October 17, 2019–Mark Ritenour

Topic: Keeping fresh fruit “fresh” after harvest.

Dr. Mark Ritenour is a Professor and plant physiologist with the University of Florida since 1998 and is stationed at Indian River Research and Education Center in Fort Pierce, Florida. He specializes in the postharvest physiology and handling of fresh fruits and vegetables (primarily citrus) with Extension, research, and teaching programs focusing on improving pre- and postharvest practices to maximize delivered fresh fruit quality and ways to overcome potential market barriers (both domestic and international).

Mark coordinates the annual Packinghouse Day, and other training events and is active developing and providing grower/packer/shipper training in good food hygiene practices that assure consumers safe fruits and vegetables. He is a Lead Instructor for the Food Safety Preventive Control Alliance training curriculum and a trainer in the Produce Safety Alliance curriculum. He is co-instructor of two UF postharvest courses: 1) Principles of Postharvest Horticulture, and 2) Postharvest Technologies for Horticultural Crops. Finally, he created and maintains the UF Postharvest Resources Website (http://irrec.ifas.ufl.edu/postharvest/) that includes links to numerous postharvest resources.

Bachelor of Science degree in Botany/Plant Physiology from California State University, Fresno in 1989
Master of Science from UC Davis in Vegetable Crops, 1991
Ph.D. from UC Davis in Integrated Plant and Crop Physiology, 1995

Our meetings include an educational program, a plant auction, plant raffle, and a tasting table of fruit in season. Please bring any extra fruit from your garden to share and give people a chance to experience new tastes and know what fruit they might want to grow.

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