On September 23, 2016, the Marc Neil Soudijn Research Foundation presented a $50,000 check to the University of Florida Institute of Food & Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) in support of citrus greening research. The gift was made in honor of Mr. Marc Soudijn, an alumnus of the university’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS), and his passion for the Florida citrus industry.
Citrus greening is a bacterial disease that causes fruit to remain green and bitter. The disease has become a serious threat to the Florida citrus industry, contaminating groves throughout the state. Researchers are still searching for an effective cure for this disease, which is also known as HLB.
The Soudijn Foundation’s donation will specifically be directed toward Dr. Yu Wang’s citrus flavor chemistry research program, which focuses on aroma and taste of fruits and herbs. Flavor chemistry is an often overlooked segment of citrus greening research, and the hope is that Dr. Wang’s research may reveal ways to make use of fruit from groves touched by citrus greening.
Dr. Michael Rogers, Director of the UF/IFAS Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC), accepted the check from the foundation’s president, Arthur Soudijn, at the 2016 International Citrus and Beverage Conference in Clearwater, Florida.