We are saddened to announce the passing of Dr. William Powrie, Emeritus Professor, and former Department Head, Food Science. Dr. Powrie passed away peacefully on May 30, 2013.
Dr. Powrie joined UBC in 1969 as Professor and Head of the newly-formed Department of Food Science. His research focused on the assessment of the safety of food and on food preservation. Among projects that he undertook on food toxicology were ones on paralytic shellfish poisoning and on mutagens and carcinogens in food. Projects on post-harvest biotechnology involved the modified atmosphere storage and packaging of fruit, after his research group discovered in the early 1980s that the shelf-life of small berries such as blueberries and raspberries could be extended by slowing the metabolic processes.
Dr Powrie resigned as Head in 1989 and retired from the Faculty in 1991. A graduate scholarship was named in his honour, the W.D. Powrie Scholarship in Food Science, awarded annually. Following official retirement Dr Powrie continued research and development on modified atmosphere packaging of fruits and vegetables and served as Senior Vice-President of SunBlush Technologies Corp., a Toronto-based company with UBC patents for this technology.
Family and friends are invited to share in an open house celebration of Bill’s life on Sat, June 8 from 3 – 6 pm at the Powrie home in North Vancouver.