Food technology was Dr Parpia’s forte

Mysore: Dr H A B Parpia (91), former Director of Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI), Mysore passed away in Mysore on July 9 after a brief illness.

Dr Parpia, a well-known food scientist, held numerous positions such as Senior Officer in charge of Agro-Food Industries Development, 1972 with Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, Rome. Later he was appointed Principal Adviser, UN Conference on Science and Technology, 1978 for Development, New York. He had visited over 70 countries to help them write their country papers on need of science and technology for accelerating their development and improving the quality of life, as a preparation for the Vienna Programme of Action to be prepared by the Conference. He was appointed Director of Planning and Evaluation at the UN University Headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, 1981. He has prepared total scheme for creation of Ministry of Food Processing Industry, Government of India.

Before taking on assignments with the global organisations, he was appointed as director of CFTRI in 1963 as well as Director of FAO International Food Technology Training Centre at CFTRI and also Director of International School of Milling Technology at the Institute, 1972.

Prior to becoming the director of CFTRI, Dr Parpia worked as Chief Technologist and Production Manager (1952-56) at Pure Products and Madhu Canning, Bombay, as Assistant Director in charge of Information, Statistics, Process Development and Food Plant Design in 1956 at CFTRI and as Assistant Director General, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-(CSIR), 1959 in charge of Industrial Liaison Office and Extension, Delhi and as Chief Executive at Kisan Products (an Associate Company of Cadberry – Schwepps of UK), Bangalore in 1961. Dr Parpia was requisitioned by the Government of India to work as Chief Defence Research Co-ordinator of CSIR during India’s war with China, 1962, Delhi.

Born on September 5, 1922, Dr Parpia had his early education in Burhanpur, Maharashtra and Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. He spent a year in “Sevagram” Mahatma Gandhi’s centre at Wardha as a volunteer. He completed Bachelor’s Degree in Microbiology (Industrial & Medical) and Chemistry with first class Honors in 1946. He studied Food Technology at the University of California for one Semester then moved on to Oregon State University for further advanced study and completed his PhD in 1951.
He is survived by his wife Carolyn Wilkes, two sons and two daughters.

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