Two University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences food scientists and a seafood specialist with UGA Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant have been presented awards of excellence from the International Association for Food Protection. Distinguished Research Professor Emeritus Larry Beuchat, professor Francisco Diez and public service faculty member Tori Stivers were recognized at the association’s 2019 annual meeting in Louisville, Kentucky.
Beuchat received the Maurice Weber Laboratorian Award in recognition of his outstanding contributions in the laboratory. The award also honors his commitment to the development of innovative and practical analytical approaches in support of food safety.
Beuchat is a world authority on the microbiology of fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes; methods for detecting yeasts, molds and pathogenic bacteria in foods; metabolic injury of bacteria and fungi; relationships of water activity to microbial growth; antimicrobial compounds in foods; fermented foods; thermal resistance of mold ascospores; and food preservatives.
Diez and Stivers are two of four recipients of the IAFP Fellow Award, which is bestowed on professionals who have contributed to IAFP and its affiliates with distinction over an extended period of time.
Diez joined UGA in 2016 as director of the Center for Food Safety on the UGA Griffin campus. Diez has authored 95 peer-reviewed articles and 13 book chapters. His research focuses on the control of foodborne pathogens, low-water activity foods, the safety of organic foods and pathogens associated with fresh produce.
He serves on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods.
Stivers has served as Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant’s seafood and marketing specialist since 1987. She provides guidance and training to the seafood industry, helping businesses meet food safety regulations and ensuring that Georgia seafood is safe for consumers.
She is recognized for her service to IAFP, the Georgia Association for Food Protection and her contributions to seafood safety and communication.