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CSREES-funded Software Program Gains Accolades Nationwide

Children FightBAC! 2.0, an animated software program used to teach children the basics of food safety, received an Association of Educational Publishers (AEP) Distinguished Achievement Award for Educational Software in the educational science category. The program, developed by LetterPress Software, was also selected as a finalist in the most innovative software category. Winners were announced on June 8, 2005, at the AEP Annual Awards Banquet in Washington, D.C.

AEP is a national non-profit organization that supports the growth of supplemental educational publishing in all media.

In 2004, the same software received an Educational Software Review Award for health education and a Best Educational Software Award, both from the ComputED Learning Center, a San Diego-based computer education center.

The computer program was made possible through a 3-year, $384,000 grant awarded by CSREES to the Partnership for Food Safety Education (PFSE) in 2002. PFSE is a national non-profit organization dedicated to educating the public about safe food handling to help reduce foodborne illness. PFSE’s goal is to educate consumers on four simple steps (clean, cook, chill, and store) they can take to fight foodborne bacteria.

The software program is one component of the PFSE-sponsored FightBAC! food safety education campaign. CSREES has awarded approximately $700,000 in competitive grants to support PFSE efforts since 1997.

Janet Anderson, associate dietetics professor at Utah State University, worked with LetterPress Software to develop the computer program, which will be made available to both national and international audiences on the Children FightBAC Web site.

A recent study found that Children FightBAC! 2.0 is effective with young people. Utah State University’s Safe Food Institute tested 136 sixth-grade students and found an 80 percent improvement in hand washing and a 31 percent improvement in food safety knowledge after program viewing. In tests given sixth months later, the average score on the food safety post-test was 83 percent – a 24 percent increase in retained food-safety knowledge.

To learn more about the Children FightBAC food safety campaign, visit their Web site at or contact Jan Singleton, CSREES food science and food safety National Program Leader.