Ricke appointed to National Academy of Sciences committee for food safety review

Dec. 3, 2008
Contact Information:

Steven C. Ricke, Department of Food Science
479-575-4678 / sricke@uark.edu
By Dave Edmark, University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture
479-575-5647 / dedmark@uark.edu

Download story
Steven C. Ricke

Steven C. Ricke

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Steven C. Ricke, the director of the Center for Food Safety at the University of Arkansas System’s Division of Agriculture, has been appointed to serve on a National Academy of Sciences committee that will review how the federal Food Safety Inspection Service examines meat processing plants.

Ricke, who in 2005 became the first person to hold the Donald “Buddy” Wray Chair in Food Safety at the university, will serve on the Standing Committee on the Use of Public Health Data in FSIS Food Safety Programs. The 29-member committee is comprised of prominent food safety scientists from universities, institutes, organizations, industry and government agencies.

The committee members and others with expertise will examine how data gathered by FSIS, an agency within the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is used to support risk-based food inspections. The committee will review the methods that FSIS uses to assess to what extent certain processing plants’ meat products may be at risk of contamination.

“Our committee will meet twice a year and review past studies and the progress of current studies,” Ricke said. “We will also be briefed by agency personnel and will identify emerging issues that FSIS may wish to have addressed.”

Ricke is a professor in the food science and poultry science departments in the UA System Division of Agriculture. The bacterium Salmonella Enteritidis has been the major focus of Ricke's research. His research team recently reported findings that led to dietary changes for laying hens to prevent Salmonella Enteritidis infection during molting, a periodic shedding of feathers.

Ricke received his B.S. degree in animal science in 1979, an M.S. degree in ruminant nutrition in 1982 from the University of Illinois and his Ph.D. degree in 1989 from the University of Wisconsin with a co-major in animal science and bacteriology. From 1989 to 1992 Ricke was a USDA-ARS postdoctorate in the Microbiology Department at North Carolina State University. He was at Texas A&M University for 13 years and was a professor in the Poultry Science Department with joint appointments on the food science and technology, molecular and environmental plant sciences and nutrition faculties and the Veterinary Pathobiology Department.

He received the Poultry Science Association Research Award in 1999 for outstanding research published in the previous year and received the American Egg Board award in 2006. He has also been honored with an appointment in 2002 as a Texas Agricultural Experiment Station Faculty Fellow for outstanding research accomplishments.

He also has academic appointments in both the UA Poultry Science Department and the Food Science Department and is a faculty member of the Cellular and Molecular Graduate program. He is currently serving as an editorial board member of several journals and is editor-in-chief of the international journal, Bioresource Technology.  He has published 56 review articles and book chapters, 200 original research papers and given 68 invited talks.