N.C. PSI + PHHI + NCFIL = The Strategic Triad
November 19, 2021
Bringing nutritious and delicious plant-based foods from seed to a consumer’s table involves multiple, complex processes. Expertise and innovative technology is necessary for processes like figuring out how to breed nutritionally improved varieties in multiple environmental and soil conditions while maintaining bioavailability of plant compounds, taste, and flavor. Working independently to address all of these challenges demands significant time, talent and resources. Simply put, it’s inefficient to tackle them alone.
The strategic triad of N.C. PSI, PHHI, and NCFIL brings together the latest research, resources, and expertise in agriculture and plant processing. This collaboration of government, academia, and industry aims to effectively and efficiently overcome the challenges associated with successful food production and healthier human consumption options. Let’s take a closer look at each of the three partners.
N.C. PSI: Improving the World Through Plant Science Innovation
With its mission to improve the world through plant science innovation, N.C. PSI, located on NC State’s Centennial Campus in Raleigh, is dedicated to researching and finding solutions to grand agricultural challenges. Through interdisciplinary, team-based science, their goals include increasing crop yields, creating new varieties, extending growing seasons, enhancing agricultural and environmental sustainability, and producing new and improved technology.
Percy: First N.C. PSI Director
On November 1, 2021, Adrian Percy started his role as the first executive director of N.C. PSI. Percy says he was “drawn to N.C. PSI for its strong potential to positively impact agriculture and society. I have always sought opportunities to be part of transformational change in the food and agricultural sector, and this initiative certainly qualifies.
Percy is considered one of the world’s top leaders in the agricultural field. “Adrian Percy is a great hire for the Executive Director position of the N.C. PSI,” Bill Aimutis, Executive Director of NCFIL, comments. “Adrian and I interacted in our past lives while he was at Bayer and I at Cargill. He'll bring a great industrial perspective to this position and together with Mary Ann Lilla, the Strategic Triad will build a solid roadmap for the future of NC State and plant-based agriculture."
Richard Linton, dean of NC State University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS), adds “Adrian has a keen understanding of the strategies needed to promote agricultural innovation and a dedicated interest to translate this scientific information to farmers and the agricultural industry."
PHHI: Plant-Based Solutions to Advance Human Health
PHHI focuses on research and extension programs. PHHI is located at the North Carolina Research Campus in Kannapolis, where eight universities have a presence to collaboratively pursue improved human health nutrition and clinical research. PHHI is part of CALS, with faculty members from five academic departments building an interdisciplinary team. Their research is centered on understanding and enhancing the health-protective value of food crops through fields such as epigenetics, genomics and postharvest physiology. PHHI’s mission is to lead the discovery and delivery of innovative plant-based solutions to advance human health.
NCFIL: America’s Plant-Based Food Processing Partner
NCFIL, also located at the NC Research Campus in Kannapolis, is a state-of-the-art food manufacturing pilot plant dedicated to plant-based food research, production, and commercialization. With the latest equipment and leading food scientists, NCFIL is prepared to support plant-based food innovation, including research projects from N.C. PSI and PHHI. They are always looking to partner with established food companies as well as entrepreneurs to develop, test and get their products to market quickly and effectively.
Accelerate, Collaborate, Formulate
From seed and soil to production and consumer nutrition benefits, NC State’s strategic triad works collaboratively to address grand challenges surrounding feeding our global population.
- Accelerate the discovery, education, innovation and outreach of plant food science and production
- Collaborate with our stakeholders to get to market quicker, more efficiently with the added benefit of human health science and research
- Formulate teams of expertise from interdisciplinary programs
The resources of the N.C. PSI, NCFIL and PHHI provide local and multinational food manufacturers access to shared research, food processing programs, and human health sciences to produce plant-based foods of the future in North Carolina. This multidisciplinary approach combines the world’s best and brightest agricultural researchers, food scientists, engineers and innovators dedicated to research, teaching and extension.
Interested in learning more? Contact Celeste Brogdon at firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-515-7857.