STORIES in Agriculture and Life Sciences


Bill LaGrange always considered that his work as an Extension food scientist was, at its core, about helping people do their jobs to their utmost ability. "I loved working with people in processing plants, regulatory agencies and scientific organizations related to the food industry. Plus, those flavor evaluations at 10 a.m. at Sara Lee's plant in New Hampton was icing on the cake," he says with a smile. For four decades LaGrange offered extension programs to help with food safety, regulatory requirements, quality testing methods, product packaging and facility management. "I worked with everyone from the food plant executives to the folks cleaning the floors," he says. LaGrange ('53 dairy industry, PhD '59 food microbiology) helped the Iowa food processing industry change, as consolidation became the norm and the norm the number of facilities in Iowa decreased. The remaining plants increased in processing capacity and product volume.