UW-Stout Food Science Programs Dish Up Success

UW-Stout Food Science Programs Dish Up Success

ABOVE PHOTO: Brakebush foods in Westfield has plants in four states and processes about 10,000 pounds of chicken an hour. It distributes a variety of products to customers around Wisconsin and the U.S.

“Food manufacturing is everywhere in Wisconsin,”

Wisconsin’s calling card can be found all over the state. Vehicle license plates proclaim America’s Dairyland, and from Lake Superior to the Illinois border 6,300 dairy farms and 100 cheese factories dot the countryside — along with plenty of cheese shops.

All that cheddar, gouda, mozzarella and 600 more varieties make Wisconsin No. 1 in the U.S. for cheese production and boost it to No. 8 for food processing overall, according to the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. The state has 3,700 food and beverage companies employing more than 100,000 people, including operations for seven of the world’s 10 largest food manufacturers, such as Nestle and Kraft Heinz.

To grow the robust food production economy in a tight job market, Wisconsin needs every one of its 1,200 licensed cheesemakers but also much more. Filling one part of the industry’s skilled workforce needs are University of Wisconsin-Stout graduates — such as research and development leaders Nick Radzinski at Brakebush foods and Emily Maier at Ellsworth Cooperative Creamery — from the bachelor’s and master’s food science and technology programs.

“Food manufacturing is everywhere in Wisconsin,” Radzinski said.


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