FHIN Summit 2019


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Our Speakers

Vice-Director of GreenUPorto - Research Centre for Sustainable AgriFood Production, Faculty of Sciences of University of Porto

Susana Carvalho has PhD in the field of Agronomical Sciences from Wageningen University (NL) and She is Assistant Professor at FCUP and Director of MSc program in ‘Agronomical Engineering’. Main research interests of Susana Carvalho: horticulture, plant physiology, plant nutrition and postharvest technology. 75 publications and more than 50 communications in international congresses. Supervised/co-supervised 8 PhD students and 31 MSc students. Coordination of six R&D projects and participation in 8 other projects, including 3 EC-funded projects.

Associated Professor and Leader, Biomedical Polymer Nanocomposites, Hydrogels, and Tissue Engineering Group of Department of Chemistry

Wael Mamdouh is “Associate Professor” of Nanotechnology, and leader of the largest dynamic research groups at AUC; “Biomedical Polymer Nanocomposites, Hydrogels and Tissue Engineering”. He is also the founder of a recent Spinoff startup Company (NANO-Fib-TECH) for producing nanotechnology-based disinfectant solutions and Nanocosmetics for healthcare sector. Mamdouh received his M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium in 2002 and 2005, and B.Sc. in Science: Chemistry from Ain Shams University, Egypt in 1997. His h-index is 20, his publications and U.S. patents received more than 3300 citations worldwide. His research is focused on designing novel polymer nanocomposites, electrospun nanofibers, nanoparticles, Drug delivery nanocarriers, antibacterial nanocoatings and nanoscaffolds for wound dressings and tissue/bone/cartilage regeneration, Nanocosmetics, Nanoporous membranes for biomedical and packaging applications

Institute of Polymers, Composites and Biomaterials (IPCB) – National Research Council, Naples, Italy

Dr. Giovanna G. Buonocore is researcher at Institute of Polymers, Composites and Biomaterials (IPCB) – National Research Council, Naples (Italy). She graduated in Chemical Engineering and received the Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Naples Federico II (Italy). Dr. Buonocore has been visiting researcher at the University of Santiago de Compostela (Spain) and at the Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering of the University of Texas, Austin (USA). Her current research activity is focused on the development, characterization and modelling of multifunctional nanostructured polymeric materials used in various application fields such as packaging, transport, cultural heritage and energy. Research activities are aimed to produce and study nanostructured coating/polymeric films filled with engineered nanoparticles able to release active compounds such as anticorrosive compounds in the case of protective coating for Cultural Heritage applications and antimicrobial or antioxidant compounds in the case of active coating for packaging application. The main aim of the research is to functionalize the inorganic porous nanoparticles in order to control the compound release and in specific conditions to trigger the release by external stimuli. She is authors and co-authors of 80 scientific contributions (full papers, communication, review) in international peer-reviewed journals, 1 book chapter and 3 patents. Her works received more than 1600 citations and her activity is ranked with an H index of 26 (Scopus Database source). She has been the Principal Investigator of several national and international projects on the development of advanced multifunctional polymeric materials. Since 2008 she is member of the directive board of the Italian Scientific Group on Food packaging and from 2012 to 2015 she has been the vice-president of the Scientific Group.

International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory, Braga

Prof. Lorenzo Pastrana has a PhD in Pharmacy (1991) by the University of Santiago (Spain). He was postdoctoral fellow (1992-1993) in the Centre de Transfert en Microbiologie et Biotechnologie–INSA at Toulouse (France). In 1991 he joint the University of Vigo (UVIGO) in Spain as Assistant Lecturer in Biochemistry. Since 2010 is Professor of Food Science at UVIGO, where he was the founder and the first Director of the Centre of Research Transference and Innovation (CITI) at Tecnopole (Galicia Technological Park), and the Head of the Knowledge Transfer Office of the University of Vigo (2009-2010). In 2006 founded the first Regional Food Innovation Cluster (Galician Agri-Food Technology Platform). Since 2016 is member of the scientific board of the Cluster Portugal Foods. In September 2015 he joins the International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory at Braga (Portugal) INL, as Head of the Department of Life Sciences. His research is marked oriented with a multidisciplinary approach integrating methods and concepts of the biotechnology, nanotechnology and mathematical modelling. Currently he is working in three main areas, namely: micro and nanoencapsulation of bioactives for improving functional foods; edible, active and smart food packaging; and creation of new gastronomic sensations/emotions by using nanotechnology. He is author of more than one hundred fifty scientific papers and 4 licenced patents relating the development of new food products and process. He has a broad experience leading as PI National and European research projects as well industrial R&D contracts with food companies.

Researcher of National Institute of Research and Physicochemical Analysis (INRAP), Tunisia

Khaoula Khwaldia received her Ph.D. in Biotechnology and Food Science from the University of Lorraine (INPL, France) after graduating as a Food Science engineer from the National Agronomic Institute of Tunisia. She is currently researcher at the National Institute of Research and Physicochemical Analysis (INRAP, Tunisia). Her research work is related to the enhancement of food quality and safety, the valorization of agro-food wastes/byproducts as well as the new generation of “green” packaging materials. She is the author or co-author of 80 scientific contributions (full papers, communications, reviews) in international peer-reviewed journals, 3 book chapters and 1 patent. Her works received more than 687 citations. She has been the Principal Investigator of several national and international projects on food packaging.

Professor FCT NOVA

PhD in Organic Chemistry from FCT NOVA in 1994 and researcher at LAQV-REQUIMTE, Associate Laboratory for Green Chemistry - Chemistry and Technology Network. Has developed her scientific activity in projects that highlight the multidisciplinary aspects of organic chemistry with a focus on developing new synthesis methodologies in problems ranging from food science to conservation, including the challenges of toxicology. Currently is coordinating the Portuguese participation on the MEDCLIV project team that aims to apply participatory approaches to developing climate change adaptation and mitigation solutions for the vine and wine value chain in the Mediterranean area.

Coordinates the area of European projects of Clusaga

Ana Felgueiras coordinates the area of European projects of Clusaga since March 2017. She graduated in International Relations and she is a University Expert in Social Responsibility and Innovation and holds a master’s in Management and Public Policies. She has large experience in European and international affairs and projects, acquired during her academic studies and her work in non-profit organisations, the private firm, international institutions and the university, in three different countries. She has also worked as external expert for the EACEA. During her time in the University of A Coruña-UDC (2010-2017) she researched and published on corporate and network governance and social innovation and responsibility.

Principal Researcher at National Institute of Health Doutor Ricardo Jorge

Isabel Castanheira is the Principal Researcher at National Institute of Health Doutor Ricardo Jorge. Head of Food and Nutrition Department. Member of Portuguese WHO collaborative centre for nutrition and childhood obesity with responsibility in Iodine determination in foods and biological fluids. Chairperson of IMEKO Technical Committee for Metrology in Food and Nutrition). Co-supervisor of PhD thesis and master thesis focus on food characterization. Research member of several European research projects. Reviewer of scientific articles in indexed journals mainly first quartile (Scimago rank). Associated Editor of Food chemistry, Member of editorial board of Journal of Food Composition and Analysis and Measurement. Author of more than 100 scientific publications in various areas, from metrology to food toxicology with a high share of publications in journals of the first quartile of importance (SciMAGO Rank). Participating in international collaborative studies focusing on certification campaign of values assigned to certified reference materials. She has interests in analysing and studying the content of classical nutrients and contaminants of emerging concerned in food products in terms of the comparability and reliability of the measurement values. Her activities in these research projects consider aspects of the traceability routes to SI units involving intermediate reference points which are identified and developed through state-of-the-art analytical methods such as HPLC-ICP-MS, LC-MS or GC-MS.

Innovation project manager at Valorial

Blandine Fortin has a Master degree in Commercial trade (Tours University, France) and during 12 years experience in Yves Rocher Group (Rennes, France) worked on sales forecasts and direct marketing & international development. She has a Master degree level in Agrofood Marketing, continuous training (Agrocampus university, Rennes, France) and she is the Innovation project manager at Valorial working on realization of a study about innovation management (Barometer of innovation), development of the consultancy activity in innovation management, implementation of AHFES project and organization of events dedicated to their members.

Fellow of the Institute of Food Science and Technology

Alison Haselgrove has spent 35 years working in the food industry, firstly as a Buying Controller for a major UK supermarket chain and latterly as the New Product Development Director for a large red meat processer in the UK and Ireland. She strongly believes in a consumer led approach to innovation, basing inspiration on delighting customers with new products that deliver inspiring and nutritious food choices - but always against a robust backdrop of commercial viability and food safety considerations. She is an elected Fellow of the Institute of Food Science and Technology. She is keen to support food & drink businesses to grow and also in helping develop young people embarking on careers in this industry.

Fellow of the Institute of Food Science and Technology

Michael Bell has over thirty-two years’ experience in the food industry. Prior to joining NIFDA he worked in the bakery trade in Northern Ireland and Malta for twelve years. During this period, he worked closely with major retailers and obtained a place on the senior management board of Ormeau Bakery. Michael holds a Food Science (Hons) degree from The Queen’s University of Belfast. He is also a Chartered Scientist and a Fellow of the Institute of Food Science and Technology. He holds a diploma in Company Director from the Institute of Directors. He has been instrumental in the development of NIFDA since its foundation in 1996. For ten years he was involved in developing Northern Ireland Food Chain Certification Ltd. In 2004 he assisted the merging of Taste of Ulster into NIFDA.

Coordinator of CENSE's 'Energy & Climate' research group, is member of the Scientific Committee of the PhD Program in Climate Change and Sustainable Development Policies. Has been coordinating Climate-KIC Hub Portugal since 2016 and is the president of the Department of Environmental Science and Engineering at FCT NOVA since March 2017. Counts with more than 60 publications in international scientific journals. Coordinates studies for public climate mitigation policies for over 20 years.

Graduated in Applied Ecology at FCUL / UL and postgraduate in Geography and Territorial Planning at FCSH-UNL and in Engineering and Management at IST. Co-founder of a biodiversity management start-up in 2010, worked for WWF International and WWF Mediterranean from 2011 to 2013. In 2013 joined ISG Business and Economics School as Sustainability Manager. From 2014 to 2016 was a consultant in biodiversity, ecosystem services and sustainability in the agricultural and forestry area. Ecosystem Manager at Esporão SA since 2017, has been working on biodiversity and ecosystem services in the context of agroecology, nature conservation and stakeholder involvement. Since 2019 has been an Advisor on Ecosystem Management for public and private sector projects. He is also a guest lecturer at the Postgraduate Diploma in Sustainability Management at IDEFE / ISEG and the Postgraduate Diploma in Circular Economics at Lusófona University.

Climate-KIC MEDCLIV Project Engineer for Vine and Wine Adaptation, Montpellier SupAgro

Marc Nougier is a French agricultural engineer. For the past 3 years, he has been working on the solutions to improve value chain concertation and collaboration for the adaptation of agriculture to climate. With the support of EIT’s Climate-KIC, M. Nougier took part in the development of the Agrisource Open Innovation Platform for agriculture and climate change (www.agrisource.org), encouraging multi-sectoral collaboration and knowledge sharing. Within the LACCAVE project of INRA, he contributed to the dissemination of climate adaptation scenarios for the French wine industry to vine and wine stakeholders, as a tool for both regional and national concertation. In the past two years, M. Nougier has been both actor and witness in participatory events organised to drive local climate action in multiple French regions. Within the MEDCLIV Climate-KIC Innovation Ecosystem, his work now tackles the experimentation of local participatory processes for Mediterranean vine and wine stakeholders in order to collectively address climate adaptation and mitigation.

Sustainable Business and Communication Director - Unilever France & Western Europe

Mrs. Jayet-Creusot held several senior positions at Burson-Marsteller and Shandwick before joining Unilever in 1999 as External Affairs and Communications Director. Member of Unilever France Board. Her areas of expertise include, among others, Corporate & Public Affairs, Media Relations, Reputation management and CSR. Passionate about Communication, Sustainability and Change, Sophie works closely with the President Unilever France & Vice President Executive West Europe on sustainability commitments and on developing Purpose Driven Brands strategies like for Dove (self-esteem), Skip (plastics), Signal (oral care for kids) or Knorr (urban farming). She leads the advocacy agenda for the Unilever Sustainability Living Plan in France and the CSR programmes focusing on health, culture, education, self-esteem and environment. Sophie has a strong interest (and personal involvement) in Diversity topic (Women’s Forum, ELLE Foundation, Women Empowerment). She holds BAs in law and in Information and Communications.

President of CAP - Confederation of Portuguese Farmers

Eduardo de Oliveira e Sousa is the President of Confederation of Portuguese Farmers (CAP) and was graduated from Instituto Superior de Agronomia. He was the agricultural director of the National Zootechnical Station (1979-1983), executive director of the Sorraia Valley Watering and Benefits Association from 1983 to 2013, assistant professor of general agriculture and agricultural machinery, and pasture and forage at the Santarém High School (1981 to 1984), Agricultural Director of Sucral (1986 and 1989) and Member of the National Water Council, between 1996 and 2007. He was also president of ANPC - National Association of Rural Owners, Kinetic Management and Biodiversity (1994-2014), currently chairman of the general assembly, director and secretary of the general assembly of CPM - Portuguese Club of Monteiros / National Association of Big Hunting. He is honorary director of the Euro-Mediterranean Community of Irrigators and founder of the Association of Coruche and Border Forest Producers.

Director General of FoodDrinkEurope

Mella Frewen´s previous positions include Director for Government Affairs EMEA at Monsanto, dealing with agricultural biotechnology, conventional agriculture, seeds and agri-chemistry. Prior that, she was Director, International Relations for Cerestar, then Europe´s biggest starch producer. From this role and her ones in the Ferruzi and Eridania Bégin-Say Groups, stationed in Brussels, she has a wide experience of relations with intermational institutions, as European Union and trade associations within the food chain, as well as with the agri-food and non-food, and chemical sectors. Ms Mella Frewen has represented the Food Industry in the several EU Commission Advisory Committees and Standing Committees. She is currently of the EU Commission´s High Level Steering Board for the European Innovation Partnership for Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability, of its Scientific Jury for EUCYS ( Competition for Young Scientists) and of the EU Commission´s TTIP Advisory Group. She is also member of several food industry-related Boards.

APED General Director

Gonçalo Lobo Xavier was advisor at the Portuguese Metallurgical and Metalworking Association (AIMMAP), vice president of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) a consultative body of the European Union, member of the board of Mission Unit Portugal and the national delegate for Innovation in SMEs and Risk Financing within Horizon 2020 and executive director of the Network of Technology Centers of Portugal (RECET). He is a member of the Directorate General of Public Policies of the University of Minho (UMINHO) and in several legislations from 2015. Gonçalo has a degree in Business Administration and Management from the University of Minho and has several degrees in the areas of internationalization and leadership in the Business School of Porto and took the "Leadership winning orchestra leadership" course at the IMD International School in Lausanne.

Director General - ASEDAS - Asociación Española de Distribuidores, Autoservicios y Supermercados

Dr. Ignacio García Magarzo is the CEO of ASEDAS whose represents almost 70% of food retail in Spain. The Association is made up of different types of companies, as well as Spain´s two major purchasing centres. All of them show the diversity of the supermarket format and of Spain food retail. This diversity constitutes a differentiating element of Spanish retail compared with neighbouring countries and guarantees great consumer choice both in ranges and purchasing formats.

CEO - Sumol+Compal

José Jordão is the CEO of the second largest beverage company operating in Portugal, Sumol + Compal SA. He joined the company in 1992, having worked for 16 years in several management positions. Since May 2017, he has chaired the European Fruit Juice Association which is based in Brussels and represents 17 National Associations with the European Community. From 2009 to 2017, from the moment the merger between Sumol and Compal began, José Jordão joined the Executive Committee of the new company, assuming the strategic management of marketing and innovation.

Initiator and Cultured meat speaker

Ira is a designer with a demonstrated history of working in event design, healthcare ICT, marketing and think tanks industry. My legacy as the daughter of Willem van Eelen and 40 years of Clean/Cultured/JUST/InVitro Meat history is converted into speaking about the potential of- and understanding the urgency of this innovation, so that the audience can embrace the idea. I am proud to be able to work on two passions. Cultured meat as legacy from my father and preventive oral healthcare as gift to my son. Irena van Eelen is also chairwoman of the “Invitromeat Foundation” founded by her father in 2002. Member of JUST´s advisory board, Senior Consultant of CAS ando f KET Food. Writer of the foreword to the Dutch, French and German translation of Paul Shapiro´s book “Clean Meat”. Writer of the book “Tien tips voor slimme tieners” about oral health in puberty. She is International Advisor in Oral Healthcare prevention for dental societies and government agencies. Chairwoman of the ToothCamp Foundation, a non-profit organisation working with teenagers on oral health. Boar member of the HERE BUGU Foundation, a development in Mopti Mali.

Executive Board Member of INIAV

João Ribeiro Lima, is Executive Board Member of National Institute for Agrarian and Veterinary Research (INIAV) and Assistant Professsor at Universidade Lusófona in Lisbon, holds a PhD in Veterinary Sciences, epidemic medicine branch, from the University of Minnesota (University of Minnesota) and Master of Veterinary Preventive Medicine (Master in Veterinary Preventive Medicine) from the University of California-Davis (University of California, Davis), and also has a Degree in Veterinary Medicine, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Lisbon. From October 2004 to March 2005, he served as advisor to the Secretary of State for Agriculture and Food of the XVI Constitutional Government.

Head of Business Development & Innovation of FlavorWiki

Christian Sobolta has Senior Leadership roles in FMCG and the Flavour Industry for over 20 years, at companies like Barry Callebaut, Firmenich and Guvaudan. He is passionate about bringing innovation to consumers and connecting the dots in the industry. How? We FlavorWiki capture a 360 view of the Consumers at the moment of truth THE Taste, from the seeds to the spoon.

Senior Business Developer - TNO Healthy Living

As a committed mountain bike racer, nutritionist, strategic thinker and a type 1 diabetic himself, Nard believes that measuring aspects of your health, knowing your behavior and using that information for personalized advice will be the future of food and healthcare. For the Dutch knowledge institute TNO, he has set up a large international research consortium together with Wageningen Research that investigates the technical and social innovations that will enable personalized nutrition through consumer empowerment. This pre-competitive public private consortium is unique in combining different scientific expertise across the whole value chain of personalized nutrition and using real world field labs.

Global Farming Expertise Manager, Danone

Cees Jan Hollander is born in a dairy farmers family. After completing the agricultural education Cees Jan started his career managing a dairy herd of 120 dairy cows. Next was a position at the applied research department of Wageningen University and Research in the group of dairy nutrition. Demonstrating how to apply the research findings on a farm was key here. Cees Jan continued his career at Lely International. This Dutch family owned business is market leader in the automatic milking systems. In the global role of farm management support ensuring farmers that changed to automatic milking the best transition. Since 2014 being the global farming expert at Danone. Currently responsible for the global roll out of the new animal welfare assessment and sharing best practices for economic sustainability. Managing broad topics in fresh dairy that are key for supporting farmers towards regenerative agriculture. Dairy is part of the solution and not the problem.


Recognized by the prestigious Fast Company magazine as Futurist and by CNN as a visionary, Marius Robles was also considered in 2014 one of the 15 most successful entrepreneurs in Spain by prestigious MIT Technology Review. Marius has also collaborated to inspire, evangelize and raise awareness in companies such as GB Foods, Carrefour, Bimbo, Autogrill, Nestlé, Campofrio and other companies in the F&B sector and he is CEO of Reimagine Food that creates and attracts initiatives out to rethink the world of food and cooking, the agrifood industry and the way we meet our food needs in the 21st century. To make this possible, Reimagine brings together startups, food and beverage companies and investors and bridge the gap between these groups and emerging, disruptive technology.

José Pedro Salema, CEO and President of EDIA

EDIA - Empresa de Desenvolvimento e Infra-estruturas do Alqueva, S.A. - Portuguese public company responsible for managing the Alqueva Project - a multi-purpose undertaking that includes Europe’s largest water reservoir, hydropower generation, 2000 km long water distribution network, 120,000 hectares of irrigated land, tourism promotion and a very demanding environment monitoring program.

R&D Project Manager - Sogrape

Natacha Fontes is a Biologist with a PhD in Biological Sciences - University of Minho, Portugal and University Bordeaux Segalen, France; with over 10 years’ experience in both Academy and Wine Business. Passionate about wine, connoisseur of wine industry, with national and international scientific background. Working as R&D manager at SOGRAPE since 2011, the year she has finished a post-graduation in oenology (UC - Escola Sup. Biotecnologia, Porto, Portugal), Natacha is responsible for the planning and management of R&D projects aiming at providing support for innovation of products, processes, marketing, and organization. Since 2017 assists the EASME with the evaluation of the proposal(s) submitted in response of the H2020-SMEInst as an Independent Expert.

Scientist & Associate Director - UC Davis

Dr. Matthew Lange is well versed in food, biological, and health sciences as well as cutting edge food, beverage, information and education technologies. Dr. Lange guides teams toward design, build, and implementation of knowledge environs enabling end-users to make new insightful discoveries, create new products, and improve human living conditions. In addition to teaching Food Product Innovation and Development, a capstone class for Food Science seniors at UC Davis, as well graduate classes in the Master´s in Health informatics program at the UC Davis School of Medicine, in Dr. Lange publishes, teaches, and consults internationally on strategies and conceptual models for enterprise and industrial-scale environment⇔ag⇔food⇔diet⇔health knowledge infrastructures. As Associate Director of the UC Davis Initiative for Wireless Health and Wellness at UC Davis and the Principle Investigator for International Center for Food Ontology Operability Data and Semantics (IC-FOODS) at UC Davis, Dr. Lange is leading efforts to build the semantic and ontological underpinnings for the emerging Semantic Web and Internet of Food infrastructures including working with subject matter experts to design, and assemble multi-ontology frameworks for combining knowledge stores across the environment⇔agriculture⇔food⇔diet⇔health knowledge spectrum and value chain. These infrastructures enable the engineering of query, artificial intelligence, and software components across local and global IoF data stores and ontologies-for semantically enabled senso

Founder - DigitalFoodLab

Matthieu is the co-founder of DigitalFoodLab and has been a FoodTech entrepreneur since 2010. Since he sold his first startup, WeCook, in early 2017, Matthieu is developing DigitalFoodLab in order to grow the European FoodTech ecosystem. DigitalFoodLab delivers talks, expertise and business intelligence to entrepreneurs, investors and food corporates. It aims to help them identify and act on FoodTech opportunities with a unique mix of data (with the most comprehensive database on FoodTech startups) and insights (coming from FoodTech entrepreneurs).

CEO of Qina consulting, Portugal

Mariette Abrahams has bachelors degree in Nutrition and Dietetics at Stellenbosch University in South Africa. Her first job was in Food Service Management and went to UK where worked as Dietitian in the National Healthy Service (NHS) in various clinical roles. Fast forward six and a half years later, she left as a Specialist Gastroenterology Dietitian, gaining experience in managing a department of specialist dietitians as well as managing patients with various gastrointestinal and surgical issues. She also squeezed in the time to complete a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) and run a private practice. After a short stint traveling in South America, she joined a major medical nutritian company as a Medical and Scientific Affairs Advisor specialising in Gastroenterology & Paedriatrics.

Director of the EIT Food Innovation hub for Southern Europe

Begoña Pérez-Villarreal is the Director of the EIT Food Innovation hub for Southern Europe (www.eitfood.eu), aimed to boost innovation involving stakeholders from Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece, Turkey and Israel. Their main activity is related to building a dynamic ecosystem developing collaborative projects and activities in business creation, education, innovation and communication programs to develop products and services contributing to a healthy lifestyle and a sustainable circular bio-economy.

Physics Department, School of Sciences & Technology, UTAD

Professor, Physics Department, School of Sciences & Technology, Universidade de Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro (UTAD)

Insitute of BioEconomy of the Italian National Research Council (IBE-CNR)

The main research field focuses on modeling the effect of climate change on agricultural and natural ecosystems. In this context he was involved in many national and international projects for studing the application of regional (RCM) and global (GCM) circulation models for the assessment of the impacts of climate change on agricultural crops and on the risk of fire. Very current research topics have been addressed, such as the evaluation of the impact of extreme events on the yields of the main cereals, the possible consequences of climate change on vine and olive cultivation areas on a European scale, the qualitative variations of viticultural productions in response to higher temperatures.

Innovation and Technology Director at Frulact

Pilar Morais is currently responsible for Innovation Management & Intelligence at the Group FRULACT-INGREDIENTES P/ A INDÚSTRIA ALIMENTAR, S.A., a value-added B2B ingredient manufacturer with Global presence. Pilar´s interest in the dairy sector began with a higher education 5-year degree in Food Engineering at Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Universidade Católica Portuguesa. It became clear that dairy was a personal passion after an Erasmus internship at the University Reading in the UK, and a first professional experience at the Portuguese cheese manufacturer Queijo Saloio. Having decided to further invest in the dairy sector, Pilar completed an MSc degree in Food Science - Dairy Science option, at the University of Reading, completing her thesis at the Hannah Research Institute in Ayr, Scotland. The will to grow her career into managerial and leadership roles, led Pilar to enroll in an Executive MBA at Porto Business School and in some eye-opening, wonderful food-for-thought courses at INSEAD and Harvard Business School. At Frulact, Pilar and her team are responsible for the strategic definition and coordination of “New Knowledge Axes”, strongly rooted in the sustainable and transparent cooperation among all stakeholders along the agri-food chain. This dedication validates the importance of collaborative Research, Development and Innovation work between Academia and the Entrepreneurial world, which ensures the business´ sustainability in an increasingly connected world.

Chairwoman of Association of Vertical Farming

Christine Zimmermann-Loessl, M.A., holds degrees in Political Science, Sinology and Philosophy from Munich University. Upon graduating, Christine worked as a project manager specialising in risk analysis and crisis management. She then founded the Asia Network Information Center, combining her talents for project management, research and entrepreneurship. Later on, as the representative for the Konrad Adenauer Foundation in China, she took on various roles, including director of the German-Chinese Management Institute. During her time in China, she gained vast experience in the fields of environmental protection, poverty alleviation, and female empowerment. After becoming inspired by her son's interest in vertical farming, Christine got involved in the industry. In 2013, she used all of her experience and networking skills to co-found, with a group of like-minded young people, the Association for Vertical Farming (AVF); since then she has held the role of acting chairwoman of AVF . “Through AVF we are raising awareness and building a network of like-minded people for the implementation of Vertical Farming around the world."