University of Wisconsin at Madison Department of Food Science

Program Director: Dr. James L. Steele

Contact: Dr. Srinivasan Damodaran, Graduate Admissions, Department of Food Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1605 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53706


Degrees Offered: M.S., Ph.D.

Associated Fields and Departments: Program is interdisciplinary with Food Microbiology and Toxicology, Agriculture Engineering, Poultry Science and Chemical Engineering, Business School.


Program Description

Entrance Requirements: TOEFL 550 or Above; 3 Letters of Recommendation; Undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above; Official Copies of Transcripts; Written Statement of Purpose for Graduate Study; $38 Application Fee; GRE Scores (Verbal - 500+, Quantitative - 600+, Analytical - 500+)

Program of Study: Both M.S. and Ph.D. degree programs are offered. Specializations are offered in the areas of Food Science, Food Chemistry, Food Engineering, and Food Microbiology and Safety.

Graduate Requirements: M.S. requires a minimum of 14 credits and Ph.D. requires a minimum of 30 credits; must satisfy the residency requirement and author a thesis. Ph.D. candidates also are required to satisfactorily complete a program to develop teaching skills.

Statement of Costs: Tuition per semester (9-12 credits/semester) is (96-97) $2,187.45 residents; $6,647.95 nonresidents; $2,530.45 Minnesota reciprocity. Application fee $38.00.

Availability of Financial Aid: Teaching and research assistantships are available on a competitive basis.

Unique Capabilities: Dairy processing and pilot plants, sensory evaluation laboratory, structure/function of macromolecules laboratory, Center for Dairy Research, dairy biotechnology laboratory, Food Research Institute (Food Microbiology and Toxicology), fruit and vegetable processing laboratory and pilot plant, protein, flavor and enzyme laboratories, plant tissue culture, biohazard facilities, food engineering laboratory, access to green house facilities.

Faculty and Research Interests


S.C. Ingham, Ph.D. Asst. Prof. Food Safety Extension Specialist. Food microbiology. Role of pre-heat and post-heat environmental factors on the heat resistance of foodborne pathogens; applications of anaerobic methods in food quality assurance and safety evaluation.

J. Steele, Ph.D. Assoc. Prof. Dairy microbiology; genetics of lactic acid bacteria; plasmid; recombinant DNA technology. Instructor: Science of Food; Advanced Seminar.

F.S. Chu, Ph.D. Prof. Mycotoxins and phycotoxins in foods: detection, detoxification, immunochemical studies and mode of actions.

J.B. Luchansky, Ph.D. Assoc. Prof. Molecular analysis of foodborne pathogens. Identification, localization, and characterization of gene products involved with virulence. Biological systems for pathogen control.


M.R. Etzel, Ph.D. Assoc. Prof. Food and biochemical engineering; mass transfer and bioseparation processes; drying of foods and microorganisms; membrane bioseparations; protein purification.

R.W. Hartel, Ph.D. Prof. Food engineering/processing; separations; crystallization/ particulate processes.

S. Gunasekaran, Ph.D. Prof. Determining physical properties and quality factors of food materials and design of sensors and instrumentation for quality evaluation of food materials nondestructively. Rheological properties of cheese, heat and mass transfer applications; microwave processing of food materials, ultrasonic and image processing applications for food quality evaluation.

C.G. Hill, Jr. Ph.D. Prof. Applications of chemical engineering techniques and methodologies to problems of interest to the food scientist: immobilized enzyme reactors, membrane separation processes, chemical kinetics and catalysis.


R.L. Bradley, Jr. Ph.D. Prof. Processing and utilization of dairy foods, analytical methods of analysis; food product development; stabilization and emulsification of food systems; environmental toxicants in food products.

N.F. Olson, Ph.D. Prof. Chemistry and microbiology of food fermentation (especially cheese products); use of enzymes in food processing; impacts of bacteriological and enzymatic actions on chemical and physical properties of cheese.

W.L. Wendorff, Ph.D. Assoc. Prof. Extension Dairy Manufacturing Specialist. Technology of cheese systems; food product development; quality and environmental concerns in dairy industry; smoke processing technology.


S. Damodaran, Ph.D. Prof. Enzyme chemistry and technology; food chemistry; protein chemistry and technology.

R.C. Lindsay, Ph.D. Prof. Flavor chemistry; food chemistry; dairy and seafoods technology; sensory evaluations of foods.

K.L. Parkin, Ph.D. Assoc. Prof. Food chemistry, biochemistry and enzymology; postharvest physiology and preservation.

J.H. von Elbe, Ph.D. Prof and Chair, Chemistry and physical determination of color of foods; chemistry of plant pigments and color technology; food processing development.


A.J. Maurer, Ph.D. Prof. Processing and distribution of poultry meat, eggs, and derived products; factors affecting quality (microbiological, sensory, physical); and new product development.


Extension specialist in food management. Continuing education programs for professional home economists and consumers in food safety, food management and food economics.


J. Norback, Ph.D. Prof. Food systems management; optimization of food processes; integrating technological information on food handling and processing with managerial decision making.