Carla L. Schwan

College of Family and Consumer Sciences

Extension and Outreach, Nutritional Sciences

Assistant Professor and Extension Food Safety Specialist

Dr. Schwan is a food microbiologist.


Degree Field of Study Institution Graduation
Doctor of Philosophy Food Science Kansas State University 2020
Master of Science Food Science Kansas State University 2015
Bachelor of Science Food Science and Technology Federal University of Santa Maria 2012


Research interests include consumer food safety, home food preservation, and antimicrobial resistance.


  • Invited Lecturer: "From informal markets to food deserts: using food safety and preservation to improve food security" - Fall 2022 (United States)
  • Invited Lecturer: "Characterization of Salmonella enterica from informal markets" - Spring 2022 (Bolivia)
  • Invited Lecturer: “Food Microbiology – Pathogenic E. coli” – Spring 2021 (United States)
  • Invited Lecturer: “Introduction to Food Science” – Spring and Fall 2019 (United States)
  • Co-Instructor: “Multidisciplinary, Experiential Learning: U.S. Food Safety and Regulatory Systems, for
  • Grenada, St. Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines” – Fall 2019 (United States)
  • Co-Instructor: “Train the Trainer Program – Food Safety” – Spring 2019 (Bangladesh)
  • Co-Instructor: “Introduction to Food Microbiology” – Spring 2018 (Cambodia)


Award Name Awarded By Year Awarded
Graduate Student Council Award Kansas State University 2020
Cochran Fellowship United States Department of Agriculture 2019
Extraordinary Student Award Kansas State University 2019
Student Travel Scholarship International Association of Food Protection 2018


Podcast Participation:

  1. Cultivating Curiosity. Healthy holidays: Food safety tips for gifts and gatherings. Dec 7, 2023. Listen here:
  2. FACS of Life Podcast. Food Safety and Chronic Disease. May 15, 2023. Listen here:

National Webinars:

  1. From Zero to Hero: Starting a Home Food Preservation Program & The Role of a Process Authority in Developing & Validating Preservation Processes. National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences Annual Conference.

  2. Leveraging a Food Safety Extension Network for Food Safety Resource Sharing to Support Home Food Preservation, Cottage Foods/Home-based Businesses, and Retail. National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences Annual Conference.

  3. 'Food Preservation: where to start?' Promoted by the USDA - National Agricultural Library.

  4. 'Rising prices, trending recipes, and social media: the importance of food safety in the (mis)information digital space' Promoted by Partnership for Food Safety, U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the University of Georgia.

National media interviews: 

  1. Ragusea, A., Schwan, C. L. 2022. Why certain E. coli bacteria are so bad.
  2. Ragusea, A., Schwan, C. L. 2022. What is Even Lacto-fermentation? 
  3. Buiano, M. 2022. Your Section-by-Section Guide to Storing Foods in the Fridge, From the Upper Shelves to the Crisper Drawers. Martha Stewart Magazine. Featured and provided expert review.
  4. Elkus, G. 2022. Is It Okay to Stick My Fingers in the Salt Cellar While I’m Cooking? Epicurious Magazine – Expert Advice. Featured and provided expert review.

State, Local Media or College Interviews:

  1. King, G., Schwan, C .L. 2023. How To Tell If Soda Has Gone Bad. Mashed Magazine – Expert Advice.
  2. Jackson, R., Schwan, C. L. 2023. These common recipe instructions make food safety experts cringe. The Washington Post – Expert Advice.

  3. Schwan, C. L., Singh, M., Casulli, K., Dunn, L., Diez-Gonzalez, F. 2022. Tailgating Food Safety Tips Video Social Media Kit for National Food Safety Education Month.

  4. Powell C, Schwan, C. L. 2022 UGA expert: Best to keep 41-year-old Coke in the bottle. FACS Media News, Featured and provided expert review.

  5. Powell C., Schwan, C.L. 2022. Avoid foodborne illness when preserving food at home. FACS Media News, Featured and provided expert review.

  6. Schwan, C. L. 2022. ‘Tis the season! How to safely infuse oil for homemade gifts. CAES Newswire. Provided expert review.

Carla is a food microbiologist and serves as the director of the National Center for Home Food Preservation. Her research and Extension programs address emerging topics related to home food preservation methods, including canning, freeze-drying, and fermenting. Current research projects focus on the microbial validation of recipes such as kombucha and kimchi, the survivability of pathogens during freeze-drying, subsequent shelf-life studies, and the intersection of microbial contamination and food access. Carla also provides leadership and training focusing on consumer and retail food safety. She has gained extensive experience through her work in countries such as Bangladesh, Brazil, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Paraguay, and the United States. During her trips to these countries, Carla has worked with culturally diverse individuals and audiences, helping them understand food safety, processing, preservation, and public health. Besides her passion for international research and development, Carla really enjoys offering multiple annual in-service training programs for UGA county-based faculty covering food preservation, consumer food safety, and ServSafe® Food Protection Manager Certification.

Current Research

Schwan Research and Extension Lab focus on addressing emerging topics on home food preservation and consumer food safety. Current projects include an Extension Food Safety Program to Facilitate Enhanced Food and Health Sovereignty in the State of Georgia and the development of new validated home food preservation recipes.

Job Description

Dr. Schwan is an assistant professor and food safety Extension specialist, in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Georgia. Dr. Schwan also serves as the director of the National Center for Home Food Preservation. Schwan's responsibilities include research and Extension programming in consumer food safety, foodservice, and home food preservation. Schwan's effort is divided into 75% Extension and 25% Research, under a 11-month appointment. 

Journal Articles

1. Schwan, Carla L., Leonardo M. Bastos, Shenia Young, Kelly Domesle, Beilei Ge, Chih-Hao Hsu, Cong Li, Errol Strain, Jessie Vipham, Cassandra Jones, Raghavendra Amachawadi, Tiruvoor G. Nagaraja, Valentina Trinetta. 2023. Genotypic and Phenotypic Characterization of Antimicrobial and Heavy Metal tolerance in Salmonella enterica and Escherichia coli Isolates from Swine Feed Mills. Journal of Food Protection.

2. Schwan, Carla L., Timothy J. Dallman, Peter Cook, and Jessie Vipham. 2022. A case report of Salmonella enterica serovar Corvallis from environmental isolates from Cambodia and clinical isolates in the UK. Access Microbiol. Microbiology Society. doi:10.1099/acmi.0.000315.

3. Schwan, Carla L., April Molitor, Lyda Hok, Paul Ebner, Jessie L. Vipham, Valentina Trinetta. 2022. Quantitative and Qualitative Assessments of Enterobacteriaceae, Coliforms, and Generic Escherichia coli on Fresh Vegetables Sold in Cambodian Fresh Produce Distribution Centers. Food Protection Trends, vol. 42, no. 2, pp. 107-112. doi: 10.4315/FPT-21-023.

4. Schwan, Carla L., Karina Desiree, Nora M. Bello, Leonardo Bastos, Lyda Hok, Randall K. Phebus, Sara Gragg, Justin Kastner, and Jessie Vipham. 2021. Prevalence of Salmonella enterica isolated from food contact and non-food contact surfaces in Cambodian informal markets. Journal of Food Protection 84(1):73-79. doi: 10.4315/JFP-20-112.

5. Schwan, Carla L., Sara Lomonaco, Leonardo Bastos, Joshua Maher, Peter Cook, Valentina Trinetta, Manreet Bhullar, Randall Phebus, Sara Gragg, Justin Kastner, and Jessie Vipham. 2021. Genotypic and phenotypic characterization of antimicrobial resistance profiles in non-typhoidal Salmonella strains isolated from Cambodian informal markets. Frontiers in Food Microbiology. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2021.711472

6. Zelalem, Andarge, Kebede Abegaz, Ameha Kebede, Yitagele Terefe, Carla L. Schwan, and Jessie Vipham. 2021. Food safety knowledge, attitudes, and hygienic practices of abattoir workers in Ethiopia: A cross-sectional study. Food Protection Trends 41(5):501-509.

7. Schwan, Carla L., Sara Lomonaco, Valentina Trinetta, Maria Belkey, Randall Phebus, Sara Gragg, Justin Kastner, Peter Cook, and Jessie Vipham. 2020. Draft genome sequences of 81 Salmonella enterica strains from informal markets in Cambodia. Microbiology Resource Announcements. American Society for Microbiology doi: 10.1128/ MRA.00773-20.

8. Desiree, Karina, Carla L. Schwan, Visoth Ly, Lyda Hok, Londa Nwadike, Randall K. Phebus, and Jessie L. Vipham. 2020. Defining the flow and food safety behaviors of actors in the Cambodian vegetable value chain. Food Protection Trends 40(5):349-362.

9. Desiree, Karina, Carla L. Schwan, Jessie Vipham, Randall Phebus, and Londa Nwadike. 2020. Investigating Salmonella enterica, generic Escherichia coli (E. coli) and coliforms on fresh vegetables sold in informal markets in Cambodia. J. Food Protection 84(5):843-849. doi: 10.4315/JFP-20-219.

10. Channaiah, Lakshmikantha H., Elizabeth S. Holmgren, Minto Michael, Nicholas J. Sevart, Donka Milke, Carla L. Schwan, Matthew Krug, Amanda Wilder, Randall K. Phebus, Harshavardhan Thippareddi, and George Milliken. 2016. Validation of baking to control Salmonella serovars in hamburger bun manufacturing, and evaluation of Enterococcus faecium ATCC 8459 and Saccharomyces cerevisiae as nonpathogenic surrogate indicators. J. Food Protection 79(4):544-552. doi: 10.4315/0362-028X.JFP-15- 241.

11. Silva, Pablo Teixeira da, Leadir Lucy Martins Fries, Cristiano Ragagnin de Menezes, Augusto Tasch Holkem, Carla L. Schwan, Evelin Francine Wigmann, Juliana de Oliveira Bastos, and Cristiane de Bona da Silva. 2014. Microencapsulation: concepts, mechanisms, methods and some applications in food technology. Cienc. Rural. 44(7):1304-1311. doi: 10.1590/0103-8478CR20130971.


Extension publications: 

Andress, E., Schwan C. L., (2022). Food Safety Tips for Preparing a Holiday Turkey (Circular 1226). Athens, GA: UGA Extension. Retrieved from:

Harrison, J., Woods, K., Boyer, R., Harrison, M., Wszelaki, A., Villalba A., Brown, M., I. Beltran, Schwan, C. L.,Dunn, L. L. (2022). Best Practices for Growing, Harvesting, and Handling Produce in the Field and the Packinghouse (Bulletin 1515). Athens, GA: UGA Extension. Retrieved from

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