New Food Industry Center Director at University of Minnesota

June 16/Minneapolis, Minn./US Fed News --Distinguished economist Robert King will become director of The Food Industry Center at the University of Minnesota next month. King, a professor and former head of the university's Department of Applied Economics, replaces the center's founding director, Jean Kinsey, who is retiring.

King's research focuses on local food systems, organic agriculture, and on management issues facing food retailers, farmer cooperatives and farmers. He teaches courses on managerial economics and cooperatives and helps advise Cornercopia, the university's student organic farm. He has been involved with numerous projects at the center since its founding in 1995 and has been a faculty member in the applied economics department since 1983.

The department and center also have hired a new associate director/associate professor, Timothy Beatty, who is internationally known for his work in consumer economics and consumer behavior, particularly as they relate to food and health. He currently teaches and does research at the University of York and for Statistics Norway. He earned his doctorate in agricultural and resource economics at the University of California, Berkeley. Kinsey, who joined the applied economics department in 1976, has been widely honored for her consumer behavior research and teaching and has been a member of the board of directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis as well as president of the American Agricultural Economics Association.

The Food Industry Center, based in the department of applied economics, is a collaboration of faculty, students, and industry leaders from across the nation and the world that address the issues of an efficient, ethical, healthy, and safe food system. The center addresses cross-sector issues through developing and disseminating data and analysis focused on how food moves from farm to fork. As part of the Industry Studies Association, it is the only industry studies research center that studies the food industry.

From the June 21, 2010, Prepared Foods E-dition