David A. Stuart Ph.D. is Founder and Principal of “Food & Nutrient Impact, LLC”, a located in Hershey PA focusing on research and advice on healthy foods, on cacao and on agricultural sustainability.
He holds a B.S. in Biology and minor in Chemistry from California State University, Sacramento. He earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in Botany and Plant Physiology from the University of California, Berkeley where he studied the biophysics of plant cell growth.
David earned an Executive Program degree in Agribusiness from the Smeal School of Business at The Pennsylvania State University in 1999.David worked for Plant Genetics, Inc. in Davis CA for eight years where he was leader of their cell biology, plant pathology and the genetic improvement programs. Work there was done in association with some familiar companies such as Kirin Breweries, McCormick Spices and Best Foods (now part of Unilever).
David began work at The Hershey Company in 1989 where he was a manager or director the Research and Development Department. His career there literally spanned Cocoa Bean to Chocolate Bar. He began as Manager of Biochemistry where he immediately became involved with cocoa, its genetics, biochemistry and field production. He was active as a leader in the Chocolate Industry’s Cocoa Biotechnology programs which have led to advances in variety cloning, new variety development and the Cocoa Genome which was published in 2010. Eight years ago, he developed the proposal leading to the Hershey Center for Health and Nutrition becoming Center Director. He led a group of nine Ph.D. scientists responsible for the characterization of the flavanol chemistry of cocoa, flavanols levels of market basket surveys, flavanol loss during processing, shelf stability of flavanols, clinical trials using commercially available dark chocolate and cocoa, product labeling and web-site development. He worked with national and international groups to set the standard testing protocols for these naturally occurring bioactive compounds. His area was also responsible for the development of new cocoa and high-flavanol ingredients for use in product development as well as studies on the absorption of flavanols into the blood stream and on the impact of these compounds on human metabolism. He was recently awarded the life-time achievement award by the National Confectioners Association for his contributions to the industry.
David has authored more than 35 publications, an inventor on eight patents, including 17 papers and published presentations since the Center was formed. He has also participated in numerous lectures at universities, presentations at meetings and at scientific conferences.
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