2012 IFT Fellows
, Professor, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon. Zhao was recognized for her expertise and innovative research in edible films/coatings and the safety and quality of fruits and vegetables during postharvest storage and processing.
Zhao is internationally known for her development and characterization of antimicrobial edible films/coatings and biodegradable packaging products made from agricultural byproducts. Her research is focused on post-harvest technologies that enhance the quality, microbial safety, nutraceutical properties, and extended shelf life of fruits and vegetables. Through competitive grants and industrial contracts, she has increased the knowledge base of edible films/coatings and developed novel approaches for value-added fruit and vegetable products. She has effectively integrated her research into outreach programs to assist the processed fruit and vegetable industry in the production of safe, wholesome, and value-added fruit and vegetable products. An active member of IFT since 1991, Zhao has served on various IFT committees, including serving as Chair of the Peer Reviewed Communication Committee and Chair of the Fruit and Vegetable Products Division.