The partnership between the university and the company includes a $7.5 million gift toward construction the JBS Global Food Innovation Center and $5 million for employee educational programming. Named in honor of CSU professor emeritus Gary Smith, who spent more than twenty years as a professor in the university's Department of Animal Sciences, and his late wife, Kay, the facility will bolster CSU's teaching and research in meat sciences and offer a space for meaningful dialogues that advance the animal agriculture industry as well as continuing education and training aimed at advancing best practices in food safety, meat sciences, and animal handling and welfare. The facility will include an educational space designed by noted CSU professor Temple Grandin, as well as spaces dedicated to the testing of new food product packaging, a culinary kitchen, and a retail meat and dairy store with a cafe.
"We have had a longstanding research and academic partnership with JBS, and this gift will allow us to cement that relationship for years to come," said College of Agricultural Sciences dean Ajay Menon. "This facility is designed to provide our students with hands-on experiences that will position them for careers in industry and academia, especially as they work alongside faculty members who are producing innovations in food safety, food security, and animal welfare."