Accolades: February 2019
Professor David Slaughter to receive medal for exceptional engineering achievement in agriculture
David Slaughter, a professor in the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, has been selected to receive the 2019 Cyrus Hall McCormick-Jerome Increase Case Gold Medal from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. The award will be presented July 10 during the organization’s 2019 annual meeting in Boston.
The award honors exceptional and meritorious engineering achievement in agriculture that has resulted in new concepts, products, processes or methods that advance the development of agriculture. Slaughter is renowned for his work on precision agriculture.
He invented the concept of the robotic cultivator and has successfully established use of an inter-row precision cultivator guided with machine vision, as well as automated crop mapping, automated individual plant care and precision weed removal. Slaughter developed one of the first robotic fruit harvesting systems. His innovative research has resulted in six U.S. patents.
To learn more about Slaughter’s work, please visit Smart Farm creating the farm and farmworkers of the future.
Ned Spang, Danielle Huddlestun and Donna Vivar acknowledged for excellence in advising
For the second year in a row, three members of the college with student advising roles are recipients of an NACADA Region 9 Excellence in Advising award. NACADA, National Academic Advising Association, is a global community for academic advising.
- Assistant professor Ned Spang won the Faculty Advisor award. He studies water, energy and food systems in the Department of Food Science and Technology.
- Departmental advisor Danielle Huddlestun received a certificate of merit for excellence in advising in the Primary Advising Role category. She works in the Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology.
- UAP director Donna Vivar was selected for excellence in advising in the Advising Administrator category. She works in the CA&ES Dean’s Office.
NACADA seeks to promote student success in higher education by advancing the field of academic advising through professional development, networking and leadership opportunities. Learn more at the organization’s website.
Food science professor Christopher Simmons and research team honored with IPM award
Christopher Simmons, an assistant professor in the Department of Food Science and Technology, and his research team were honored recently with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Achievement Awardfrom the California Department of Pesticide Regulation. Their work is looking into biosolarization, a process that combines the sun’s heat with soil amendments, to manage weeds and other soil-borne pests.
UC Davis Dairy earns top honor from Hilmar Cheese Company—again!
The UC Davis Dairy has earned Hilmar Cheese Company’s “Cream of the Crop” trophy, awarded to producers of the highest quality milk supplied to the company. The dairy has been among the top 10 producers for Hilmar in 12 of the last 14 years, and this marks the fourth time the UC Davis Dairy has won the top award.
“Being honored with the Hilmar’s ‘Cream of the Crop’ trophy speaks volumes of the care and attention to detail the animal science dairy team takes,” said Anita Oberbauer, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences associate dean for agricultural sciences. “Under the management leadership of Doug Gisi, the UC Davis Dairy had a perfect year in shipping quality milk. Winning once is an honor; winning four times is amazing and something our staff and students should take great pride in.”
Each year Hilmar Cheese Company recognizes milk suppliers for shipping the highest quality milk from December through November of the previous year. High-quality milk is the most important ingredient in the production of high-quality dairy products—cheese, whey protein and lactose.
“Hilmar Cheese Company appreciates the extra time and effort spent daily on milk quality at all of the dairy farms who ship their milk to our facilities,” said Denise Skidmore, a spokesperson for the company.
The 60-year-old UC Davis Dairy Teaching and Research Facility, located on campus, has a herd of 105 cows that are milked two times a day with modern equipment. The herd—75 percent Holsteins and 25 percent Jersey cows—averageswell above 27,500 pounds of milk per cow annually.
Many formal classes use the dairy facility and its animals throughout the year. Besides these courses, students can enroll in independent studies and internships to gain practical experience in various aspects of dairy management. Students even have the opportunity to live and work in the dairy facility.
The Hilmar Cheese Company is located in the San Joaquin Valley community of Hilmar. The company specializes in the production of cheddar and American-style cheeses utilized by private label and national brand companies.