102: Food Innovation Center

The below content replicates the content of the physical exhibit at CSU Spur. It can be used for reference, language translation, and additional accessibility.

How New Products Are Made: The Art, Science, And Business of Food 

Everything we eat and drink begins with someone having an idea for a new product. To be successful, new foods and drinks must meet a need, be possible to make, be enjoyed by people, and be able to make money. 


New food products can meet a need or solve a problem, like making foods more convenient or nutritious. Companies often try out new foods or drinks or do research to see which new products people are more likely to buy.  


Figuring out if an idea for a new food or drink is possible to create may involve trying different ingredients to find the right recipe or choosing how to package the new item.  


Samples of a new food or drink are tested in the lab to make sure it is safe and healthy. Researchers also try out the product with people (like you!) to make sure shoppers will like it.   


Turning an idea into a sustainable business takes a lot of planning – you have to make the product, tell people about it, and sell enough new products to make money. You also need to respond to suggested changes and new competition. 

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Creating a new yogurt product:  

  • Creating a new product start with an idea.  


  • Raw milk is produced and collected at the farm.  
  • Milk is delivered to the processing facility. 


  • Food experts work to develop the new yogurt.  
  • People taste the yogurt.  


  • Yogurt is transported to a store.   


  • Families buy yogurt at the store.   

It usually takes several tries to make the final product—often going back and forth between different steps in the process. 

The steps in this process are happening here in this building! Look through the glass of the food labs and the Terra Kitchen to watch. 


Associate Attorney, Navajo Tribal Utility Authority

Ms. Becker has dedicated her career to the Navajo Nation and its natural resources.  She is currently serving as an Associate Attorney for the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority.  Prior to this position, she had the honor of serving as the Director of the Navajo Nation Division of Natural Resources from May 2013 to January 2019, as an appointee of President Begaye and Vice-President Nez, after serving eleven (11) years as an attorney for the Navajo Nation focusing on water rights and natural resources issues.  Continuing her deep interest and passion for water, she serves on the Leadership Team for the Water and Tribes Initiative in the Colorado River Basin, as a Commissioner on the New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission, as an appointee of Governor Lujan Grisham, and on the Navajo Nation Water Rights Commission, as an appointee of Speaker Damon.  Ms. Becker is equally passionate about supporting artists and serves as a Trustee for the Institute of American Indian Arts and Culture (IAIA), as an appointee of President Obama.  Ms. Becker is a member of the Nation and lives on the Navajo Nation in Fort Defiance with her husband and two school age children.

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