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Horticultural Sciences

Horticultural Sciences

Dr. Steven A. Sargent

Professor and Assistant Chair

Mailing Address:
Fifield Hall
2550 Hull Road
PO Box 110690
Gainesville, Florida 32611

Office: 1211 Fifield Hall
Phone: (352) 273-4780

  • Areas of Research
    • Current projects include: mechanical harvest, cooling, modified/controlled atmospheres, ethylene antagonists, such as 1-methylcyclopropene.
    • Determine the impact of current and novel techniques and technologies on quality of fresh fruits and vegetables during harvest, handling and storage operations.
  • Teaching Responsibilities
    • HOS 5330 – Postharvest Technologies for Horticultural Crops
  • Educational Background
    • Ph.D., Agricultural Engineering, Michigan State University (1984)
    • M.S., Horticulture, Michigan State University (1979)
    • B.S., Horticulture, Michigan State University (1976)
  • Extension Program
    • Develop relevant extension materials based on results of my research program and new developments in the scientific literature and present to pertinent clientele groups.
    • Provide statewide leadership in the Plant Sciences Working Group of UF/IFAS Extension Initiative 1.
  • Work Experience
    • Language Proficiency
      • Fluent in Portuguese and intermediate fluency in Spanish.
    • Extension Collaborations
      • Emater-Federal District of Brasilia and Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.
    • Research Collaborations
      • Embrapa (Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation): Embrapa Vegetables, Brasilia; Embrapa Instrumentation, São Carlos, Brazil
      • University of São Paulo, ESALQ campus, Piracicaba, Brazil
      • Federal University of Sergipe, Aracaju, Brazil
  • Honors and Awards
    • Researcher of the Year, 2010, Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association
    • Honorary Professor, 2010, Universidad del Santa, Food Technology Department, Chimbote, Peru
    • Extension Publication Award, Southern Region, American Society for Horticultural Science, 19992003, and 2004
    • ESCOP/ACOP Leadership ProgramParticipant, Experiment Station Committee on Organization & Policy
    • National Organization of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges, 2001-2002 cohort
    • Educational Materials Award, Extension Division, American Society for Horticultural Science, 1999 and 2000
    • Most Outstanding Research Paper in Vegetable Crops, 1999, American Society for Horticultural Science
    • Ulysses P. Hedrick Award, 1999, American Pomological Society, 1st Place Paper, Montealegre, JC, Childers, NC, Sargent, SA, Barros, LM, Alves, RE, 1999, Cashew (Anarcardium occidentale, L.) nut and apple: a review of current production and handling recommendations, Fruit Varieties Journal 53(1):2-9
    • Researcher of the Year, 2010, Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association
    • International Educator of the Year, IFAS, Sr. Faculty Category, 2010, University of Florida International Center
    • The Presidential Gold Medal, 2002 and 2009, Florida State Horticulture Society
    • Jim App Award for Outstanding Design Team, 2002, University of Florida Cooperative Extension Service
    • Best Paper Award, Florida State Horticultural Society, 2000, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2008 Meetings)
    • Faculty Development Leave, 1993 to1994, University of Florida, Sabbatical year in Guaratiba, Brazil
  • Program Personnel
    • Adrian Berry, M.S., Biological Scientist iV
    • Catherine Belisle, PhD student (USA)
    • Carina Theodore, MS student (Haiti)

Selected Publications

AuthorsYearTitle / DescriptionPublication
Ferreira, M.D., P. C. Spricigo and S.A. Sargent.  2017 Ch. 3. (Harvest and Packing). Pp. 67-85.  In, Ferreira, M.D. (ed.), (Postharvest Instrumentation for Fruits and Vegetables). Original title: Instrumentação Pós-Colheita em Frutas e Hortaliças. Embrapa, Brasilia DF, Brazil. 284 pp.
Makani, M.N., S.A. Sargent, L. Zotarelli, D.J. Huber and C.A. Sims.  2017 Harvest Interval Has Greater Effect on Periderm Maturity and Storage Quality of Early-maturing, Tablestock Potato than Nitrogen Rate. HortScience 52:1390-1395.
Hagan, L.L., Johnson, P. N. T., Sargent, S.A., Huber, D.J. and A. Berry A.  2017 1-methylcyclopropene treatment and storage conditions delay the ripening of plantain fruit while maintaining sensory characteristics of ampesi, the boiled food product. International Food Research Journal 24(2):630-636.
Takeda, F., W.Q. Yang, C. Li, A. Freivalds, K. Sung, R. Xu, B. Hu, J. Williamson and S. Sargent.  2017 Applying New Technologies to Transform Blueberry Harvesting. Agronomy 7(2):33; doi:10.3390/agronomy7020033.
Sargent, S.A. and Moretti, C.L. 2016  Tomato. In, Gross, K., C.Y. Wang and M. Saltveit (Eds.). The Commercial Storage of Fruits, Vegetables, and Florist & Nursery Stocks. Agriculture Handbook 66. U.S. Dept. Agric. Agr. Res. Serv. Washington, DC. pp. 581-587.
Sargent, S.A. 2016 Cassava. In, Gross, K., C.Y. Wang and M. Saltveit (Eds.). The Commercial Storage of Fruits, Vegetables, and Florist & Nursery Stocks. Agriculture Handbook 66. U.S. Dept. Agric. Agr. Res. Serv. Washington, DC.  pp. 260-270.
Casamali, B., J.G. Williamson, A.P. Kovaleski, S.A. Sargent and R.L. Darnell. 2016 Mechanical Harvesting and Postharvest Storage of Two Southern Highbush Blueberry Cultivars Grafted onto Vaccinium arboreum Rootstocks. HortScience 51:1503-1510. DOI:  10.21273/HORTSCI11323-16.
Perez Cayo, Y., S.A. Sargent, C. do Nascimento Nunes and V. Whitaker. 2016 Composition of commercial strawberry cultivars and advanced selections as affected by season, harvest and postharvest storage. HortScience 51(9):1134-1143. DOI:10.21273/HORTSCI10996-16.
Reyes-Cabrera, J., L. Zotarelli, M.D. Dukes, D.L. Rowland, S.A. Sargent. 2016 Soil moisture distribution under drip irrigation and seepage for potato production. Agricultural Water Management 169:183-192. DOI: 10.1016/j.agwat.2016.03.001