Food Systems Innovation Center
The Food Systems Innovation Center (FSIC) is a multi-disciplinary program designed to aid Kentucky’s food entrepreneurs. The FSIC is a collaborative effort between the Department of Animal and Food Science and Agricultural Economics, with associate members in the Department of Dietetics and Human Nutrition and the Department of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering. The FSIC offers a variety of services such as shelf-life determination, microbial analysis and challenge studies, nutritional label analysis, sensory evaluation, and marketing resources. All with the goal of aiding Kentucky’s food entrepreneurs produce safe, wholesome, legal food products. Clients are vetted through Kandice Williams, FSIC Coordinator, to determine their needs and then are directed to the appropriate faculty members within the FSIC. Although the FSIC is designed to aid Kentuckians, it has helped food marketers in Ohio, Tennessee, Indiana, California, and Nevada.
Education is an important part of the Food Systems Innovation Center. Agricultural Economics offers the MarketReady workshop, which outlines the steps needed to introduce a product into the marketplace. In addition, the FSC regularly offers Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) trainings and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Better Process Control Schools. These food safety workshops/trainings are mandatory for the production of many FDA and USDA regulated foods.