Rick Falkenberg, Ph.D. - Candidate for Director

Rick Falkenberg, Ph.D., is a Lifetime Member of Phi Tau Sigma, a Process Authority and Senior Principal Scientist, and the Founder/Managing Partner Food Safety and Management Group, Inc. He has also founded Scientific Air Solutions Full-Service Food Safety and Microbiological Laboratory consulting services. Rick received his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of California, San Diego further identifying the correlation between hexose-monophosphate shunt, glycolytic system and fermentation type in specific lactobacilli strains. Rick holds several patents, has authored several scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals as well as an expert content contributor to FDA, USDA-FSIS, CFIA and CODEX manufacturing operations. Rick was the Process Authority, Senior Principal Scientist and MRM Category Technical Manager at Nestlé Nutrition R&D Center where he implemented platform wide strategies for thermal processing (aseptic, retort and hot fill) effectiveness, assessment of competencies and training. He was a member of a cross functional team with Purina Pet Food, St. Louis (sister company), developing formulations and ingredient functionality for older pets (dogs and cats) as well as developing advanced protein extruded products in conjunction with other CPGs. Some of his key contributions included spearheading microbiological validation via actual data collection as well as modeling studies for Human and Pet Foods for FSMA compliance also to assure a high degree of Food Safety. He served as the Subject Matter Expert for Advanced Protein Extrusion, Human/Pet Foods, Thermal Process Sterilization, Thermal Bacteriology globally for Nestlé Nutrition and Model HACCP development for Nestle Nutrition factories worldwide. As the MRM Category Technical Manager, he was the point person in defining global manufacturing and ingredient strategy to deliver ingredients specifications and product recipes quickly to assure “speed to market”. Rick has been a member of the Phi Tau Sigma Membership and Qualifications Committee for several years, and member and current Chair of the Constitution and Bylaws Committee. He has been a contributing member of the Nonthermal Processing Division of the Institute of Food Technologists and the European Federation of Food Science and Technology. As well as a member of the Annual Meeting Scientific Advisory Panel and a contributing member of the Division Leaders Collaboration Group. Rick is also the Co-Chair of the Microbiological Committee for the Institute of Thermal Process Specialists as well as a member of International Association for Food Protections, Microbiological Modeling and Risk Analysis PDG as well as Hygiene and Sanitation PDG. Vision for ΦΤΣ: I would be honored and pleased to serve on the Board of Directors of Phi Tau Sigma. My personal and professional goals align with the mission of Phi Tau Sigma by recognizing scholarly achievements of the Food Science and Technology profession and committing to continuous improvement. As a Society of accomplished elected members and leaders on the frontier of food sciences, it is very important for Phi Tau Sigma to continue to position itself to be relevant as an organization for the next generations of students and professionals. As a Director, I will utilize my diverse, experience and connections to contribute to the leadership team toward improving future sustainability and recognition of the science of food as the basis for technology and to advance the understanding of our food science profession. I am actively involved in Coaching/Mentoring/Development of the food industry individuals and have developed many successful Quality/Food Safety professionals. Being an active and life-long member of Phi Tau Sigma, I endorse young professionals by being a seasoned model for them to be able to promote excellence in food science and technology.