The Plants for Human Health Institute’s (PHHI) Pack ‘N Cool, a customizable mobile refrigeration unit for food products like fruits and vegetables, received a 2013 Blue Ribbon Extension Communication Award, presented by the Southern Region of the American Society of Horticultural Science (ASHS) for publications and materials that are novel applications or have generated impact with growers.
Pack ‘N Cool materials include a construction manual, video overview, detailed and sample budgets, and construction phase guidelines with photos, all available on the institute’s website on the Pack ‘N Cool page.
Dr. Penelope Perkins-Veazie, postharvest physiologist with PHHI, led a team of PHHI colleagues, including Jonathan Baros, Extension farm and agribusiness management; Justin Moore, Extension communications; and Louis Wojciechowski, research lab technician, which together was responsible for developing the unit and the supplemental resources. Perkins-Veazie and Wojciechowski spearheaded the design and construction of the model unit, while Baros compiled costs and developed the construction budgets. Moore coordinated the outreach component of the project, as well as the creation of the educational materials.
The Pack ‘N Cool combines the mobility of a cargo trailer with the refrigeration capabilities of a commercial cooler. The unit is also used as a training tool for N.C. State faculty and N.C. Cooperative Extension agents and specialists.
ASHS is the primary professional society for horticulture. The Southern Region reports that it is the most active ASHS contingent, with most of the leadership positions in the organization held by members from the South. N.C. State previously won a 2012 Blue Ribbon Extension Communication Award for the Blackberry and Raspberry Growers Information Portal.
About the Southern Region American Society for Horticultural Science
The Southern Region ASHS is a regional scientific society of the American Society for Horticultural Science. The Southern Region encompasses the 14 southern states of Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee. Membership is composed of research scientists, teachers and Extension specialists from universities, state, federal and private research organizations, and industry. Visit www.srashs.org for more information.
Writer: Justin Moore