Charles M. Rick, a researcher in tomato genetics and an emeritus professor of vegetable crops at the University of California, Davis, received the $10,000 Alexander von Humboldt Award in a ceremony on the Davis campus October 25. The award is given annually by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, which has headquarters in both Germany and the United States. The foundation presents the award to the individual it deems to have made the most significant contribution to American agriculture during the previous five years.

Rick, 78, who has won many awards, says that the von Humboldt holds special significance for him: Over the course of the 14 expeditions he's taken through South America in search of wild tomato varieties, he says, he has retraced the route taken by von Humboldt--the German naturalist and geographer after whom the award is named--and French botanist AimBonpland from 1799 to 1804. In addition, Rick notes,...

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