Popeye’s Visits Clemson University
Contributed by Alexa Weeks
Marshall Scarborough and Darrin Weiss of Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen spoke to
more than 25 Clemson University Food, Nutrition, and Packaging Science students on April 8, 2013. They walked the students through the product development process at Popeye’s explaining how a project will often begin with ideation on Marshall’s side and will transition to commercialization on Darrin’s side.
Darrin spoke about potential hazards, regulatory compliance and allergens in both the U.S. and abroad that must be taken into consideration when developing products for a global brand. Both shared some of their favorite projects, trials they’ve faced and how mistakes can sometimes turn into inspiration for new products.
Networking between students and industry professionals is invaluable, especially in the food industry where a casual introduction can lead to an interview for an internship that can turn into a full time position.
“Six years ago I was sitting in the chair where you guys are sitting,” said Marshall, as he emphasized the importance of getting involved with organizations like the Research Chefs Association.
The Clemson students were very appreciative of Marshall and Darrin for taking time out of their busy schedule and look forward to visiting Popeye’s headquarters this fall.
RCA student members, Chad Carter and Alexa Weeks, invited Marshall to speak at Clemson after Chad met Marshall at the 2010 RCA Annual Awards Luncheon in Atlanta, GA. RCA members continually collaborate and enthusiastically teach fellow members about their trade keeping the organization at the forefront of food R&D.
Clemson University offers a newly integrated Food, Nutrition, and Packaging Science (FNPS) program where students can obtain a Bachelor’s of Science in either Food Science or Packaging Science. On the Food Science side, a student can choose between two concentration areas, either Food Science and Technology or Nutrition and Dietetics. Students that choose Food Science and Technology can pick one of a variety of emphasis areas including Food and Agricultural Engineering, Food Packaging, Human Nutrition and Culinary Science (Culinology®).