The American Dairy Products Institute (ADPI), Elmhurst, Ill., said it selected David Barbano, Ph.D., as its 2018 Award of Merit honoree. The Award of Merit was established in 1991 to recognize individuals who have made a significant difference in the processed dairy products industry.

Barbano is a professor in the Department of Food Science at Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.; director of the Northeast Dairy Foods Research Center; and fellow of the American Dairy Science Association and Association of Official Analytical Chemists, ADPI noted.

Barbano received his Bachelor of Science degree in biology/food science in 1970, his Master of Science degree in food science in 1973, and his doctorate in food science in 1978 — all at Cornell University. He then joined the university’s Department of Food Science as an assistant professor in 1980, ADPI said. Since then, Barbano has dedicated nearly four decades as a faculty member in a distinguished career of dairy science and technology, teaching, research and extension.

His research has focused on both the basic and applied aspects of the chemistry and processing of dairy foods and ingredients. His team's work has resulted in improvements in dairy science knowledge, including a better understanding and use of infrared milk testing, factors influencing the economics of dairy product manufacture, membrane processing of milk, chemistry of milk and cheese, and farm management practices on dairy manufacture and product quality, ADPI said.

His special ability to conduct work applicable to the dairy industry and to work with the industry to solve problems has been another hallmark of Barbano’s achievements, from which many dairy companies and organizations have benefitted. He has truly "extended" his work to the industry through his frequent visits to dairy plants, presentations at industry meetings and service to professional societies and trade organizations of the dairy industry, ADPI said.

Barbano’s mentoring of generations of dairy industry professionals is another major lasting, impactful part of his work. His students have carried on his passion and commitment to dairy food processing, science and technology as research and development scientists, plant managers, industry consultants and professors in the United States and abroad, ADPI noted. His industry service and scientific accomplishments have been recognized with numerous regional, national and international awards.