The Achievement Award

Keith Underwood

The American Meat Science Association (AMSA) has announced that three AMSA members are the recipients of the Distinguished Achievement Award. The award was established in 1992 and is designed to recognize and foster the development of young AMSA members who have demonstrated significant scientific skills in muscle foods research and technology that contribute to the animal products industry and the AMSA. The award is sponsored by Burke Corporation.

Keith Underwood
Dr. Keith Underwood is an associate professor in the Department of Animal Science at South Dakota State University. He has been involved in the livestock industry from an early age, with youth projects in market hogs and his family’s commercial beef herd. He received his B.S. in Animal Science from Texas Tech University in 2002, and his M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Wyoming. While working on his graduate education, Dr. Underwood coached the Meat Judging Teams and served as a Western Director for the AMSA Student Board of Directors.
In 2009, Dr. Underwood joined the faculty at South Dakota State University in the Department of Animal Science. His research has covered many topic areas, however each has been focused on meeting the demands of the agriculture industry. His research interests include understanding growth and development of adipose tissue in various phases in beef cattle, the use of natural enzymes in kiwi fruit to improve tenderness, and determining the influence of maternal nutrition of development on bovine muscle and adipose tissue. He has 20 peer-reviewed journal publications and advises graduate students at SDSU.
Dr. Underwood has been very active in expanding a variety of extension programs to further meet the needs of producers, packers, processors and consumers. He has continued the Beef 20/20 program designed to give beef producers an understanding of harvest, fabrication and processing of beef. He also initiated the BBQ Bootcamp program that has educated hundreds of South Dakota residents on proper cooking, cut selection and food safety.
These AMSA members are exemplary young scholars, and their dedications to the industry make them outstanding candidates for the AMSA Distinguished Achievement Award.

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