Dr. Soo Ahn, the organizer of this workshop, is Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist in Food Science and Human Nutrition Department at University of Florida (UF), Gainesville, FL. She received her Ph.D. in Food Science from Cornell University in 2003. Dr. Ahn joined in Food Science and Human Nutrition at University of Florida in Dec 2011. She has been active in the field of food safety with expertise in food-borne pathogen detection. Her extension focus is developing Food Entrepreneurship Program for Floridians and education program for small-sized growers and farmers’ markets vendors/consumers. She is a member of several scientific societies including Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) and International Association for Food Protection (IAFP).
The primary focus of the Dr. Dahl’s Extension program is to provide solutions to the food and nutritional concerns of populations at risk for malnutrition, particularly frail older adults and individuals at risk of malnutrition. In addition, in-service trainings are provided and educational resources and curriculum are developed for the Health, Nutrition and Food Safety county Extension agents focusing on the nutrients of concern in the U.S. diet, as well as a variety of health and nutrition topics in response to their learning and county programming needs.
The major of our extension effort focused on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and both Packinghouse and Juice HACCP. Our past program, the Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) training program, while relevant, is being replaced by the Produce Safety Rule and Preventive Controls training efforts. I anticipate that we’ll no longer offer GAPs training, at least not in a workshop form. In 2016, we conducted and/or participated in 35 workshops on various food safety topics. These meetings reached a substantial portion of the Florida produce industry. These programs remain nationally and international recognized. The Juice HACCP program serves approximately 75-80% of the juice industry in the US and is only one of a small handful in the country that continues to conduct training. Our Packinghouse HACCP course is the only International HACCP Alliance recognized course of its kind. For our other programs we have participants from around the country (academic, industry and regulatory) who attend our workshops. I also as a committee member is the annual International Citrus and Beverage Conference. This is one of the largest annual conferences hosted by IFAS.