See cutline below
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Many parents presume their children will shun whole grains because they think they don’t like them, a University of Florida researcher says, but a new UF study may start to debunk that idea.
If whole grains are offered, kids eat them, according to a new study by researchers at UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. Specifically, former graduate student Allyson Radford and two faculty members found children ate whole- and refined-grain foods in equal amounts.
“We tried to choose foods we thought kids would enjoy, such as cereal bars, macaroni and cheese and SunChips and found that they ate the ready-to-eat snack foods the most,” said Radford, one of the study’s authors. “We were interested to see if they would eat the whole-grain foods as much as the refined-grain foods, and so we were pleasantly surprised that they would eat the same amount whether the food was whole or refined.”
On June 18, the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences presented Biotechnology Literacy Day, during which scientists and members of the public discussed genetic modification technology, its safety, and role in the world’s food supply. Links to the seven lectures can be found at: http://research.ifas.ufl.edu/biotech.shtml.
Contact: Kevin Folta, 352-273-4812, email@example.com
Photo caption: Corn is one of seven crops that is genetically engineered.
Caption at bottom
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Scientists believe climate change means more erratic weather patterns for the future, and that doesn’t bode well for forests in the Southeastern U.S.
Two things trees don’t need are damaging hurricane-force winds and wildfires, and they believe those climate change-related weather patterns portend more of both.
University of Florida researchers, including postdoctoral research associate Andres Susaeta, built a computer model that simulates various climate scenarios in hopes of minimizing the potentially cataclysmic damage to forests on privately owned forest land.
“Climate change is likely to affect forest productivity and exacerbate the impacts of big disasters on forest ecosystems in the South,” Susaeta said.
From farm gate to dinner plate, consumers are looking for more local food options. According to the latest USDA Census of Agriculture, industry estimates put local food sales at $7 billion in 2011, reflecting the market’s growing importance.
A revamped online tool, called Florida Food Connect, at www.floridafoodconnect.com, offers agricultural producers an easy-to-use way to reach new customers and offers consumers an easy way to find local growers of the freshest foods.
Florida Food Connect offers large and small producers and growers opportunities to diversify sales and build profitable relationships.
Caption at bottom
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – A University of Florida-created model may help growers plant at optimal times and avoid crop-destroying drought, which can cost millions of dollars in a given year, according to one of the tool’s creators.
If growers know when their crops need the most water, they can plant accordingly, said Keith Ingram, an associate scientist in UF’s agricultural and biological engineering department, part of the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences.
Although forecasts indicate a drought’s likelihood, they aren’t perfect, Ingram said. But they can help a farmer decide whether to plant a crop earlier or later than usual so drought is less likely to occur when the crop is most sensitive to drought, Ingram said.
Caption at bottom
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — A new liquid treatment may keep a Florida avocado hybrid fresh longer, a finding that could expand the avocado’s marketability, a University of Florida study shows.
Former UF doctoral student Marcio Eduardo Canto Pereira used ethylene as well as liquid and gaseous forms of 1-methylcycloprene on Booth 7 avocados, a combination of West Indian and Guatemalan varieties. Ethylene is a natural plant hormone produced by fruits and can be applied to speed the ripening process ─ as is done commonly with bananas and tomatoes ─ while 1-methylcycloprene slows the process.
See caption below.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Soaking muscadine grape seeds or skins in a solution of enzymes can boost antioxidants extracted from the fruit, creating possible new uses for grape leftovers, which are loaded with nutrients, a University of Florida study shows.
After making wine, a producer typically sends the grape seeds and skins to a landfill, said Maurice Marshall, a UF/IFAS food science and human nutrition professor and study co-author. But by using cellulase, pectinase and glucosidase, scientists found the grape seeds and skin aren’t just a waste product. The enzymes increase the antioxidant activity, from the grape seeds and skins. New uses could include food additives or nutritional supplements.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – A four-year faculty member in the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences has received a national award for young leaders in her field.
Kelly Grogan, a food and resource economics assistant professor, was selected in May as one of five national winners of the 2014 Early Career Professional Leadership Award by the Council on Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics.
The C-FARE Board of Directors selected Grogan based on her merit and interest in learning more about federal grant programs. The council also commended Grogan for her interest in communicating agriculture and applied economics to policymakers.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Genetically engineered foods are a politically charged, often misunderstood subject, and University of Florida officials hope to help shed light on the issue by hosting a public seminar June 18.
Kevin Folta, chairman of UF’s horticultural sciences department, has organized the event, scheduled from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. in Emerson Alumni Hall. Several well-known experts will lecture and answer questions. All are welcome to attend. (more …)