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DAA: John H. Nelson

John H. Nelson

, | Distinguished Ag Alumni: 1993

Dr. Nelson is vice president of science and technology for McCormick and Company, Inc. in Hunt Valley, Maryland. As such, he has responsibility for all research, development, and quality assurance programs for the largest spice and seasoning company in the world. McCormick and Company has purchasing, manufacturing, or sales operations in more than 7 5 countries. He joined the company in 1986 as corporate director of research and development. Dr. Nelson is a recognized authority in cereal science, starch chemistry, and food flavorings. He started as a research biochemist with General Mills in 1955. Over the course of his career he has managed research and development divisions with General Mills, Peavey Company, and American Maize Products Company. He served as Operating Manager of the International Venture Research subsidiary with Peavey before joining American Maize in 1978. Dr. Nelson was vice president for corporate development, then chief operating officer for the Roman Meal Company in the years just prior to his move to McCormick & Company. Dr. Nelson has served his profession as treasurer, national director, and president of the American Association of Cereal Chemists. As national president he organized the association’s Japan Section. He is also a member of the Institute of Food Technologists and has served as chairman for the National Program and Long Range Planning Committees. Dr. Nelson was president and director of the League for International Food Education. He is involved with Project SUSTAIN, a joint effort between industry and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). They assist developing countries with the scientific knowledge and technologies to improve the quality, safety, and availability of low-cost processed foods. He has advised USAID on food industry issues in a number of developing countries. Dr. Nelson has also served academia as a member of Advisory Committees at the Universities of Minnesota, Illinois, North Dakota State, Maryland, and Towson State (Towson, Maryland). He is a current member of the Industrial Advisory Committee for Purdue’s Food Science Department.