October 19, 2022 | Council for Agricultural Science and Technology—Ames, Iowa
Since 2010, the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) has played a key role in the World Food Prize/Borlaug Dialogue, with its presentation of the Borlaug CAST Communication Award (BCCA). Well-respected researchers, diplomats, and academics have received the award, but all have one thing in common: they convey important information about food and agriculture to the public and policymakers alike.
The October 19 BCCA event honored the 2022 recipient, Dr. Martin Wiedmann. Dr. Wiedmann is the Gellert Family Professor of Food Safety, Department of Food Science in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University. He is currently an associate director at the Northeast Dairy Foods Research Center at Cornell University and co-director at the New York Integrated Food Safety Center of Excellence.
The award breakfast was held as a side-event to the 2022 World Food Prize at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines, Iowa. The breakfast award program included remarks from World Food Prize Foundation President Barbara Stinson as well as from Dr. Simon Liu, Acting Administrator of the USDA/ARS. Julie Borlaug, President of the Borlaug Foundation, reflected on Dr. Norman Borlaug’s legacy and his involvement with CAST.
Dr. Benjamin Houlton, the Ronald P. Lynch Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University, introduced Dr. Wiedmann. Dr. Wiedmann spoke on Beauty and risk: Thoughts on communicating food safety risks. He covered topics relating to how there is no such thing as zero risk, that everything is a trade-off, and how best to communicate food safety risks. He also made a point of saying, “Science cannot tell you what risks to take and what risks to avoid. It only can tell you how big different risks are, and how certain we are about the magnitude of risk.”
The Borlaug CAST Communication Award is presented annually for outstanding achievement by a scientist, engineer, technologist, or other professional working in the agricultural, environmental, or food sectors for contributing to the advancement of science in the public policy arena. The award is dedicated to Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, “The Man Who Fed the World,” and author of the first CAST publication in 1973, and to Dr. Charles A. Black, first CAST President, first executive vice president, and member of the founding committee of CAST.
CAST is an international consortium of scientific and professional societies, universities, companies, nonprofits, libraries, and individuals. CAST convenes and coordinates networks of experts to assemble, interpret, and communicate credible, unbiased, science-based information to policymakers, the media, the private sector, and the public.
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