, Howling Cow 5-K fun run and gala dinner. All festivities were fully funded by private donations.
It’s muscadine time! by Suzanne Stanard
When Dr. Keith Harris and College of Agriculture and Life Sciences alumnus Whit Jones first crossed paths two years ago, the meeting was anything but ordinary. Harris, CALS assistant professor of food, bioprocessing and nutrition sciences, and Jones, a 1982 horticultural science graduate and retired Extension agent, had gathered with other scientists, as well as Jones’ business partner and 1987 CALS horticulture alumnus Ron Cottle of Cottle Farms in Faison, to discuss the potential for a new family of muscadine products. “We were talking, and before I knew it, Whit got out a really high-horsepower blender and proceeded to make smoothies out of whole grapes,” Harris said. “I thought it would taste bitter, but I was pleasantly surprised that when you blend the entire grape, it’s actually very good.” Before retiring from his post in Cooperative Extension, Jones discovered that powdered muscadine nutritional supplements were very effective in relieving his muscle and joint pain. “After that, I knew that the chemicals in the seeds and skin worked,” he said. “So I had the idea to take the whole grape and grind it down, seed and skin and all. I’d like to transform the way people consume muscadines.” Jones got his hands on a very powerful blender that could pulverize an entire frozen grape. So he froze 250 pounds of grapes from a local grower’s muscadine harvest in late 2009 to test the idea of a muscadine smoothie.
packaging, shelf stability, how long the nutrients stick around, the venue for the package and the audience.” In fall 2011, Jones’ dream became a reality, in the form of a shelf-stable bottled smoothie called Muscadine Time. Success has been steadily coming. Cottle Farms harvested their first muscadines in 2011, and volume should increase substantially over the next two years, Jones said. He and Cottle have contracted with U.S. Foodservice to distribute whole, frozen muscadines to Port City Java, and they’ve partnered with a Canadian grocery chain to sell fresh muscadine grapes in 2012. Jones also has met with representatives from the Carolina Panthers football team, who have expressed interest in incorporating frozen muscadine grapes into the team’s diet next year. Cottle Farms soon will begin operating its own bottling line in Duplin County. Other muscadine products such as popsicles, ice cream, pie filling and baby food will be investigated in the future, Jones said. Jones praised Harris as “a crucial link in the chain.” And Harris said, “We want to be sure that everything we do is benefitting farmers,” he said. “That’s the purpose of the landgrant mission, to benefit the state of North Carolina. That’s why we’re here.” Read the full story at www.cals.ncsu.edu
Muscadines boast high antioxidant properties and have been dubbed a super-food in fighting cancers, diabetes and inflammation. They’re also very high in protein and fiber. “It’s the perfect food,” Jones said of his smoothie. “It has all of these incredible nutritional benefits and tastes good.” His crusade to develop a muscadine smoothie gaining steam, Jones turned to Harris for help in early 2010. After their initial meeting, Harris and his team began brainstorming ways to get the product from farm to market. “As food scientists, we have to think about everything from how to store the fruit after harvest to the best way to process it into something useful,” Harris said. “Food science is essentially food business. After processing, we also have to investigate
Kannapolis scholars host conference to improve communication about childhood obesity by Terri Leith NC State University graduate student Amanda Draut has made great strides toward the career she describes as “a food product developer with a nutritional spin,” since she arrived at the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. She entered the master’s degree program in the Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences (FBNS) two years ago with a goal of learning “how to deliver nutritionally beneficial food products that taste delicious to the people that need them,” she says. It was in this pursuit that she became a student in Dr. Keith Harris’ nutraceuticals and functional food course, which led to her position coordinating the Kannapolis Scholars Program at the North Carolina Research Campus. That position gave Draut many leadership opportunities, one of which has been her role in organizing “Lost in Translation: A Conversation in Childhood Obesity,” a day-long conference held in the summer of 2011. “The Kannapolis Scholars Program brings a group of graduate students together who are studying fields related to food and health from a pool of eight different universities,” Draut explains. “Students spend two summers at the North Carolina Research Campus in Kannapolis, participating in activities such as personality inventories, journal clubs, seminars and a collaborative effort to organize a final program conference all while benefitting from the amazing laboratories located there to do research towards their master’s or doctorate. The purpose of the program is to train students from a transdisciplinary perspective, meaning that they have an in-depth knowledge of their area of interest, but they also encounter other disciplines that can be incorporated into their thought process as they encounter research problems.” Part of the requirement of the students in the Kannapolis Scholars Program is that they work on a collaborative group project during their second summer in Kannapolis, she says. The group chose childhood obesity as the topic. “There is plenty of information about how to correct childhood obesity, but we still have almost 18 percent of children who are obese,” Draut said. “This points to the idea that the collective group who thinks about and deals with childhood obesity — including academia, government and stakeholders such as doctors, parents and teachers — is not communicating effectively enough and is not understanding each other’s needs. We really wanted to give these groups a platform on which this communication could be improved.” The conference drew more than 80 in-person and more than 160 online participants, including some international webinar participation.
Among conference attendees were teachers, physicians and nurses, along with representatives from academia, local school boards and local, state and federal government. The Kannapolis Scholars program perfectly complements Draut’s NC State studies, which began directly after she finished her undergraduate degree in the University of Tennessee’s Food Science and Technology program. Draut, a Cincinnati, Ohio, native, says she chose NC State because the university’s FBNS Department “is one of the best in the country, highlighted by the combination of food science, nutrition and bioprocessing into one department and by its strong Food Science Club involvement.” Then when Harris presented the idea of coordinating the Kannapolis Scholars Program, she says, “I found myself at the beginning of a wonderful opportunity.” It’s been a busy opportunity, too, she says. “In the beginning, I contributed to the development of two different websites, including one for the public and one Moodle [e-learning software platform] website for the scholars to use for assignments. I also contributed to the creation of assignments and program assessments for the scholars. During the past two summers, I was able to live in Kannapolis to assist with any housing issues, to run a journal club, to facilitate seminars given by researchers on the campus, to keep track of the scholars’ assignments via the Moodle website and to report some of the results that we are seeing.” And of course, this past summer, she helped plan and execute the “Lost in Translation” conference organized by the first class of Kannapolis Scholars. That first class has been very positive about the Kannapolis Scholars program, Draut says. Among the perks they mentioned are the new collaborations made, access to cutting edge laboratory equipment, opportunity to work with leading researchers in their fields and the ability to have had a different kind of experience than their fellow graduate students might have. “Students also enjoyed the seminar series, where a different researcher who was connected to the campus would discuss his or her work. They felt that this really bridged the N.C. Research Campus and allowed them to better understand the other fields represented in the group,” she says. “Many of the students have indicated that they forged new collaborations and added new ideas and techniques to their research based on their interactions while in the Kannapolis Scholars Program.”
Join your fellow FBNS alumni on LinkedIn! Simply search “North Carolina State Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences Department Alumni” on LinkedIn.com and click “Join Group.”
The program next continues into its third year, with a returning group of scholars. Read the full story at www.cals.ncsu.edu
Faculty and staff Honors 2011-2012 Academy of Outstanding Faculty Engaged in Extension: Ben Chapman
American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Fellow: Allen Foegeding CALS Award for Excellence: Carl Hollifield CALS Resource Development Award: Ben Chapman CALS Resource Development Award: Food Science Club
Food safety expert Rich Linton named CALS dean Dr. Richard Linton, a nationally recognized food-safety expert, will begin work as dean of the NC State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences on September 15. A specialist in food microbiology and developing food-safety systems to reduce the risk of foodborne illness, Linton most recently chaired the largest food science and technology program in the country at Ohio State. Before that, he served as a professor of food science, center director and unit leader at Purdue University. “We’re extremely fortunate to have been able to attract Dr. Linton to lead the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences,” NC State provost Warwick Arden said. “He has a strong agricultural background, and he’s led many successful collaborative efforts involving academia, industry and other important stakeholder groups. I’m confident that he’ll be a major asset to the college, the university and the state of North Carolina.”
Editor-in-Chief of IFT Journals: Allen Foegeding Epsilon Sigma Phi Awards: Visionary Leadership Award: David Green Team Award: Trevor Phister, Ben Chapman, Chris Gunter, Diane Ducharme Gilbert A. Leveille Award from IFT: Jon Allen Harris Award from Ohio State University: Todd Klaenhammer IFT Fellow: Tyre Lanier International Dairy Foods Association Research Award in Dairy Foods Processing: MaryAnne Drake Journal of Nutrition Education Reviewer Award: Suzanne Goodell Marvin A. Tung Award: Josip Simunovic NC State Innovator of the Year: Ken Swartzel Order of the Long Leaf Pine: Ken Swartzel Outstanding Extension Service Award: Ben Chapman Tarheel of the Week: Lee-Ann Jaykus
Swartzel retires Dr. Kenneth R. Swartzel, William Neal Reynolds Professor and former department head, began his retirement on July 1, 2012. With initiation of his phased retirement, Swartzel concluded a 37-year professional association with NC State University. Department fermentation initiative aims to support NC craft brewing industry Dr. Brian Farkas (left) and Dr. John Sheppard (right) – pictured below with doctoral student Johnathon Blake Layfield – have been instrumental in the development of a brewery in Schaub Hall. Established in 2006, when Sheppard joined the department, and approved for pilot-scale beer fermentations in 2008, the brewery is used for graduate teaching and research. The brewhouse capacity is 2.5 barrels (78 gallons), with four fermenters and a total fermentation capacity of 15 barrels (465 gallons). “We hope that the brewery soon will be used for the education and training of those wishing to be and currently employed at all levels in the craft brewing industry in North Carolina, thereby helping to ensure the continued growth of this important economic sector,” Sheppard said.
New hiring trends
The department is in the process of hiring two new faculty members: Assistant Professor, Extension Produce Food Safety Specialist Assistant/Associate Professor, Food Microbiology For more information please visit: ncsu.edu/foodscience
William Neal Reynolds Professorship: MaryAnne Drake, Lee-Ann Jaykus
Nourishing your Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences Keeping the FBNS family strong and healthy requires the attention of our important stakeholders, including alumni and emeriti, industrial partners and commodity organizations. From supporting daily operations to creating endowments that give back to the department in perpetuity, there are many ways you or your organization can help nurture the people and programs that make FBNS a preeminent department. Think about your own years and experiences in Schaub Hall. Was there a faculty or staff member who made a difference in your college career? Is there an endowment or student award named in their honor? There is no better way to recognize their influence on your life than to make a donation in their name. Perhaps there are program areas that directly impact your own work. Annual gifts to the department’s
Drs. Tri Duong, Greg Gharst and Rodney Green Family of Giulia and Livio Ferruzzi, Carlo Sama/FerSam Industries Dr. Henry and Irene Fleming Shirley and Jack Fleming, Jr. Family and Friends of Peggy Foegeding Dr. Victor and Marietta Jones Family of Benjamin W. Kilgore Family of Helen and Mose Kiser Maola Milk and Ice Cream Company M.G. Newell Corp. (Mid Atlantic Food Boosters) Family of Margaret B. and James A. Neely Drs. James and Diana Oblinger RJ and Tim Peppe Family of Lena M. and Hase H. Smith Southeastern Food Processors Association Aileen Tarver Dr. Frank and Rachel Thomas TW Garner Food Company
Dr. Christopher and Katie Daubert Dr. Harlan and Sarah Daubert NC State CALS Alumni Association NC State Food Science Club Dr. John and Kelli Rushing Dr. Arnie and Kara Sair Dr. Stephen F. Sylvia TW Garner Food Company
enhancement fund can be directed toward specific teaching, research and extension efforts. Program endowments of $25,000
or more (which can be set up over a period of five years) can also ensure discretionary funds are available to the faculty and staff who work in those program areas. Faculty and staff give time, talent and their own personal treasure, above and beyond the classroom and laboratory. Professorships and professional development award endowments help recruit, retain and reward those professors and professionals who dedicate their lives to the students and research areas, as well as to the health and well-being of our communities. Please use the enclosed form to make your commitment to a strong and healthy Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences.
Partners are featured on special display shelves in Schaub Hall that are designed to spotlight the companies and commodities that support and benefit from innovations in food, bioprocessing and nutrition sciences. The goal? Circle the building!
Aseptia, Inc. Butterball LLC CAPS Carolina/Virginia Dairy Products Association Daisy Brand Michael C. Druga Dr. Allen and JoAnna Foegeding Frito-Lay, Inc, Glanbia Foods GlaxoSmithKline GNT USA, Inc. Gojo Industries Hunter Farms/Harris Teeter Dr. Todd and Amy Klaenhammer Mount Olive Pickle Company, Inc. Myroc Food Processing Company Limited NC State Sensory Services Center NC State Dairy Enterprise System NC State University Dining NC State Food Rheology Lab Dr. Lynn and Beth Turner
partners & donors
Supporters Dr. Jon and Pat Allen Shannon Aycock Michael Bailey Richard Biziak Dr. Roy and Debbie Carawan Gary and Deborah Cartwright Nancy Chumney June and Richard Currin Diego Darquea Rick Earley Frank Edwards Dr. Curtis W. Emenhiser Dr. Dana Hanson Lab Dr. Keith Harris Dr. Suzanne Johanningsmeier Dr. Victor and Marietta Jones Lauren Kane Dr. David Lineback Peggy Litoff NC State Wolfpack Club Dr. Sarid Shefet Dr. John Sheppard Lab Richard E. Shore, Jr. Sigma Xi Len Swain Dr. Ken and Peggy Swartzel Dr. Donn and Nora Ward
Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences 100 Schaub Hall, Campus Box 7624 Raleigh, NC 27695-7624
Visit us online!
Non-profit U.S. Postage PAID Raleigh, NC Permit No. 2353
volume 1 of our departmental digest