Pizza trade magazine PMQ and Christopher Muller, a Florida professor, hope to create the country's first university-based pizza research program at the University of Central Florida's Rosen School of Hospitality Management in Orlando.
Muller is proposing a national center to be part of the Rosen college, where five full- and part-time staffers would research trends, collect data and train restaurant owners and managers.
Now, you may be thinking just as I was: Professor, we've gone our entire lives without a pizza institute in O-town. Do we really need one now?
Muller answers with an enthusiastic, "yes," reminding those who think his idea is half-baked that there are 69,000 pizza joints nationally. Each and every American consumes 46 pieces, or 23 pounds of the stuff, each year.
Perhaps this is the advanced degree I've been waiting for?
You can read briefly about the institute in the Orlando Sentinel [Pizza institute idea seems fresh, first item] or listen to Dr. Muller discuss the idea on PMQ's Pizza Radio site [Dr. Christopher Muller : Dir. of the National Pizza Institute].