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The University of Wisconsin-Madison recently named Steven Ricke as new director of the UW-Madison Meat Science and Animal Biologics Discovery program. The program involves research, teaching and outreach in the areas of meat science, food safety and the discovery of animal biologics.

Ricke previously was a professor of food science at the University of Arkansas as well as director of the university’s center for food safety. Considered a leader in the field of microbial food safety in poultry, Ricke is known for his research exploring how Salmonella and Campylobacter survive in food animals on the farm and during processing. He also has researched interventions to reduce the risk those foodborne pathogens pose to consumers.

As director of the Meat Science and Animal Biologics Discovery program, Ricke will be responsible for assessment, strategic guidance and oversight of research, teaching and outreach.

The Meat Science and Animal Biologics Discovery program is in the process of moving into a $60 million state-of-the-art facility. The new building will enable the program to expand and explore more avenues of innovation. That will involve new processing technologies, novel meat products, and biological compounds derived from animal processing to help open new commercial markets for the meat industry.

Ricke plans to continue his research at UW-Madison, which focuses on foodborne-pathogen ecology and the genetic mechanisms by which pathogens survive in variable environments.

Raised on a dairy and grain farm in Illinois Ricke earned a bachelor’s degree in agriculture and a master’s degree in ruminant nutrition from the University of Illinois. He earned in 1989 his doctorate in bacteriology and animal at UW-Madison. Visit for more information.

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