Otto Frederick Hunziker

Otto Frederick Hunziker
Otto Frederick Hunziker

Swiss-American Dairy Pioneer
Born 25 December 1873
Zürich, Switzerland
Died 16 November 1959
La Grange, Illinois, USA
Residence United States
Citizenship United States
Nationality Swiss
Fields Dairy, Dairy product
Institutions Purdue University
Alma mater Cornell University
Known for Work on butter processing and condensed milk

Otto Frederick Hunziker (25 December 1873 – 16 November 1959) was a pioneer in the American and international dairy industry, as both an educator and a technical innovator. Otto Hunziker was born and raised in Switzerland, emigrated to the U.S., and studied at Cornell University. He started and developed the dairy program at Purdue University when such programs were at their infancy. At this same time, Professor Hunziker was heavily involved with the development of the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) and the standardization and improvement of many dairy tests and processes. Professor Hunziker wrote several of the leading dairy processing texts, which continue to be cited. After leaving Purdue University, Otto Hunziker managed research and operations at a large, national condensary, continued to drive ADSA's standardization and publishing efforts, represented the U.S. at international dairy congresses, and facilitated dairy industry improvements across the globe.


Early years

Otto Frederick Hunziker was born in Zürich, Switzerland, on 25 December 1873 to Karl Otto and Luise (Pupikofer) Hunziker.[1][2][3] Otto's siblings were Karl Rudolf (born 5 February 1870, Zürich), Barbara Luise (17 June 1871 – 16 October 1871), and Marie Julie (23 July 1872 – 30 June 1938). Otto Hunziker spent many early years in Goldbach, Switzerland, where his father was a pastor, professor, and member of the canton parliament.[4] Otto graduated from a Swiss agricultural college at age 19. In 1893, Otto Frederick Hunziker emigrated to the United States.

During this time period, significant new development in dairy processing technology was occurring on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean. In 1890, Stephen Babcock published specifications for the Babcock test for milk fat content. In 1892, Dr. Niklaus Gerber acquired a Swiss patent on the Gerber method for analyzing fat content in milk.[5] Dr. Gerber was based in Zürich, had studied at the University of Zürich, and worked for two years at the Swiss-American Milk Company in Little Falls, New York. Otto Hunziker would spend a substantial amount of time studying and improving these analytic methods.

In the United States, O. F. Hunziker initially worked on a dairy farm near Attleboro, Massachusetts. To improve his English and commercial skills, he studied at Bryant and Stratton Business College (now Bryant University), Providence, Rhode Island in 1896. He returned to Switzerland briefly in 1898 before returning to receive a B.S. Agriculture in 1900[6] and M.S.A. in 1901 from Cornell University.[3][7] He served as an assistant in charge of dairy bacteriology at Cornell University until 1902,[8][9] when he equipped and operated a dairy manufacturing research laboratory for the Scranton Condensed Milk Company in Ellicottville, New York.[3] Otto Frederick married Florence Belle Burne on 10 April 1905 in Portville, Cattaraugus County, New York.[10]

Professorship at Purdue

In 1905 Hunziker accepted a position at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana as head of Purdue's Dairy Department.[11][12] Dairy departments were relatively new at American colleges. (The first dairy school in the U.S. was created at the University of Wisconsin in 1890.[13]) Professor Hunziker led Purdue's dairy department through significant growth.[14][15]

In the summer of 1906, O. F. Hunziker was among 18 teachers and investigators meeting at the University of Illinois, Urbana, to found what was then known as National Association of Dairy Instructors and Investigators. (The following year, this association changed its name to "Official Dairy Instructors' Association" and, in 1916, changed its name to "American Dairy Science Association" (ADSA).[16]) From 1910 to 1926, Otto Hunziker chaired ADSA's Committee on Official Methods of Testing Milk and Cream for Butterfat. In 1911, this committee met in Washington DC with the U.S. Bureau of Dairying, the U.S. Bureau of Standards and manufacturers of glassware.[17] Standard specifications for Babcock glassware were published as a result of this meeting. Professor Hunziker actively pursued numerous improvements to the testing methodology, which improved the quality and safety of dairy products. Otto Hunziker was the third president of ADSA from 1910 through 1911. During Professor Hunziker's presidency, ADSA also: created a national score card for scoring dairies; standardized dairy judging contests; secured scholarships for student contests; improved national milk standards; developed ties with breed associations; and, provided fora for industry discussions on dairy instruction and extension services.[18]

Smith Hall, Purdue University, 1913

Apart from application of improved pedagogy and scientific methodology, Professor O. F. Hunziker oversaw planning and construction of Smith Hall, the building which thereafter housed Purdue's dairy manufacturing group, extension service, and creamery. While at Purdue, he published over 50 bulletins, leaflets, and scientific treatises addressing dairy farm and plant problems.[3] In 1917, O. F. Hunziker left Purdue to manage manufacturing and research at the Blue Valley Creamery Company in Chicago, Illinois.

Professional life

O. F. Hunziker

Professor Hunziker wrote dairy articles and textbooks used throughout the world, developed dairy curricula, advocated for dairy laws, and developed standard testing methodology. In particular, Dr. Hunziker authored The Butter Industry, Prepared for Factory, School and Laboratory, a well-known text in the industry that enjoyed at least three editions (1920, 1927, 1940).[19] A book that Dr. Hunziker originally self-published in 1914, Condensed milk and milk powder: prepared for the use of milk condenseries, dairy students and pure food departments, was republished in a seventh edition in October 2007 by Cartwright Press. According to one book review: "The popularity of this book may be judged by the fact that this is the fourth edition, the three previous editions having long since been exhausted. The book is the most important contribution on the condensed milk and milk powder industry. It should be in the library of the teacher, the student or factory man interested in any phase of the condensed milk and milk powder industry."[20] Both books are listed by Cornell University as "Core Historical Literature of Agriculture". In the 1920s, O.F. Hunziker initiated a "dairy school over the air"—a radio program on WGN for which dairy experts were invited to discuss various issues. Otto Hunziker was a director of the National Dairy Council and is listed in The Ten Master Minds of Dairying.[18][21][22][23] When the World's Dairy Congress was held in the U.S. in 1923, the U.S. Department of Agriculture selected O. F. Hunziker to head the industry and economics program.[24] He later represented the United States at World Dairy Congresses in London, 1928; Copenhagen, 1931; Berlin, 1937; Stockholm, 1949; and The Hague, 1953. He obtained several United States patents, including: "Apparatus for deodorizing cream". 1925-06-30.  and Process for treating milk and its products. 1929-08-06. . At Blue Valley, O. F. Hunziker established a research program for 22 creameries and two milk plants. In 1932, Purdue University bestowed an honorary doctoral degree in science.[3][25] He retired from Blue Valley Creamery in 1939 to work as a consultant. In 1942, O F Hunziker was honored with the first ADSA honorary life membership.[26] Otto Hunziker was awarded numerous international honors[1] for his work, including:

  • Diploma from Italian government for scientific papers at Milan International Exposition
  • 1927: Australian Dairy Council
  • 1928: Swiss gold medal
  • 1934: A.D.S.A. Distinguished Service Scroll[27]
  • 1942: "Grande Diploma de Honra," Brazilian Instituto―Tecnico Industrial
  • 1950: Honorary membership in "Tu Sociedad Espanola de Bromatologia" (Spain)

Family life

All three sons of Professor Hunziker attended Purdue University. Children of Otto and Florence were:

  • Florence Louise (Carroll Dunham Galvin), born 15 December 1906 in Indiana, died 27 January 1980, Concord, California.[29]
  • Otto Frederick, Jr., born 5 September 1915, Lafayette, Indiana, died 19 August 1993, Osprey, Florida,[33] graduated from Purdue in 1937 with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering and as a member of the Cary Club and Kappa Delta Rho.[34]

Otto (Sr.) was on the board of the La Grange First Methodist Church and the La Grange Federal Savings and Loan Association as well as active in the Civic Club, Kiwanis Club, and American-Swiss Chamber of Commerce. Hobbies included water sports, mountain climbing, ice skating and gardening.[1]

Death and posthumous honors

Otto Frederick Hunziker died on 16 November 1959 in La Grange, Illinois.[3] A portrait of Dr. Hunziker and plaque hang in Purdue's Smith Hall.[35] In 1964, 283 leaders in the dairy industry were asked to name contributors most significantly shaping the dairy industry. O. F. Hunziker was listed third, ahead of such well-known industry luminaries as Gail Borden.[36] He was also inducted into the National Dairy Shrine as a "pioneer".[37]


  1. ^ a b c "People and Events in the Dairy Science World" (PDF). Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 37 (1): 107–108. 1954. doi:10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(54)91238-2. Retrieved 2008-05-23. 
  2. ^ "The Remaining Charter Members of A.D.S.A." (PDF). Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 39 (6): 621. 1956. doi:10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(56)91183-3. Retrieved 2008-05-23. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Otto Frederick Hunziker Memorial" (PDF). Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 43 (4): 3–4. Retrieved 2008-05-23. 
  4. ^ "Matrikeledition der Universität Zürich" (in "German"). Universität Zürich. 2007-11-07. Retrieved 2008-05-28. 
  5. ^ "Gerber Instruments History". Gerber Instruments AG. Archived from the original on 2008-03-14. Retrieved 2008-08-28. 
  6. ^ "Bachelors of the Science of Agriculture" (PDF). Cornell Alumni News Vol. 02, No. 36: pp. 248. 1900-06-23. 
  7. ^ Bailey, Liberty Hyde (September 1920) (PDF). A Register of the Rural Leadership in the United States and Canada. Ithaca, NY. pp. 234–235. OCLC 7696533. Retrieved 2008-05-29. "Hunziker, Otto Frederick, manag. manufacturing dept. and dir. research lab., Blue Valley Creamery Co., Chicago, Ill. Asst. path. bact. and chg. dairy bact., Cornell Univ., 1901–1902; milk expert, Scranton Condensed Milk Co., Ellicottville and Springville, N. Y., 1902–1905; instr. dairying, Purdue Univ., 1905–1906; assoc. prof., 1906–1907; prof. and chief dairy dept., 1907–1917; present position, 1917–. Pres. Amer. Assoc. Dairy Sci., 1910–1912; mem. exec. com., Ind. State Dairy Assoc., Ind Manufacturers of Dairy Products; dir. Nat. Dairy Council. Adv. to condensed milk factories in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Japan, 1909–1917. Del. from Amer. Assoc. Dairy Sci. and U. S. Dept. Agr. to Intern. Dairy Congress, Stockholm, Sweden, 1911. Auth.: Manufacture of Condensed Milk and Milk Powder, 1914, rev. ed., 1918 and 1920; The Butter Industry, 1920. Assoc. ed., Dairy License [sic] Journal.--b. Zurich, Switzerland, Dec. 25, 1873 (naturalized 1904); s. Otto Carl [sic] and Louise (Pupikofer) H.; reared in country; m. Florence Belle Burne, 1905; c. Thelma Belle, [*235] Florence Louise, Karl Otto, Walter Burne, Isabelle Mary, Otto F. Jr. Grad. Agr. Coll., Zurich, 1892; Bryant and Stratton Business Coll., Providence, R. I. 1896; B.S., Cornell Univ., 1900; M.S., 1901. Sigma Xi; Alpha Zeta; Gamma Alpha." 
  8. ^ Bandler, David K; Robert F Holland (2002) (PDF). Food Science at Cornell University: A Century of Excellence, 1902–2002. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University. pp. 10. Retrieved 2008-05-30. "A number of other individuals, some of who became well known in the dairy industry in subsequent years were associated with the department in teaching, research or extension during this period. * * * Otto F. Hunziker, (Cornell 1900) was Experiment Station Bacteriologist for about two years after his graduation. During that time he assisted in the teaching of dairy bacteriology and published Bulletin 203, The Care and Handling of Milk. Hunziker later joined the staff of Purdue University and became well known through his books on the manufacture of dairy products." 
  9. ^ Turk, Kenneth (1987) (PDF). Animal Husbandry at Cornell: A History and Record of Development from 1868 to 1963. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University. pp. 18–19. Retrieved 2008-05-30. "Otto F. Hunziker graduated from Cornell in 1900 and joined the staff as a dairy bacteriologist for a period of about 2 years. He wrote Bulletin 197, "Investigations Concerning the Germicidal Action in Cow's Milk," and Bulletin 203, "The Care and Handling of Milk." Hunziker then joined the faculty of Purdue University and became widely known as a teacher and an author of two textbooks, The Butter Industry, and Condensed Milk and Milk Powder. Later, the major part of his career was in private industry." 
  10. ^ Cornell Alumni News, Vol VII, No. 20, (21 Feb 1906), p. 237
  11. ^ Cornell Alumni News, Vol XII, No. 7, (10 Nov 1909), p. 82
  12. ^ M. M. Schutz. "Highlights of Dairy Production at Purdue University" (PDF). ADSA Centennial Posters. ADSA. Retrieved 2010-04-29. "The first Head of the Dairy Husbandry Department and a charter member of ADSA was O.F. Hunziker (1905-1917)." 
  13. ^ L.H. Schultz; D.A. Wieckert; C.C. Olson; W.T. Howard; D.P. Dickson. "A Century of Excellence in Education and Discovery" (PDF). UW–Wisconsin. Archived from the original on 2008-06-29. Retrieved 2008-08-27. "Stephen Babcock established the first 'Dairy School' in the nation in 1890." 
  14. ^ Chambers, James V. "A Century of Dairy Science at Purdue University" (PDF). American Dairy Science Association. Retrieved 2008-05-29. "With the vision and leadership of Otto F. Hunziker, dairy science and technology evolved at Purdue University. In 1905 Purdue experienced a sharp growth in its agricultural programs. Professor Hunziker seized upon the opportunities to serve this growing agricultural sector. He identified needs for developing educational programs to better educate dairymen and needs for instituting adequate dairy laws for the protection of the dairy industry. His scientific treatises dealt with the solution of problems on dairy farms and in dairy plants. His research established accuracy of glassware and provided standard methods for the Babcock fat test of milk and cream. He planned Smith Hall and adjacent creamery which was built in 1913. A champion for the dairy industry, he won recognition in the fields of butter making, condensed milk and dried milk. He incorporated scientific principles into every step of the butter-making process. His textbooks were used by agricultural universities in dairy courses throughout the United States and in other dairy countries."  From the abstract: "During the organizational year of the American Dairy Science Association, Otto F. Hunziker led the dairy program at Purdue University. A charter member of ADSA and its third president, Dr. Hunziker's brilliant career as a scientist, teacher and author is recognized throughout the world. At Purdue he provided leadership in developing educational programs to better educate dairymen. His research programs established the accuracy of glassware and provided standard methods for the Babcock fat test of milk and cream. He planned Smith Hall, which was built in 1913 to provide facilities for teaching, research and extension work."
  15. ^ The 1906 Purdue yearbook (the Debris Vol 18) lists: "Otto Fred Hunziker, Instructor in Dairying; B.S.A., Cornell University, 1900; M.S.A., 1901; Sigma Xi". (JP2) Debris. 18. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University. 1906. pp. 54.,9107. Retrieved 2008-06-20.  The only other "dairying" faculty listed is one Hubert Everett Van Norman who is listed as "Resigned". The 1907 Debris indicates Otto Fred Hunziker was promoted to Associate Professor; the only other "dairying" faculty is one John deMoss Jarvis, Assistant in Dairying. The following year, Otto Fred Hunziker is listed as a full professor. In 1910, Otto's position is listed as Professor of Dairy Husbandry and as a member of the Official Dairy Instructors' Association (ODIA). John deMoss Jarvis remains the only other dairy faculty, but became an instructor in 1909. In the 1911–1914 yearbooks, Otto Fred Hunziker is listed as president of ODIA as well as a member of the Indiana Academy of Science, Indiana State Dairy Association, and Indiana Jersey Cattle Club. The 1911 Debris also lists two dairy instructors and one assistant. In the new "Experiment Station" section, O. F. Hunziker is listed "Chief of Dairy Husbandry". The 1914 Debris lists Alpha Zeta and the Purdue Dairy Club for the first time; apart from Professor Hunziker, two associates and an assistant are listed as faculty members of the dairy club.
  16. ^ Harding, H.A. (1917). "Report of Committee on Change of Name" (PDF). Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 1 (2): 148–149. doi:10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(17)94367-X. Retrieved 2008-06-19. 
  17. ^ Herreid, Ernest O. "The Babcock Test; A Review of the Literature" (PDF). Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 25 (4): 342–343. Retrieved 2008-06-19. 
  18. ^ a b Trout, G. Malcolm (1981). "Four Outstanding Early Presidents". Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 64 (6): 880. : "The contributions of Otto F. Hunziker, Purdue University, to the Association extended far beyond his early 2-year presidency, 1910 and 1911. For many years he was the dedicated member of the Journal Management Committee, nurturing the newly founded journal as if it were his very own. As an administrator, author, and researcher, his presence at a meeting assured its success. There was authority in his deliberate, well-chosen words. He represented the dairy manufacturers of America five times at the world's dairy congresses—London, 1928; Copenhagen, 1931; Berlin, 1937; Stockholm, 1949; den Hague, 1953—a record that stood for many years. For his sustained enthusiasm for the American Dairy Science Association at home or abroad, he might well have been named 'Mr. ADSA'. He too, was listed among the 'Ten Master Minds of Dairying'."
  19. ^ Toronto Food Policy Council (September 2000). "The Canadian Regulatory Process for Evaluating Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone in the Dairy Industry: A Critical Review" (PDF). The City of Toronto. Retrieved 2008-05-23.  The Butter Industry (or its author) was "recognized by the Ontario Department of Agriculture as an expert on butter quality".
  20. ^ "Book Review". Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 9 (5): 505. September 1, 1926. doi:10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(26)93920-9. Retrieved 2008-06-25. 
  21. ^ Harmon, E. M. (1930). The Ten Master Minds of Dairying. Successful Farming. Des Moines, IA: Meredith Publishing Co. 
  22. ^ Fitch, J. B. (November 1929). "The Ten Master Minds of Dairying". Successful Farming (Des Moines, IA: Meredith Publishing Co) 28 (11): 67–69. 
  23. ^ Edwards, Everett Eugene (1930) (PDF) A Bibliography of the History of Agriculture in the United States Misc. Publication 84, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture Washington, DC: Government Printing Office p. 222 ISBN 0833710028 LCCN 30-270 Retrieved 2008-12-04 Republished Detroit, MI: Gale Research Company, 1967, LCCN 66-834; New York, Burt Franklin, 1970, LCCN 76-222
  24. ^ "World Dairy Congress, Government Sends Invitations to Fifty Nations" (PDF). The New York Times. 1922-06-25. Retrieved 2008-05-31. 
  25. ^ (JP2) Annual Meeting of the Board of Trustees of Purdue University. 8. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University. 13 June 1932. pp. 10.,28676. Retrieved 2010-04-29. "President Elliott presented for the approval of the Board of Trustees the recommendation of a special committee of the Faculty that honorary degrees be conferred as follows: The degree of Doctor of Science upon Otto Frederick Hunziker" 
  26. ^ Trout, G. Malcolm (May 1, 1961). "The Awards of the American Dairy Science Association: A Review" (PDF). Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 44 (5): 955–964. doi:10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(61)89841-X. Retrieved 2008-06-29. 
  27. ^ Graves, R R. "Proceedings of the 29th Annual Meeting of the A.D.S.A.". Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 17 (8): 578–579. 
  28. ^ Rootsweb Social Security Death Index search for Florence Galvin. Retrieved on 27 Apr 2010.
  29. ^ Rootsweb Social Security Death Index search for Thelma Tipple. Retrieved on 27 Apr 2010.
  30. ^ Rootsweb Social Security Death Index search for Walter Hunziker. Retrieved on 27 Apr 2010.
  31. ^ (JP2) Debris. 43. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University. 1931. pp. 70.,17912. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  32. ^ Rootsweb Social Security Death Index search for Isabelle Kerr. Retrieved on 27 Apr 2010.
  33. ^ Rootsweb Social Security Death Index search for Otto Hunziker. Retrieved on 27 Apr 2010.
  34. ^ (JP2) Debris. 43. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University. 1937. pp. 49.,17194. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  35. ^ "Portrait of Dr. Otto Frederick Hunziker Presented to Purdue University". Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 45 (6): 6. June 1, 1962. Retrieved 2008-05-23. 
  36. ^ Trout, G. Malcolm (1964). "Some Foundations of the Dairy Industry". Journal of Dairy Science (American Dairy Science Association) 47 (6): 660. 
  37. ^ National Dairy Shrine


  • Bishop, Glen A.; Gilbert, Paul Thomas (1932). Chicago's Accomplishments and Leaders. Chicago: Bishop Pub. Co.. pp. 265. 
  • Cattell, J. McKeen; Cattell, J. (1968) [1933]. American Men of Science: A Biographical Directory (5th ed.). Jaques Cattell Press. pp. 658. 
  • Hunziker, O. F. (1914) [1914]. Condensed milk and milk powder: prepared for the use of milk condenseries, dairy students and pure food departments. LaGrange, IL: author. ISBN 1406782661. OCLC 3299602. LCC SF259.H8. 2nd Ed. (LaGrange, IL: author, 1918), 3rd Ed. (LaGrange, IL: author, 1920), alternative 3rd Ed
  • Hunziker, O. F. (1920) [1920]. The Butter Industry, Prepared for Factory, School and Laboratory. LaGrange, IL: author. OCLC 153586944. LCC SF263.H8. 
  • Who's who in the Central States: A Biographical Dictionary of Leading Men. Chicago: Larkin, Roosevelt & Larkin. 1947. pp. 107. 
  • Who's who in Switzerland Including the Principality of Liechtenstein. Central European Times Pub. Co. Ltd.. 1950. pp. 245. 

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