'One California' Highlights Agricultural Partnerships

Aug 26, 2014 UC Davis Dateline Staff University of California, Davis
New advertising campaign shows partnerships and agricultural achievements.
'One California' Highlights Agricultural Partnerships

From our beginnings as the UC Farm School in 1908, we’ve taught and researched, pioneered and led. And we’ve collaborated with California agriculture for the good of the land and its sustainability.

"One UC Davis" puts the spotlight on California in a new campaign that demonstrates how the university and its industry partners nourish the state with food, economic activity and better health.

In the same way that “One UC Davis” celebrates the uniqueness of everyone connected to the university, "One California" recognizes our food and animal scientists, our students and alumni, farmers and ranchers and processors, and others working in California’s $45-billion-a-year agricultural industry.

Further, the campaign looks to a future of continued innovation, increased productivity and healthier living — by way of UC Davis’ new World Food Center.

“When someone asks, ‘Who will feed the world?’ — the answer is, ‘We will,’” said Roger Beachy, the center’s founding director, ever cognizant of a world population expected to hit 9 billion by 2050.

Who’s we? UC Davis’ top-ranked College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, and School of Veterinary Medicine and their partners — the California Poultry Federation, for example. Its president, Bill Mattos, shares the California poultry story every day, including UC Davis’ significant contributions in disease detection and surveillance, among many others.

We sum it up like this on a “One California” billboard: “When it comes to the health of chickens, we’re a real mother hen.”

Here’s what some of the other billboards say:

  • “Our sushi rice is used worldwide. Now that’s a California roll.”
  • “A cow that makes healthier milk? We couldn’t love that moooore.”
  • “Our tomatoes grace tables from here to Italy. Now that’s amoré.”

These billboards and others, about beef, almonds and strawberries, are being displayed up and down the Central Valley, starting in the Sacramento region; along the Central Coast; and around the Napa Valley.

The campaign also includes print ads; radio and TV spots; op-ed columns in local, state and national media; and a new “One California” website to amplify the message.

“We are growing California agriculture,” the website begins, as it invites people to learn more — in videos, news stories, profiles and more — about the synergy between farmers, ranchers and other producers, and UC Davis experts in agriculture and veterinary medicine.

As you’ll learn on the website, this special relationship has borne fruit year after year: “In fact, the partnership between agriculture and the university has been key to making our state the top national producer for more than 50 years. This accomplishment mirrors our own standing as the No. 1 agricultural program in the world.”

As California benefits, so does the world. “At UC Davis, we are using our world-class research in agriculture to contribute to global food security in a variety of ways, including breakthroughs in plant breeding to combat the threat of a new wheat disease, plus an unprecedented number of partnerships with the federal development assistance agency, USAID,” Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi wrote in an op-ed published July 26 in The Sacramento Bee.

The World Food Center, she said, will help UC Davis “leverage the impact of our cutting-edge research by convening innovators and leaders from industry, academic, government and nongovernmental organizations to tackle food-related challenges in California and around the world.”

UC Davis is also a participant, with all of the other UC campuses, in UC’s new Global Food Initiative, which “plays to UC Davis’ most noteworthy strengths and our core expertise,” Katehi said.

It all began in 1908 with the founding of the University Farm. In the 106 years since then, Katehi said, UC Davis has been deeply involved in the evolution of California’s agricultural economy, “exerting a huge influence on how crops are grown, fertilized, watered and protected against disease as that economy prospered.”

Today, the farm that became UC Davis is home to more than 400 faculty members focused on food issues, and 6,000 undergraduate and 1,000 graduate students in agriculture, ecology and food-related degree programs.

Some of those students do research with UC Davis alumni, among them brothers Louie ’77 and Frank Muller ’79, Yolo County farmers.

“Growing up, the college years were the big years,” Frank Muller says in a TV commercial that will be presented as part of the campaign. “Because what we learned there, we brought home.

“Today, we’re still improving our techniques, making it more productive and friendlier for the environment.”

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