Global Food Opportunities Seminar

The Global Food Opportunities Seminar (GFOS)is a seminar focused on bringing diverse intellectual content through a global context. The intention of these seminars is to bring an expert in to a department to work with faculty and students. While on campus, these experts give a 45 to 50 minute seminar on an international topic or issue of importance, followed by a question and answer session. Typically, one to two students present with the invited guest. These students will highlight their international experience in five minutes. Students are invited based on the lecture topic, and also participate in the Q&A session.

For more information regarding the GFOS Seminar, please contact Dr. Leslie Edgar at

Previous Global Food Opportunities Seminars

Martin Gummert - 

Mr. Gummert received his diploma in agricultural engineering from Hohenheim University, in Germany in 1991. Since that time, he has worked as an apprentice, research assistant, researcher, project coordinator, team leader, and a consultant with various organizations. Currently, Mr. Gummert serves as a Senior Scientist 2 in postharvest development and mechanization at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), which is located in the Philippines. He began working for IRRI from 1993 to 1997 as a coordinator for the project “Postharvest Technologies for Rice in the Humid Tropics.”  In November 2003 Mr. Gummert began as an International Research Fellow in Postharvest Development. Mr. Gummert has 12 publications in peer-reviewed journals, 4 book chapters, and 21 published conference presentations. He holds many professional memberships including the Asian Association of Agricultural Engineers. In 2010, Mr. Gummert received a medal “For the Cause of Agricultural and Rural Development, Vietnam” by the Vietnam Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Elizabeth Mitcham - 

Dr. Elizabeth Mitcham is director of the Horticulture Innovation Lab (, a USAID-funded program managed by the University of California, Davis, that advances fruit and vegetable research to support the needs of smallholder farmers in developing countries. As part of the U.S. government’s Feed the Future initiative, the program has collaborated with more than 18 U.S. universities and 200 organizations in Latin America, Africa, and Asia with projects spanning the horticultural value chain. Mitcham is also a postharvest physiologist on the faculty of the UC Davis Department of Plant Sciences and has helped train professionals from more than 40 countries as one of the leaders of the Postharvest Technology Center.