Food Research Institute History

The Food Research Institute (FRI) was founded at the University of Chicago in 1946 by Dr. Gail Dack with the support of a number of food industry sponsors who foresaw the potential for food safety problems.

In 1966, FRI moved to the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences in the UW-Madison. Since its inception, FRI has focused primarily on the microbiology of foodborne disease and serves as a center for food safety research, education, training, outreach, and service. Collaboration in FRI’s multidisciplinary basic and applied research program involves scientists from many departments at UW-Madison, other universities, government agencies, and the food industry. International collaboration is highly promoted and supported by UW-Madison, and FRI has had the privilege to work with scientists and students from many different countries. As well, its faculty and staff include many from diverse cultural backgrounds.

In October 2007, FRI moved into the Microbial Sciences building, a state-of-the-art research facility that our staff help plan throughout the design.

ARYZTACampbell Soup CompanyConAgra FoodsFonterraGeneral MillsGreat Lakes CheeseHormel Foods (Jennie-O Turkey Store)Johnsonville Foods KelloggKerry Ingredients and FlavoursKraft Foods (Oscar Mayer Foods)Leprino FoodsPepsiCoSchreiber Foods