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Beth Zuber

Elizabeth Zuber Midwest

The International Congress of Meat Science and Technology of 2019 was my first and hopefully not my last. As my first trip to a European country, I was excited to be traveling to Germany along with many other meat scientists from across the globe. In anticipation for the congress, I was fortunate to be accepted to present my research on fresh pork quality with my poster titled “Influence of pH decline on Soluble Myosin Heavy Chain in Early Postmortem Porcine Skeletal Muscle”. Throughout my time in Germany, it was clear that both the meeting itself and the cultural interactions were experiences I would cherish and reflect of for years to come.

During my travel to and from Germany, my colleague and good friend Matt Schulte accompanied me. The flight to Berlin and tram ride to Potsdam was nearly seamless. Upon arriving to Potsdam, I began seeing familiar faces as meat scientists began congregate to the congress hotel on Sunday. The attendants gathered to enjoy traditional German food and drinks that evening. These gatherings gave me a great opportunity to be introduced to international professionals, advisors and students. The meetings in the days to follow were filled with evoking and important current meat topics, centered on ethics, sustainability, meat quality, animal production, and emerging technologies. Speakers represented institutions from every corner of the globe and promoted intelligent conversations and questions from the crowd. On Thursday, I was able to give a short presentation on my research and receive questions, alongside other students. We were allowed about 3 minutes to present our work. This was a challenging task, but we were able to keep the explanations and ideas short and sweet for the listeners.

As the week moved on, I began feeling more comfortable with the food and language barriers that accompanied my learning experiences in Germany. Technical tours on Wednesday offered a large array of travel and sight seeing. I chose “Program 5”, the Wittenberg tour, to see the historical Wittenberg castle church and educational sights on Martin Luther and the Reformation. Some social events included dinner and drinks at Markethalle, an exciting food court area in the heart of Berlin, as well as the Thursday night gala at the Kongrut Bornstedt. I loved the chance to mingle with speakers, professionals, and students outside of the congress itself, in a more relaxed setting.

Following the conference, Matt and I did some brief traveling around Northwest Germany before returning home. The travel home was easy, as I was more aware of the implications of a long flight and jet lag. With that, I hope to have several more opportunities to attend ICoMST in coming years, because of the great experiences I was able to have and even better people I was able to meet in Germany this year. With that being said, I am very thankful for any and all AMSA Scholarship opportunities, making this trip much easier to make. Many more memories and friendships were made through this trip, but this wouldn’t have been possible without the great scientists that are involved in the meat industry.

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