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Gabriel Hartman ’22 Named ‘Big E’ FFA Star in Agriscience

Courtesy: Cumberland Valley FFA. Gabriel Hartman '22, a Delaware Valley University food science major.

Sep 26, 2018

Gabriel Hartman '22, a Delaware Valley University food science major, was named the winner of the “Big E” FFA Star in Agriscience competition at the 2018 Eastern States Exposition in Springfield, Massachusetts.

The purpose of the “Big E” Stars program is to promote and encourage excellence in the National FFA Organization through the development of outstanding scholarship, leadership, and Supervised Agricultural Experiences (SAEs). Stars are recognized in the following areas: Star Farmer (Ag Production), Star in Agribusiness, Star in Agricultural Placement (Ag Employment), or Star in Agriscience (Research/Science). Participants must have received the State Award in their respective state prior to competing at the Big E.

Hartman qualified in the Agriscience category because his SAEs were based in food science research. Over the past three years, he developed a fruit granulation procedure to create granulate that can be utilized in baked goods to extend shelf life and increase the palatability of food products. He hopes to continue his research over the next three years and pursue a patent for his process. Hartman was named the Pennsylvania FFA Star in Agriscience in January 2018 and competed against four other state stars to win the “Big E” Star title.

Hartman also presented his 2018 Agriscience project at the Big E FFA Science Fair and placed first overall in the competition. His project is titled “The Effects of Fresh Fruit Additive versus Preserved Fruit Additive on Bacterial Growth on Muffins.” He will present this research at the National FFA Agriscience Fair in Indianapolis in October 2018. 

Hartman graduated from Cumberland Valley High School in 2018 and was heavily involved in FFA in high school. He served as the chapter treasurer and chapter reporter and also was the recipient of the 2018 Dekalb Award for academic and agricultural excellence. Hartman was also a member of the 2018 State Champion Milk Quality & Products team and placed first individually in the contest. He will be competing in this contest and presenting his state-winning Agriscience project at the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana in October 2018.