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Professor and Assistant Department Head 

Horticulture and Crop Science Department

California Polytechnic State University


Dr. Brown is a professor and the assistant department head for the Horticulture and Crop Science Department where he has taught for 28 years. He came to Cal Poly from LSU via Cornell after spending 7 years training as a postharvest technologist/physiologist. He currently teaches the courses Postharvest Technology of Horticulture Crops, Introduction to Vegetable Science, and California Vegetable Production. Dr. Brown's research interests center on pre-cut fruits and vegetables, plastics and modified-atmosphere packaging.


Over the last 16 years, he has conducted studies involving broccoli and cauliflower florets; sliced green onions; pre-cut artichokes, sweet potatoes, apples and lemons; whole strawberries; pre-cut pineapple; chopped cilantro and whole herbs. His research on anti-browning compounds for pre- cut produce has resulted in a recently conferred patent. His current research involves evaluating transit and retail temperatures for pre-cut leafy greens, characterizing and testing biodegradable films for packaging, evaluating migrants from plastics due to sealing or during microwaving, evaluating plastics for heavy metal content, and determining the potential migration of heavy metals from plastics during the storage and microwaving of pre-cut products.


Dr. Brown was designated the Outstanding Faculty Researcher by the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences for 2013-14, and was named a University Distinguished Scholar for 2014-15.

Contact Information

Horticulture and Crop Science Department

California Polytechnic State University

San Luis Obispo, California 93407, USA


Phone: (805) 756-6137  I  Email:

Latest Posts


Study of total extractives compliance (Code of Federal Regulations 21CFR177.1630) of polyethylene terephthalate rigid containers and the migration of contaminants from the packaging which can adversely affect food quality giving it off-odors and flavors, the contaminants may also be toxic.

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