Officials from Zhuhai, China, and the university created the memorandum of understanding to establish the World Food Center (WFC)-China.
It will provide more opportunities for UC Davis and SCAU to develop coordinated programs.
The ceremony was held in Beijing, in conjunction with a separate agreement signed later with South China Agricultural University (SCAU) in Guangzhou.
Roger Beachy, executive director of the UC Davis World Food Center, said it will measure success by the reduced incidence of unsafe foods in China in coming years.
“China has placed a very high priority on improving the safety of its food and restoring confidence in consumers here and around the world,” he said.
Zhongli Pan, an adjunct professor at UC Davis, will serve as the center director. Zhuhai is contributing the first $2.5m for initial projects.
The WFC-China will be the central office for Sino-US Joint Research Centers in the country.