University of California

Emerging Technologies: Addressing Grand Challenges in the Produce Industry

Emerging Technologies Poster 4 (1)


Dates: May 23 - 25, 2022

Location: University of California, Davis and Virtually

Registration: Click here


Course Information 

The UC Postharvest Technology Center, and The Department of Biological & Agricultural Engineering, in collaboration with the World Food Center at UC Davis, are hosting a workshop that will bring together academics, extension experts, and industry representatives to discuss and propose solutions to challenges (labor shortages, sustainability needs, consumer demands) facing the produce industry. The purpose is to identify critical needs to address these challenges, and lay out future directions in produce-handling technology.

The event will focus primarily on emerging technological solutions, and research and development activities that have the potential to revolutionize the way fresh produce is harvested, handled, stored, transported and distributed from farm to table. The aim is to create a produce supply chain that is prepared to ensure the integrity, safety and nutritional quality consumers desire in the modern age.
The workshop will be divided into several modules following a hybrid model, including keynote speeches, interactive activities and demonstrations. Selected research academics and industry representatives will highlight cutting-edge information on current produce trends, key challenges, and potential technological solutions.  In addition, a round table discussion for each module will be moderated by an extension expert that will enable a dialogue with the selected experts, with the goal of conceptualizing technological solutions to identified challenges. This workshop will be offered in person on the UC Davis campus and virtually.


Topics Included

  • Automation and robotics in harvest, postharvest handling, and processing applications.
  • Labor, human safety and ergonomics.
  • Non-destructive sensors to estimate produce quality, sort by quality, and reduce losses in the supply chain.
  • Real-time, in-storage and in-transit monitoring of critical parameters, including temperature, and relative humidity.
  • Cyber security and large data applications in the produce supply chain.
  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) approaches to modeling produce quality, nutritional value, and safety.


Target audience

Research and extension professionals; technical personnel responsible for quality and safety assurance, research and development in the produce industry; and business and government professionals interested in current advances in produce handling after harvest.




Dr. Irwin Donis-Gonzalez

Dr. Donis started working as an Assistant Postharvest Systems Engineering Specialist in Cooperative Extension, in the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering at UC Davis in October 12, 2015. At UC Davis he has focused his work in postharvest engineering, handling (storage, drying, etc.), none-invasive assessment, and processing of agricultural commodities with a goal of reducing energy consumption while ensuring food quality and safety. These are critical issues for the fresh market fruit and vegetable, dried fruit, tree nut, and rice industries in California and the World. 

For more information on technical content, please contact:

Dr. Irwin Donis-Gonzalez
Title: Assistant Postharvest Systems Engineering Specialist
Biological & Agricultural Engineering
3024 Bainer Hall, One Shield Av.
Davis, CA 95616
Phone: (530) 752-8986

For more registration information, please contact:

Pam Devine
Title: Administrative Officer
One Shields Avenue
3047 Wickson Hall
Davis, CA 95616
Phone: 530-752-6941


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