July 28, 2015

Contact: AnnMarie Cornejo
805-756-2427; ancornej@calpoly.edu

Cal Poly Food Science & Nutrition Students Win Grand Prize at National Product Development Competition

SAN LUIS OBISPO — A team of Cal Poly food science and nutrition students won the grand prize in the Disney Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) Student Association Product Development Competition held during IFT’s 2015 Annual Meeting and Food Expo, July 11-14 in Chicago.

The students were tasked with creating a market-relevant, nutritious snack for children 10 and younger that met the standards of the Disney Nutritional Guidelines and incorporated at least half a serving of a fruit, a vegetable, a low-fat dairy product or whole grains.

Cal Poly’s team, which included food science majors Michelle Reimer of Bakersfield, Vidita Deshpande of Santa Barbara, Franca Rossi of Salinas, and May Cheng of Dublin, Calif., created their Build a Snowman Kit snack based on the Disney character Olaf from the movie “Frozen.” The kit consists of two whole wheat Olaf shaped crackers, a fruit-and-vegetable spread, and dried cranberries as a topping.

The Disney team competed against teams from Rutgers University, the University of Georgia, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Virginia Tech.

A second Cal Poly team, which included food science majors Lily Bowman of Oakland, Heather McCain of Canyon Country, Katherine Lanfranki of Walnut Creek, Bouchra Nafi of Ventura and Nicole Neumayr of Westminster, Colo., earned an honorable mention for a product they developed in the Mars Institute of Food Technologists Student Association Product Development Competition. Rise, a cinnamon-agave flavored vegetable breakfast cereal was created with the intention of kick-starting American’s vegetable intake first thing in the morning.

The Mars team competed against students from Cornell University, McGill University, Pennsylvania State University, Michigan State University, and the University of Wisconsin.

The two Cal Poly teams were the only teams consisting only of undergraduate students to advance to the finals. All other competing teams included graduate students.

About Cal Poly’s Food Science & Nutrition Department
The Food Science & Nutrition Department in the College of Agriculture, Food & Environmental Sciences, offers comprehensive education in food science and nutrition, including the development of new foods and the study of how foods impact health, wellness and disease prevention. Cal Poly’s active learning environment and Learn by Doing philosophy give our students unique hands-on learning opportunities that translate to industry-readiness.

About the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT)
Since its founding in 1939, the IFT has been committed to advancing food science. The nonprofit scientific society of more than 18,000 members from more than 100 countries brings together food scientists, technologists and related professionals from academia, government and industry. For more information, go to www.ift.org.

About Cal Poly’s College of Agriculture, Food & Environmental Sciences
Cal Poly is a nationally ranked, comprehensive polytechnic university. The university’s College of Agriculture, Food & Environmental Sciences is comprised of expert faculty members who take pride in their ability to transform academically motivated students into innovative students ready to solve the complex challenges associated with feeding the world in sustainable ways. Students have access to state-of-the-art laboratories including ranchland, orchards, vineyards and forests, all of which provide the basis for Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing methodology.

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