Melody Foess Raasch, DVM, MS, wins the 2012 Edward and Mary Mather Food Safety Student Award

By: 
Kristie Denbrock
Melody Saasch Photo
Melody Saasch, 2012 Mather Award Winner

Melody Foess Raasch, DVM, MS, was presented with the Edward and Mary Mather Food Safety Student Award from the Online Master of Science in Food Safety Program at Michigan State University for her research on pet food safety labeling. 

Raasch, Manager of Scientific Communications at P&G Pet Care in Mason, Ohio conducted her research requirement for the MS program by building a tool that measured the impact of a third party food safety/quality certification statement/seal on pet food packaging. The abstract of her research, “The Impact of a Food Safety Certification Statement and/or Seal on Pet Food Packaging,” is available.

“I am so pleased to receive this award and sincerely hope that my research will benefit the pet food industry and dogs and cats everywhere,” Raasch said, as she was presented the award from Mary Mather and Dr. Julie Funk, Director of the Online MS Program. She was given the award at the annual Robert Leader Endowed Lecture Series Dinner at The University Club on the MSU Campus, June 14.  Dr. Funk commented, “Melody’s project stood out to the panel members as a very original project that was well executed and well-written. Above all, the project addressed a key issue for food safety, the safety of pet foods.  Recent events regarding human illness associated with pet foods highlights the importance of safe animal feeds.”

The award is given to a graduating student who demonstrates the values of practical research, education and transdisciplinary learning in food safety which has been the corner stone of the program. The award is judged by a panel of food safety professors and experts at MSU. Raasch graduated with the Master of Science in Food Safety in December 2011.

In 1998, the late Edward Mather, DVM, PhD, began developing the Online Master in Science in Food Safety.  He started his career at MSU in 1978 as the Chair of Large Animal Clinical Sciences. After 14 years he became Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies. Dr. Mather retired from MSU in 2008 as professor emeritus and passed away in 2010.