The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is seeking to establish a Center of Excellence for School Food Safety Research, subsequently to be referred to as the Center, to provide science-based support to improve the safety of foods provided through the FNS nutrition assistance programs, particularly those served in schools and child care settings.
The Center will be established at a university that has an interdisciplinary group of faculty available to address food safety issues, including but not limited to, expertise in food safety, food microbiology, foodservice management, agricultural production (both livestock and plants), psychology, sociology, research design, and statistics. The Center will address current food safety research needs identified by FNS and Center personnel, demonstrate flexibility in addressing these needs, and provide the level of staffing to deliver timely results. The Center will be funded for a minimum of two years, with continuation depending on availability of funds and Center performance.
The annual funding will be contingent on the level of funding provided to the FSS. Once established, the Center would be encouraged to seek funding from other sources, consistent with the mission of the Center. Performance will take place at the funded university. Center staff will work closely with FSS to accomplish the goals of the Center and specific projects. FSS may serve as technical advisors and may serve as co-principal investigators on specific projects as appropriate.