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Agricultural News

Research and Food Packaging Highlighted by FAPC Center During OSU's Research Week Activities

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 15:44:48 CST

Research and Food Packaging Highlighted by FAPC Center During OSU's Research Week Activities Oklahoma State University's Robert M. Kerr Food & Agricultural Products Center held its 18th Annual Research Symposium to highlight food and agricultural products research during OSU Research Week, celebrated Feb. 19-23.

Sponsored by the Institute of Food Technologists-Oklahoma section, Stillwater Chamber of Commerce, Bemis and Oklahoma Association for Food Protection, the Feb. 20 symposium featured student oral and poster presentations from OSU, Langston University and University of Central Oklahoma, a keynote presentation by Dan Siegel of Bemis and a panel discussion on food packaging.

“The Research Symposium is an opportunity for students to make presentations of their work and for researchers to network with others in the food and agricultural field and possibly foster future collaborations among colleagues,” said Peter Muriana, FAPC food microbiologist and chair of the symposium.

This year’s symposium included 12 oral presentations and 16 poster presentations with graduate and undergraduate student awards presented in both categories.

The top winners in the graduate oral competition were Joyjit Saha (OSU), first place, Santiago Molina (OSU), second place, and Claudia Diaz-Ruiz (OSU), third place.

Adrienne Blakey (OSU), Kylee Fowler (Langston) and Monica Mascarenas (Langston) were awarded first, second and third place, respectively, in the undergraduate oral competition.

In the graduate poster competition, the winners were Sabra Billups (OSU), first place, Manish Aryal (OSU) and Claudia Diaz-Ruiz (OSU), second place-tie, and Audrey Boeken (OSU), third place.

Jasmine Middleton (Langston), Morgan Sarchet (OSU) and Anja Williams (Langston), were awarded first, second and third place, respectively, in the undergraduate poster competition.

Thanks to the event sponsors, the winners in all categories received $250 for first place, $150 for second plcace and $75 for third place.

During the keynote address, Siegel addressed more than 80 attendees of the symposium about packaging to protect meat color.

Siegel is a part-time consultant with Bemis North America, a global supplier of flexible packaging used by leading food, consumer products, healthcare and other companies worldwide. He is one of the inventors of Bemis’ FreshCase technology and known for his expertise on Cook-In packaging, fresh-meat color and case-ready packaging. He also is part owner of two food processing companies, Deli Star Corp. and King’s Food Products.

“I started with Bemis in 1982, and that’s when the industry learned how to modify polymers so that when they were heated up to cooking temperatures, they wouldn’t migrate into the foods and cause a problem from a safety standpoint,” he said. “I started to develop my passion for food packaging at that time.”

Siegel said packaging has evolved over the years, including all types of plastic films the industry has embraced to protect food products from chemical detoriation.

Siegel focused his presentation on the various packaging strategies used to protect fresh and processed meats, as well as other foods such as cheese, produce and seafood.

“Dr. Siegel has a long history in the meat packaging industry, and we were fortunate to have him share his knowledge during the symposium,” Muriana said. “Packaging is such an important component in food manufacturing. A tremendous amount of research goes into making sure the package not only assists with the quality and safety of the product but also the functionality and visual appearance on the grocery store shelves.”

More information about Siegel plus his keynote presentation and slides are available online.

The day concluded with a panel discussion on food packaging, led by Andrea Graves, FAPC business marketing and planning specialist and chair of the center’s packaging committee.

The panelists included Robby Adams of Bar-S Foods and Brian Jones of Bemis. The duo discussed perceptions of what drives packaging innovation, including sustainability and the difficulties of defining stustainablity, colors and customer input.

“The panel was a great opportunity for the attendees to ask questions about packaging in the food industry, especially off the heels of Dr. Siegel’s keynote presentation,” Graves said. “Robby and Brian did an outstanding job providing insight on the importance of food packaging and how both Bar-S and Bemis are keeping up with packaging trends.”

Tom Coon, OSU vice president for agricultural programs, said the FAPC Research Symposium is an example of the division’s commitment to providing relevant and timely educational experiences to students and other stakeholders.

“Our land-grant mission is to develop and disseminate science-based knowledge that improves the quality of life for the people of Oklahoma and beyond, and FAPC has been a high-profile and very important way in which we have done that for more than two decades,” he said.

Source - Oklahoma State University



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