UF horticultural sciences chairman receives prestigious honor for international work

By:
Tom Nordlie (352) 392-0400

Source:
Dan Cantliffe djc@ifas.ufl.edu, 352-392-1928 ext. 203

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Dan Cantliffe, horticultural sciences chairman at the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, or UF/IFAS, is well known on campus for his international research collaborations, and now the world’s leading independent organization of horticultural scientists has taken notice as well.

This month, the 6,300-member International Society for Horticultural Science inducted Cantliffe as a fellow – the highest honor ISHS bestows for contributions to horticultural science worldwide. He is one of only six individuals so recognized.

The induction took place during the 27th International Horticultural Congress and Exhibition in Seoul, South Korea, Aug. 13-19.

“Receiving the award was very exciting, particularly from the standpoint of what it means to be chosen for a major award that’s international in nature,” said Cantliffe, a UF faculty member since 1974.

Cantliffe received a second honor during the ceremony, the ISHS Medal, presented in appreciation of his work as chairman of the organization’s vegetable section for the past eight years.

The fellowship selection process requires letters of support from at least five colleagues in three nations and approval by the organization’s council, which includes representatives from each of ISHS’s more than 140 member nations.

Cantliffe’s international work includes extensive research and outreach on protected agriculture, a high-tech, high-yield approach to growing fruits and vegetables in greenhouses. Popular in Europe, the Middle East, Canada, Mexico, China, Korea and Japan, protected agriculture enables year-round production yet conserves resources and minimizes pesticide use.

Cantliffe has developed formal collaborative relationships with institutions in Brazil, Israel, Italy and Korea. While promoting protected agriculture in Florida, Cantliffe has introduced growers to two crops developed in Israel: Galia muskmelons and Beit Alpha cucumbers. Last year he was named a UF/IFAS International Fellow.

Global connections have brought the horticultural sciences department a wealth of international students, something Cantliffe considers the greatest reward of his work with other nations. He has trained more than 50 graduate students, who hail from various countries.

The ISHS award may attract greater attention to the department from scholars around the world, which can only benefit UF, he said.

“The viewpoints we get from having these connections are absolutely phenomenal. Today, probably the most important factor in any science or business endeavor is the international aspect.”

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Posted: August 31, 2006


Category: UF/IFAS



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