Email Print Site Map
Fresno County
University of California
Fresno County

Serving Fresno County

WeAreUCANR Video

Practical. Connected. Trusted. UCCE scientists are the face of UC research for many in California #WeAreUCANR

Celebrating with Farm Bureau as they begin their Centennial year by receiving a proclamation from the Fresno County Board of Supervisors.


Farm Bureau Pic


Welcome Mandeep Virk-Baker to UCCE!

Dr. Mandeep Virk Baker is the Area Nutrition, Family, and Consumer Sciences advisor for Fresno and Madera Counties. She received her Ph.D. in Nutrition Sciences from University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2012. She also received her MPH degree and a Global Health Graduate Certificate from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2013.  

She received her Registered Dietitian certification from the Commission on Dietetic Registration in 2014. Prior joining UCCE, Dr. Virk-Baker completed a post-doctoral Cancer Prevention  training at the National Cancer Institute/National Institutes of Health. At NCI, Dr. Virk-Baker’s research was focused in the areas of dietary carcinogens, tobacco, nutrition, and global health. Dr. Virk-Baker has expertise in basic lab science, epidemiology, community nutrition, public health & policy.

She is excited to join our Fresno team and is looking forward to building collaborations for extension and research in Fresno and Madera. She is passionate about utilizing her scientific skills for improving health and wellbeing of our local communities.

Our Commitment to You

Gene Flow Research Sets the Standards for Biotech Alfalfa

Gene Flow Research Sets the Standards for Biotech Alfalfa

Gene Flow Research Sets the Standards for Biotech Alfalfa

California is the largest producer of alfalfa seed in the US with production centered in Fresno, Kings, and Imperial Counties. The seed is used to plant alfalfa hay fields to support dairy, beef, horse, sheep, and goat industries worldwide. When genetically engineered alfalfa was released in 2005, concern arose over its impact on sensitive markets, specifically export and organic markets for alfalfa seed and hay. This concern resulted in a lawsuit that has restricted new plantings of biotech alfalfa.
The industry needed to find a way to produce biotech alfalfa while not interfering with the production and marketing of conventional varieties. In a collaborative study,Shannon Mueller has quantified the movement of genes from genetically engineered alfalfa to conventional fields. Results from their research were used by the National Alfalfa and Forage Association to design a stewardship program for biotech alfalfa production. This plan will allow the alfalfa seed industry to remain viable in Fresno County. All growers have a choice; they can choose to produce biotech alfalfa while neighboring growers can produce seed or hay for markets that restrict the presence of biotech genes.

Read more success stories

Make a Gift Online

We Deliver the Future!

The University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) is a statewide network of campus based Agricultural Experiment Station researchers and Cooperative Extension specialists located on the Berkeley, Davis and Riverside campuses working collaboratively with county-based Cooperative Extension advisors located in 50 county offices throughout the state.



Was this page helpful?  Yes No
Page Last Updated: June 13, 2017
Webmaster Email: