RCA StudentS

The 2020 Evolution of Food Waste Manual is Live

To meet the demands of the evolving food industry, the RCA has created the Evolution of Food Waste (EFW) Product Development Student Competition in 2016. Established by the RCA Student Committee, the Evolution of Food Waste Competition challenges student teams to formulate commercialized products, increase nutritional content through value-added processing, and troubleshoot cost reduction strategies repurposing byproduct ingredients historically considered food waste.

During the annual Research Chef’s Association Convention in San Diego, CA the RCA will hold the final portion of the Evolution of Food Waste Product Development Student Competition.

Evolution of Food Waste Timeline

  • Students who wish to compete must email their letter of intent to Tori Clucas by Monday, September 30, 2019
  • EFW proposals are due to Tori Clucas by Friday, November 15, 2019
  • Students who have submitted a proposal will be informed if they have been selected to move into the finals by Friday, December 3, 2019. 

Download the 2020 EFW Manual

The Evolution of Food Waste Competition is sponsored by Griffith Foods with sponsored ingredient provided by ReGrained.


2019 RCA Student Elected Representatives 

The RCA Student Committee is comprised of four leadership positions with supporting members who are committed to driving the organizations student initiatives and setting its future direction under the advisement of the RCA Board of Directors. 

Austin Kissel
Student Committee Chair
Student at The Culinary Institute of America

Jonathan Flinn
Vice Chair/ Marketing Chair
Student at The Culinary Institute of America

Tamara Gabler
Education/Competitions Chair
Culinary Technician at Vienna Beef

Joshua Gruenberg
Regional Chair
Student at Johnson & Wales University- Providence

Jaime Mestan, CSC®   
Student Committee Board Liasion
Director of Bistro Products - Vienna Beef Ltd.

Get Involved- Join the Student Committee Today!

Join us in creating the future of food by getting involved with the RCA Student Committee. If you are a RCA student we would love to have you join the RCA Student Committee! Please contact Austin Kissel and your name will be added to the roster. Student Committee calls are held once a month. If you are interested in helping with the below initiatives please let us know.

The Student Committee is currently pursuing the following initiatives:

  • Planning student events at a regional level
  • Promoting the Evolution of Waste Competition and encouraging submissions
  • Recruiting students from every RCA recognized school to join the Student Committee
  • Publishing blog posts to The Culinologist, a place where students, professionals, and food geeks share their food interests
  • Creating and establishing a student presence on RCA social media platforms
  • And more!

Questions? Contact us at or at (312)321-6861.