Senior Nutrition and Dietetics Student, Cornell University
Cornell Nutrition Health and Nutrition Society
When I first started school, I only had a vague idea of what the food industry encompassed. Popular culture had taught me that it was making children obese and killing America one grain of salt at a time. For the first half of my education, I went on with this idea in the back of my head, but never really gave the food industry much thought. It wasn’t until I had the opportunity to intern with a major food manufacturer that I was able to investigate these claims first hand.
I enthusiastically started my first day ready to save humanity, armed with whole grains in one hand and fiber in the other. Little did I know, that nutrition was not necessarily the company’s first priority. This is when I learned some very valuable lessons about the intersection of business and nutrition:
Taking these all into consideration, I learned the importance of creativity and enthusiasm in approaching nutrition in a business setting. It is a unique opportunity to apply a strong nutritional science background along with cross-functional areas including finance, communication, marketing and food science. This multidisciplinary approach is what drew me in and triggered my passion for consumer and retail nutrition. It is easy to get discouraged in this setting, but it is that much more fulfilling when you are able to impact the nutrition of products that reach millions of consumers on a daily basis. Like any industry, the business of food isn’t perfect, but I am so excited to be a part of making it better one product at a time.