Dubbed the father of biofood marketing in Québec, Jean-Claude Dufour has long been hailed as a visionary in many international forums. His contributions to the development of the biofood industry, along with numerous invitations to speak at conferences, are a testament to his international renown among his peers. He helped build the reputation of Université Laval and the Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences for over 42 years.
Jean-Claude Dufour holds a bachelor’s degree in agronomy, a master’s degree in rural economics, and a doctorate in administrative science.
He became a full professor in 1988, sharing his knowledge with over 10,500 students, many of whom now hold management or teaching positions around the world. Dr. Dufour was repeatedly recognized as the top instructor in the Department of Agrifood Economics and Consumer Science.
During his career, he taught large groups in various faculties. He provided a multidisciplinary learning environment brimming with thought and discussion. This diversity was a challenge for Dr. Dufour, but it enabled him to reach international audiences, sharing his knowledge in Canada, the United States, France, Belgium, Algeria, Morocco, Brazil, and Africa. Over the years, Jean-Claude Dufour was invited to deliver over 150 lectures and participated in over 100 media interviews, giving him global visibility.
He supervised over 70 graduate students. He played a key leadership role in the development of Université Laval’s continuing education and distance learning programs.
His knowledge has been the subject of 31 scientific publications, some 50 research reports and popular articles, and two volumes on services marketing. His research was recognized at several points in his career, both for its scientific value and for the changes it brought about in society.
A strong commitment to the field
Dr. Dufour held various positions during his career. For a number of years, he was heavily involved in the operations of Québec’s Order of Agronomists, whether as secretary of the Québec City chapter, as a member of the Equivalence Committee, or as a member of the Admissions Committee. He served as marketing vice president of the Québec Food Council from 1979 to 1995 and vice president of the Food Distribution Research Society, where he organized the first and only conference outside the United States in 2006. In 2005, he chaired the Ministerial Commission for the Review of Agricultural Taxation in Québec. Later, he was a founding member of the Québec Health Alliance.
As dean of the Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences from 1999 to 2003 and from 2011 to 2019, Jean-Claude Dufour accomplished a number of things. During his first term, he supported the creation of the Institute of Nutrition and Functional Foods (INAF). He later contributed to the development of the institute, working to make it a leader both in Québec and around the world. During his last term, he chaired the Deans Council of the Faculties of Agriculture, Food, and Veterinary Medicine in Canada.
Dr. Dufour also helped establish research infrastructure, including the creation of a joint research unit and LIAAN – Laboratoire international associé en bioproduction d’antimicrobiens naturels (International Associated Laboratory in Bioproduction of Natural Antimicrobials) in partnership with Université de Lille. He also founded the School of Nutrition in response to demand from the market, the profession, and the student community.
Lastly, his career was marked by a number of distinctions. In 2001, he received the Québec Interprofessional Council (CIQ) Merit Award. In 2011, he was awarded the title of Commander by Québec’s Order of Agronomists. In 2015, he received the Food Personality Award from the Québec Food Processors Council (CTAQ).
Retired since 2019, Dr. Dufour continues his career as an instructor at Université Laval’s college of corporate directors and as a corporate director.