March 27, 2020
Dr. Patrice Arbault

AOAC INTERNATIONAL staff and members are remembering the life of Patrice Arbault, a highly respected analytical scientist whose contribution to AOAC spanned many roles and lasted more than a decade. He passed away in mid-March.

Patrice joined AOAC in 2009 and in the following 10 years attended every Annual Meeting and Midyear Meeting, presenting posters and speaking in symposia. He chaired the Research Institute Board of Directors from 2016-2017 and was elected as a Director on the AOAC INTERNATIONAL Board in 2019.

“Patrice was a positive force of energy and a great supporter and mentor to many in the industry,” said DeAnn Benesh, a former president of AOAC INTERNATIONAL who worked extensively with Patrice.

DeAnn noted that Patrice had been a cornerstone connection between three global certification bodies: as a member of the AOAC Expert Review Panel for microbiology methods, a member of the MicroVal Technical Committee, and Chair the AFNOR microbiology Technical Committee.

“This connection between all three organizations, and his understanding of methods, was a great help in discussions to support validation harmonization efforts for which these three organizations continue to strive,” she added. “His passing is both a huge personal and professional loss to all who had the privilege to know him.”

Patrice was born and educated in France, where he earned an Engineering degree in Biotechnology from the School of Engineering of CUST in Clermont-Ferrand as well as Master of Science in Cellular and Molecular Biology from the University of Clermont-Ferrand, both in 1988. He earned a Ph.D. in Human Biology from Claude Bernard University in Lyon in 1994.

Colleagues toast Dr. Arbault at the 2020 Midyear Meeting

Patrice joined Diffchamb SA in 1994 as a Research and Development Manager and rose to Vice President Technical Affairs at Diffchamb Group in 2004. Subsequently, he founded and led BioAdvantage Consulting, a service for the food and environmental diagnostic companies, and Nexidia, a research and development laboratory.

Patrice was well known in the international food safety community as a specialist in analytical methods and for his microbiological service labs for probiotics, bacterium adaption in stress environment, and antibacterial compounds. He also served as an adjunct professor in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences at Texas Tech University.

At the 2020 AOAC INTERNATIONAL Midyear Meeting, friends and fellow Members of the Board of Directors observed a moment of remembrance for Patrice and his exemplary contribution to analytical science and AOAC.