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CPS partners with Australian produce industry - Opportunity for US and Australian scientists to collaborate

February 12, 2013
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Throughout the past five years, the Center for Produce Safety has cultivated domestic and international research collaborations. The first of such efforts were partnerships through the U.S. - Israel Binational Agriculture Research and Development Fund and the California Leafy Greens Research Program. This year's Request for Proposals (RFP) has a diverse list of research partners. Through a series of articles, the various types of partnerships in the current RFP will be explored.

Davis, CA, February 12, 2013 - The Center for Produce Safety announced its eighth request for research proposals on February 1, 2013. Proposals are due into the CPS grants website on Thursday, March 28, 2013. Within this request are core research questions identified by the CPS technical committee and specific questions identified by CPS partners. A new partner noted in this year's proposal request is the Australian produce industry - Fresh Produce Safety Australia & New Zealand (FPSANZ) project, a joint initiative by the University of Sydney Faculty of Agriculture and Environment (USyd FAE) and PMA Australia - New Zealand (PMA A-NZ).

In November 2012 FPSANZ held its first produce research forum, Building a New Paradigm. This meeting brought together local and international participants from across the fresh produce supply chain to discuss and develop a national plan around produce food safety issues. It featured expert speakers from the Center for Produce Safety (CPS) located at the University of California, Davis, the US Produce Marketing Association, the Australian and New Zealand Produce Marketing Association (PMA Australia-New Zealand), Horticulture Australia Limited and the University of Sydney. Following the forum, Michael Worthington, CEO of PMA A-NZ stated, "In the last 5 years globally there have been huge improvements in the approach to food safety in the fresh produce industry," he went on to say "the health and safety of consumers are our greatest priority and all parts of the supply chain from growers to retailers and food outlets have really stepped up their collaborative efforts to minimize the risks."

Associate Professor Robyn McConchie, Head of Plant and Food Science at the University of Sydney stated, "We are developing a research model where we will be building upon existing research and information from around the globe and conducting new research, which will focus on filling the knowledge gaps in Australia and New Zealand to protect and enhance food quality and safety in fresh produce."

FPSANZ and the CPS are requesting joint research proposals from Australian and US scientists from industry, government, and academic communities to address two major research priorities which were identified at the fresh produce safety forum in 2012:

Proposals will be reviewed by the CPS technical committee and FPSANZ technical experts. Awards will be announced Fall of 2013.

For further information about FPSANZ research priorities, the CPS Request for Research guidance document, and all of this year's research priorities, please visit the CPS website, http://www.centerforproducesafety.org

CPS RFP Contact:
Bonnie Fernandez-Fenaroli, Executive Director
Center for Produce Safety
Phone (530) 757-5777, bfernandez@centerforproducesafety.org 

 

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