John Kerry served as Secretary of State of the United States from 2013 to 2017. During this time, he was a key architect of the 2016 Paris Climate Accord to reduce carbon emissions and instrumental to the United States signing the historic agreement. A United States Senator since 1984, Kerry became Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 2009, assuming a leadership role on key foreign policy and national security issues, including climate change.
The humanitarian threat posed by rising global temperatures is an issue Kerry has actively campaigned on since leaving public office. He is currently a Distinguished Fellow for Global Affairs at Yale University as well as the inaugural Visiting Distinguished Statesman for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
Secretary John F. Kerry is appearing on Tuesday 3 September, 10:00am-11:00am
Dr Shapiro has spent more than 50 years working in agricultural and agroforestry systems, systems biology, plant breeding, molecular biology and genetics. He led the global effort sequencing, assembling and annotating the Theobroma cacao genome, and initiated the sequencing of the Arachis genome. Shapiro founded the African Orphan Crops Consortium (AOCC) and the African Plant Breeding Academy (AfPBA) in 2011, training mid-career plant breeders to increase the nutritional value of 101 traditional food crops. In October 2017 he launched the Foldit Aflatoxin Puzzle with 460,000 gamers to redesign and improve enzymes to degrade aflatoxins. To date over 1.5 million puzzles have been submitted. In 2018 he co-authored a seminal paper providing proof of nitrogen fixation in maize.
Shapiro’s lifetime of work in plant genetics and the food industry is reflected in his role as Senior Fellow, College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences at the University of California, Davis, as well as a Distinguished Fellow at the World Agroforestry Centre in Nairobi and a Scientific Advisor, MIT Media Lab in Cambridge.
A highly regarded world leader in this space, Shapiro is the author of five books, many articles and dozens of interviews. He speaks regularly on the need for innovation in agricultural production and uncommon collaborations.
Dr Howard-Yana Shapiro is appearing on Wednesday 4 September, 9:15am-10:15am
Sunfed founder Shama Sukul Lee, a software engineer turned food technology entrepreneur, is reimagining the food system, starting with meat. Her breakthrough company, which started in New Zealand, uses clean technology to make delectable meat without the animal, with debut product Chicken Free Chicken becoming a runaway success.
Lee’s vision is to create a highly scalable regenerative protein company that can feed the world without doing damage. Lee is conscious that food is the largest market in the world, the foundation of human health and the largest form of energy we consume, with a massive footprint impacting the whole planet. She believes changes in the food system can significantly transform the world: the better the food system, the better the wellbeing of all life. Next up for Sunfed is developing new products, including beef and bacon, along with continuing its expansion out of Australasia to the rest of the world.
Shama Sukul Lee is appearing on Thursday 5 September, 9:15am-10:15am
Courtney became the host of Landline in 2012 after joining the program in 1993. The daughter of well-known Tasmania print journalist and editor Michael Courtney, she joined the ABC as a cadet in Hobart in 1986. After beginning her career in news, she combined her love of journalism and agriculture when she joined Landline, moving to Brisbane in 2003.
Pip has won numerous awards for her agricultural journalism including a Queensland Media Award for Excellence in Rural Journalism, the Rabobank Star prize for rural broadcasting (Qld), the National Rabobank Star prize and the International Star Prize for Rural Broadcasting for her 2011 two-part feature on the coal seam gas industry in Queensland. In 2018 Pip was inducted in the Queensland Press Club’s Rural Journalism Hall of Fame.
Executive Director - Growth and Innovation, Simplot Australia
Dr Angeline Achariya is a globally recognised and respected leader in commercialising innovations to market, as well as a practitioner of building innovation capabilities and export pathways into Asia markets. Her career spans more than 20 years of diverse international innovation and leadership experience in bluechip multinational companies such as MasterFoods Japan, Fonterra, Yum! Brands and Mondelez International, which has resulted in more than 800 innovations launched in grocery retail, foodservice and quick service restaurants.
Dr Achariya is on a number of advisory boards and committees, most noteworthy of which is the development of Victoria’s Food and Fibre Strategy in 2015. Most recently, she set up a world-first food innovation hub in Australia and over its six year journey saw more than 7,000 food and beverage organisations engage and co-create with the hub. Dr Achariya’s leadership and passion have led to significant impact in supporting the Australian food and agrifood sectors to achieve a strong position to leverage growth through innovation. She is currently Executive Director with a remit for Innovation and Growth for Simplot Australia, where she focuses on creating value from seed to plate.
Director - Food and Agribusiness, Management Consulting, KPMG Australia
Georgie Aley has held senior management and non-executive director roles within the Australian food and agribusiness sector for nearly 15 years. Prior to joining KPMG in 2018 as a director in the firm’s specialist food and agribusiness consulting practice, she held the roles of CEO of the Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology and Managing Director of the Grains & Legumes Nutrition Council. Aley currently serves as a Director of peak industry associations Pulse Australia and Agribusiness Australia.
In her role at KPMG, Aley advises clients across the full value chain from paddock to plate, providing an insightful lens for clients on organisational and industry challenges, ensuring they are equipped to solve complex challenges and remain competitive and sustainable in both the current and future operating environment.
Chair, Food Innovation Australia Ltd
Allan has a background in Applied Science, Business Administration and Commercial Law. Allan is a valued Fellow at the Australian Institute of Company Directors and is currently Chancellor of Charles Sturt University. She has directly influenced a review into wheat export, Horticulture in Tasmania and the allocation of investment in cleaner technologies in manufacturing. Allan is the Chair of Meat and Livestock Australia and Apple and Pear Australia Ltd and serves on the boards for CSIRO, Grain Growers and Innovation Australia.
Managing Partner, SP Ventures
Partner of SP Ventures, a pioneer in venture capital investments in Brazil, Thiago Almeida is currently responsible for the agtech portfolio of the AgVentures I Investment Fund, an initiative led by institutional investors such as the Latin America Development Bank, Sao Paulo State Development Bank, Sao Paulo Research Foundation and composed by some regional private investors as well.
Prior to this, Almeida worked for Criatec, the first tech-based venture capital firm in Brazil, where he was responsible for supporting portfolio firms in their growth phase specialising in the development of agtech business skills, health tech and ITC companies. Almeida has worked for various Brazilian consulting groups, mainly focusing on the study of technological roadmaps for corporate R&D departments. He holds a degree in polytechnical engineering from the University of São Paulo and has a Masters degree specialising in agribusiness.
Sales and Marketing Director, Vue Group
Vue Group is a renowned Australian hospitality business best known for iconic Melbourne restaurant, Vue de Monde, and other favourite venues such as Iki-jime, Seafood by Vue, Lui Bar, Jardin Tan, Piggery Cafe, Geddes Lane Ballroom, Barista by Vue and Burnham Bakery. John Anderson joined Vue Group in late 2018 and since then has been leading the sales and marketing activities for the group’s 12-brand portfolio. Along with his team, Anderson has led the implementation of technological solutions to improve the customer journey and brand touchpoints, resulting in the optimisation of the group’s reservation system and strategic audience engagement.
Before his current role, Anderson served in multiple senior sales and marketing positions, leading teams in a diverse range of industries, such as FMCG, software as a service, heavy machinery, and oil and gas. He graduated from The University of Hawaii with a BS in International Business and earned an MBA from RMIT in Melbourne.
Anderson is a gourmand with an unhealthy addiction to coffee and desserts.
Regenerative Farming Advocate and Educator
Arnott is an award-winning Regenerative Grazier, advocate and educator from Boorowa, New South Wales, Australia. Arnott produces grass-fed Shorthorn Cattle, lamb and pork on his 5,000-acre property “Hanaminno”, using organic, biodynamic and regenerative grazing principles.
He has won several state and national agricultural industry awards for leadership, resource management and conservation, the latest being the ‘Thankful 4 Farmers’ award for Sustainability, Innovation and Community at the recent ‘delicious Australia’ Produce awards.
He facilitates regenerative agriculture education and workshops at Hanaminno and on other farms and community facilities, and advocates working with Nature, not against it, managing the landscape using regenerative practices and philosophy’s, and improving human health with nutrient-dense food.
Find his website here
My name is Rebekah Ash and I have a passion for the role of agriculture in the future of food security, environmental sustainability and nutrition. I am currently an aspiring agricultural science student and leader at The University of Queensland. Throughout my secondary and tertiary education I have always been heavily involved in leadership through various avenues, from initiating outdoor leadership programs to being a school leader at Queensland’s largest school, Brisbane State High School and now an emerging leader in the agricultural industry.
Over the last two years in my university education I have had the pleasure to receive various scholarships and sponsorships, speak at conferences with up to 1,200 professionals and join a podcast on leadership as a guest speaker, among other things. My current projects involve bridging the gap between the rural-urban divide to increase awareness and education in agriculture. Long-term, my ambitions are in international development in agriculture and leadership for poverty alleviation and improved food security as well as more sustainable food systems.
Enterprise Director, The University of Melbourne
Hollis Ashman is Enterprise Director at The University of Melbourne, where she focuses on projects including The Food Value Chain (premium products for export to Asia), Smart Packaging, Future Food Hallmark Initiative and Sustainable Indigenous Agriculture. Ashman was earlier at Mondelez ANZ as Innovation Best Practices Manager and has also led an innovation company, MUSE, where she had multiple clients in the Fortune 500 and helped deliver many innovative new products and opportunities to the marketplace around the world.
Ashman has worked in the electronics industry, the metals industry creating new technology-based opportunities and joint ventures, the appliance industry implementing global strategies, and the food industry, where she led the development of new platforms and opportunities.
Chief Research Scientist, CSIRO
Dr Mary Ann Augustin is an internationally renowned scientist who has published widely and holds numerous patents. She held academic appointments at various universities prior to joining CSIRO and was a Professorial Fellow at Monash University’s School of Chemistry while on secondment from CSIRO (2005-2007). She is known especially for her scientific research and industry translation with impact across various industries including dairy, edible oil and microencapsulated functional ingredients. She has worked collaboratively with others in diverse disciplines including nutrition, bio-spectroscopy and food engineering, as well as business development to deliver high-quality science and translate outcomes with significant impact in industry. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Technology and Engineering.
Director, ARC MedAg Hub, La Trobe University
Professor Tony Bacic is Director of the La Trobe Institute for Agriculture and Food (LIAF) at La Trobe University in Melbourne and Director of the newly funded Australian Research Council (ARC) Industrial Transformation Research Hub (ITRH) for Medicinal Agriculture (ARC MedAg Hub), also at La Trobe University.
Internationally recognised as a leader in plant biotechnology, Professor Bacic’s research is focused on the structure, function and biosynthesis of plant cell walls and their biotechnological application, the application of functional genomics tools in biological systems and, more recently, the application of these tools to transform the production of plant-derived therapeutics (including cannabis) into an integrated, national industry that spans primary producers and manufacturers.
From 1996 to 2017, Professor Bacic held a Personal Chair in the School of BioSciences at The University of Melbourne. He was the leader of the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Cell Walls (2011-2017) team at The University of Melbourne and also Deputy Director of that Centre. He was Director of the Plant Cell Biology Research Centre at the School of BioSciences.
Professor Bacic has had numerous leadership roles within The University of Melbourne, the ARC and the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy. He is a current Board Member of the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, a James Cook University Outstanding Alumnus (2010) and a La Trobe University Distinguished Alumnus (2013).
Acting CEO, Export Council of Australia
Heath Baker has been acting CEO of Export Council of Australia (ECA) since March 2019, with a focus on improving value to ECA members and making its training courses more accessible. Baker started with ECA in early 2017 as Head of Policy. His priority was to make it simpler and cheaper for SMEs to do business internationally. Before this, he spent four years at Austrade in roles including Manager of Trade Policy, State Director for NSW and the ACT, and Trade Commissioner in Seoul.
Prior to Austrade, Baker spent four years in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Most of this time was in the international policy division, where his focus was medium- to long-term strategic policy advice. He also spent 18 months as an intelligence analyst.
Before joining government, Baker spent five years in investment banking, working with Macquarie, JP Morgan Chase and Credit Suisse First Boston. He holds a Bachelor of Economics and a Master of International Studies, both from The University of Sydney.
Young Pioneer, Communications Manager ANZ, Syngenta
Banerjee began her journey into Agriculture at age 13. After interacting with smallholder farmers in India, she questioned how consumers have access to fresh food in Australia whilst smallholder farmers struggle to feed families. This motivated Banerjee to complete double degrees in Agricultural Science and Business. Banerjee is recognised in the global Agriculture industry as a young thought leader and change-maker.
Banerjee has managed and executed on Agribusiness projects across Australia and the Asia Pacific ranging from finance, corporate affairs, on farms and in agricultural investment. She is an advocate for youth in Agriculture and forging bilateral relationships with global markets through strategic Agricultural investments. Banerjee is the Communications Manager for Australia and New Zealand at Syngenta, a leading agriculture company helping to improve global food security by enabling millions of farmers to make better use of available resources through world-class science and innovative crop solutions.
President ANZ & Japan, Mondelez Australia Pty Ltd
Banfield leads Mondelēz International’s Australia, New Zealand and Japan business unit and is based in Melbourne. Amanda has responsibility for 2500 employees across the three countries where Mondelēz International makes and sells iconic chocolate, biscuit and candy brands including Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate, Oreo, BelVita breakfast biscuits, The Natural Confectionery Company and Clorets. With more than 30 years with the company, Amanda has progressed through a number of marketing, strategy and general management country and regional roles across Europe and Asia. She’s passionate about growth in the food industry and is Deputy Chair of the Australian Food and Grocery Council.
CEO, Yume Food
Katy Barfield is one of Australia’s leading food waste warriors. Over the past 12 years, she has dedicated her career to taking action on the issue, whether as founding CEO of SecondBite or by establishing Spade and Barrow, a wholesale fruit and vegetable business connecting farmers directly to hospitality businesses.
Determined to find a way to reduce the 4.1 million tonnes of food going to waste in the commercial food sector each year, in 2014 Barfield created Yume, Australia’s first online marketplace for surplus food. Yume enables food suppliers such as primary producers and manufacturers to sell their quality surplus products to buyers in the foodservice industry. Working with hundreds of leading food manufacturers, such as Unilever and Mondelez, and food service giants like Sodexo and Accor Hotels, Yume has already sold over 970,559 kilograms of quality surplus food, returning $3 million to Australian farmers and manufacturers.
In 2017, Katy was awarded the Telstra Business Women Victorian For Purpose and Social Enterprise.
Head of Climate Risk Governance, MinterEllison
Sarah Barker has two decades of experience as a corporate lawyer, and is regarded as one of the world’s foremost experts on investment governance and corporate disclosure issues relating to climate change. Her expertise is sought by public and private sector clients across Australasia, and by global institutions from the Bank of England to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment.
Barker is a non-executive director of the $30-billion FUM Emergency Services and State Super and the Responsible Investment Association Australasia, and on the Steering Committee of the Australian Sustainable Finance Initiative. She teaches the Australian Institute of Company Directors’ flagship Company Directors’ Course and Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership’s Earth on Board program. She is also an academic visitor at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment at University of Oxford.
Special Advisor - Food Waste, Fight Food Waste CRC
Mark Barthel has a 25-year track record of driving sustainable innovation in agriculture and food, including more than 15 years quantifying and preventing food loss and food waste in the UK, Europe, North and South America, Africa and Australia.
Barthel has been involved in developing the international evidence base for food loss and waste, creating national baselines (volumetric, compositional and behavioural) and annual tracking of progress at corporate, sectoral and national levels. He has also helped establish world-leading voluntary agreements between the public and private sector to reduce food waste and has run award-winning behaviour change campaigns. Throughout his career, Barthel has helped implement more than 50 research and innovation projects with food and drink companies and their trade bodies.
Barthel’s qualifications include a Bachelor of Environmental Science (with Honours) and a Master of Integrated Environmental Studies. He joined Australia’s Fight Food Waste Cooperative Research Centre in July 2019.
Chief Corporate Officer, Aurora Cannabis
Cam Battley is Chief Corporate Officer of Aurora Cannabis, one of the world’s largest and fastest-growing cannabis companies. With state-of-the-art production facilities and exclusive sales agreements in the European Union and beyond, Aurora operates around the globe pursuing new and emerging cannabis markets.
A passionate spokesperson for the medical cannabis industry, Battley started with Aurora Cannabis in March 2016 and has been a key driver to Aurora’s emergence as a global leader.
I’m a 17-year-old student at Flinders Christian Community College in Tyabb. I have been studying agriculture since Year 7 and have grown up with an assortment of animals, who I absolutely love working with. My father owns a tropical fish farm that wholesales fish to pet shops and businesses, so I have always grown up around that lifestyle. We have also started breeding parrots in the last couple of years, which has been a great experience. On the weekends, I work at Petstock, allowing me to work with animals while earning an income, which is all I could ever ask for.
Pope Francis once said “Wasting food is like stealing from the poor”. I believe this fully. I see people every day throwing away food: at school, at home and when walking around the city. Not only is wasted food ending up in landfill, it also uses up fresh water we cannot spare, results in land being cleared and adds to global warming due to the carbon emissions. The lives of millions of farm animals are wasted and billions of dollars’ worth of human labour, too.
When we avoid and minimise our food waste, we can help feed the world’s growing population and help to contribute to a sustainable agricultural future for Australia. This is something worth fighting for.
Australia China Business Council Victoria
Virginia Birrell joined the Australia China Business Council Victoria as CEO in August 2014. Her primary responsibilities are to optimise the performance and strategic growth of ACBC Victoria and to ensure member companies are provided with key training, policy advice and strategic networking activities to grow their business opportunities with China.
She created working groups in the key China Australia Free Trade Agreement sectors which are platforms for advocacy and B2B information sharing, and provide rich resources to feed into the branch’s events program, which has welcomed over 15,500 attendees over the last five years. Birrell works closely with the ACBC Victoria Executive Committee, the Branch’s Working Groups, Austrade, DFAT, Federal and State Governments, the China Chamber of Commerce in Australia, the Chinese Consulate and with over 3,000 individuals connected with the Victorian branch.
Founder and CEO, The Edible Bug Shop
Skye Blackburn is an entomologist and food scientist with a passion for sustainable food practices. She was Australia’s first ‘farmer of edible insect and opened Australia’s first edible insect farm, The Edible Bug Shop, in 2007. Blackburn is now an expert on insect farming techniques and has developed automated technologies to assist with insect farming. Her mission is to provide sustainable protein to more people, so she has also developed ingredients and food products that utilise the insects that she farms. She hopes these food products, which are produced on the same site has her edible insect farm, can help more people include insect-based food in their diets. Through cooking demonstrations, media appearances and collaborations, Blackburn is always raising awareness about the benefits of farming insects as a food source. Blackburn knows there are a lot of misconceptions about eating bugs; she aims to convince people that they are a sustainable, planet-friendly alternative protein source you can turn to often.
Director - Industry Affairs, Australian Food and Grocery Council
Samantha Blake is Director of Industry Affairs at the Australian Food and Grocery Council. She works with members on a wide range of commercial, supply chain and retail trade issues impacting the Australian market. Some of the ways Blake helps members and the industry is by working on the Food and Grocery Code of Conduct, end-to-end value chain opportunities, commercial and sales capabilities, and enhancing the financial competitiveness of the FMCG industry. Members draw on Blake’s insights from her 18 years of experience working in the industry in Australia and United Kingdom. This work encompasses all areas of food operations including executive management roles in the manufacturing, technical and supply chain divisions of FMCG organisations.
I am a 16-year-old Melbourne teenager who has recently founded a startup that aims to eliminate plastic pollution in the beverage industry by providing a cheap, portable, plastic-free and delicious alternative. The startup is called Lëfiz. At 14, I founded my first charity called Bats4Life, to provide cricket bats to disadvantaged young people, which gained widespread media attention and reached an international community.
I’m passionate about the power of consumers to make choices to save our future. At the end of the day, the function of business is to solve consumer problems, therefore it is actually us, as individuals, who have the ability to make a difference. This is far more powerful than government intervention.
Future Foods Expert, Evolution Meadows
Rosie Bosworth is a future foods consultant, speaker and entrepreneur with a key focus on alternative protein systems such as cell-based meat, plant proteins and dairy alternatives. She is also interested in how new technologies are changing the face of how food is produced for global sustainability and health.
Bosworth advises businesses, industry and government on various strategic pathways forward in the future of food and agriculture, as well as providing international insight into the alternative protein market globally. She is also the founder of Evolution Meadows, an early start plant-based dairy alternatives startup focused on health and nutrition.
CEO, Food Agility CRC
Mike Briers was named in the Knowledge Nation 100 as Australia’s chief evangelist for big data and the internet of things (IoT). He was also appointed Australia’s first Industry Professor of IoT at UTS. He is the Founding CEO of Food Agility CRC and is also a Co-founder and Director of the Internet of Things Alliance Australia and of the Knowledge Economy Institute.
Briers’s pioneering efforts in fintech and e-research led to the global success of SIRCA as well as the founding of big data company RoZetta, e-research service provider Intersect Australia, and the co-founding of Capital Markets CRC and agtech business The Yield. In 2016 Briers was recognised with Queen’s Birthday honours and was appointed as an Officer in the General Division of the Order of Australia for his distinguished service to the finance and digital technology sectors.
I am a year 12 student at Shearwater Steiner school in Mullumbimby. I am passionate about sustainable farming and for the past two years have been working on setting up my own egg business, which has now been running successfully for six months. I grew up in China and love being back in an area where I know where my food comes from. It is absolutely vital for the next generation to understand what is happening in the world of food production and how we can be a part of making it better. We need to go back to the beginning and be aware of what we eat. Our future is in the hands of young farmers and their teachers. Our education in this industry needs to start from an earlier age, hence the need to re-think our current education systems in order to achieve this.
I love being an influence on other kids at my school and helping them achieve goals. I would like to develop and share my business-education model so as it can be used by schools around the globe.
Chief Executive Officer, Food Standards Australia New Zealand
Mark Booth is the Chief Executive Officer of Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ), a binational government agency that develops and administers the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code as well as undertaking a number of other food related activities.
Prior to joining FSANZ in early 2017, Booth had a career predominantly in the health sector looking at strategic policy issues. He has worked in the public, private and academic sectors in the UK, New Zealand, Australia and the USA.
Founder, Your Prep
I am driven by a passion to create space for others to grow, flourish, harness potential and prosper through connection and development. My goal is to break down the barriers for those suffering from depression and anxiety, something experienced by so many yet discussed by so few. I believe nutrition to be a gateway drug to happiness and clarity. Through connecting over a meal we can all battle the invisible disease which is taking eight lives a day in Australia. I believe in bringing families together.
Deputy Secretary, Department of Agriculture
Cindy Briscoe commenced with the Australian Department of Agriculture in October 2016 and is responsible for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Policy. Prior to this, she was responsible for Corporate Governance and Strategy, Finance and Business Support, Information Services and Office of the General Counsel.
Briscoe has more than 25 years’ experience in the Australian public service. She has been a member of the SES since 1998 and has held senior positions at the Department of Human Services, the Australian Taxation Office and ComSuper.
Managing Director, Bisnis Asia
Helen Brown has more than 25 years’ experience in writing, speaking and analysing complex subjects and issues. She regularly travels to Asia and lived and worked in Indonesia for four years as a Correspondent for the ABC. She left a long career in journalism to focus on improving the business relationship with Australia’s neighbours in Asia through her start-up (www.bisnisasia.com). Her critical insights in the region come from first-hand experience in dealing with and researching the Indonesian government, political and business sectors and she maintains a strong network in Indonesia’s private and public sectors. Helen is the Fellow for Digital Economy at The Australia Indonesia Centre, where she keeps across tech trends and writes and presents on contemporary Indonesia and its role in South East Asia. She grew up in regional Victoria where her family still own and manage a cropping and livestock property.
Bella Burgemeister comes from Bunbury, Western Australia. She is the author and presenter of the book Bella’s Challenge, a kid’s take on the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. It sets out simple challenges kids can take to help their communities and the planet. Burgemeister has presented her book to over 6,000 students around Australia. All proceeds from book sales have gone back into sustainable development projects.
She is also Co-president of Millennium Kids, a child-led environmental organisation, Co-organiser of the Perth and Bunbury School Strike 4 Climate Action events and a 2017 and 2018 Finalist in the WA Young Achiever of the Year Awards. In 2018, she won the WA Youth Award for Sustainable Futures and was named CCWA Young Environmentalist of the Year.
Co-founder, FreshChain Systems
Calvert is Co-Founder of FreshChain Systems, a fully integrated end-to-end blockchain-enabled traceability and consumer trust system. Calvert has worked across New Zealand and Australia with previous senior roles in major FMCG companies and Australia’s largest grocery retailer in development and marketing of fresh, short and long-life products.
Calvert’s background entails supply chain, operations, manufacturing and marketing and has been involved in the startup and launch of both branded and private label products to various retailers around the world.
CEO, Red Meat Advisory Council
Red Meat Advisory Council is Australia’s only supply chain policy leadership forum for Australia’s 82 000 red meat producers, lot feeders, manufacturers, retailers and exporters.
As Chief Executive Officer, Anna Campbell is responsible for driving RMAC’s industry-wide goal of achieving $7 billion dollars in growth by 2030. This includes all aspects of company financial and operational delivery and being the public figure of RMAC to the agribusiness community, Australia’s three levels of government and international diplomats.
Campbell’s key accomplishments including establishing a series of red meat roundtables (intimate events connecting decision-makers directly with the business community), launching the first-ever State of the Industry report in 2017, hosting the inaugural Red Meat Nation event at Australian Parliament House, collaborating on the Australian Beef Sustainability Framework and spearheading multiple supply chain policy platforms in areas of trade, transport and efficiency.
Chamber of Deputies, Parliament of Italy
Nicola Carè’s achievements are many. Currently a member of the Chamber of Deputies in the Parliament of Italy, he is best known in Australia from his time as CEO and Secretary General of the Italian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, a position he held between 1999 and 2018. He was also founder, publisher and editor-in-chief of Voi Tutti magazine, Australia’s leading Italian lifestyle magazine, from 2005 to 2012 and a member of the Community Advisory Committee at SBS television between 2007 and 2010. Carè promotes Italian culture, art and design in Australia and has supported Art Gallery of NSW, Sydney Symphony and Opera Australia over many years. He has also held board and leadership positions throughout his career and is Honorary Professor at the University of Wollongong.
Lecturer, The University of Melbourne
Dr Rachel Carey is a Lecturer in Food Systems in the Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences at The University of Melbourne. Her teaching and research focuses on food policy, food security and the governance of sustainable food systems. Dr Carey has a particular interest in how cities are fed and in the resilience and sustainability of city food systems in the context of population growth, climate change, and declining supplies of the natural resources that underpin food production.
The University of Melbourne is among the world’s leading universities and makes distinctive contributions to research, learning and teaching and engagement. It seeks to harness the strength, breadth and depth of its research to help meet significant global challenges.
Director of Technology, Australia China Health Accelerator
Tim Carroll is the Director of Technology for the Australia China Health Accelerator (ACHA) and Asia-ready Programme Director of UprAsia. He is also the Director of Start Global Pty Ltd, which delivers the innovative “glo project”, placing international students in Australian startups to build global thinking and global connections.
Carroll is the former Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) State Director Victoria and senior representative for Austrade in Victoria with global responsibilities across all industry sectors and a lead strategic role in Health sciences and technology. He has deep experience living and working in global markets with a passion for Asia and the amazing opportunities available in these high-growth areas. He has been working with an all-of-Asia focus for the last four years. Caroll has a wealth of experience in executive management in the medical and health sciences, international market development work in Asia, and innovation and commercialisation support.
CEO, Foodbank Australia
Brianna Casey is the CEO of Foodbank Australia, the largest hunger relief organisation in the nation. Foodbank supplies food and groceries to almost 5,000 charities and schools, working with farmers, wholesalers, manufacturers and retailers to source food.
Before joining Foodbank, Casey spent 14 years in agri-politics in NSW and Queensland, serving as Policy Director at NSW Farmers and as Executive Director of Queensland Farmers’ Federation. Casey has served on a number of Ministerial Advisory Councils and committees throughout her career, most recently having played a key role in the development of the Australian Government’s first ever National Food Waste Strategy.
She was recently awarded a Pro Bono Australia Impact 25 award and is also Australia’s representative for the Global Foodbanking Network.
Senior Investment Specialist, Austrade
Caston is dedicated to the growth of the Australian Agriculture and Food sector through access to overseas capital and markets. With over 20 years’ corporate advisory experience, she has extensive knowledge of the agribusiness sector, including key investment drivers and analysis techniques, and has a track record of advising foreign investors on agricultural strategy and acquisitions. She has connections at all levels of the food supply chain. Caston is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD), holds a Master of Applied Finance and Investment from the Financial Services Institute of Australasia (FINSIA), and a Bachelor of Applied Science – Mathematics, from QUT.
Dr Antonio Castillo is a Chilean-Australian biotechnology engineer, founder and director of BiotechBridge. He has more than 15 years of experience in technology innovation and research and has worked in industry and academia in Chile, Germany, Israel, USA and Australia. He arrived in Melbourne in 2014 as a skilled migrant sponsored by the State of Victoria and has since collaborated with Invest Victoria, Global Victoria, Austrade and the Consulate General of Chile in Melbourne as an expert advisor in agrifood technologies, aquaculture, medicinal cannabis and more.
Dr Castillo holds a PhD in Molecular Genetics from the Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel, a Master of Science specialising in Biotechnology from Ben-Gurion University, Israel, and a Bachelor of Engineering in Aquaculture from Universidad Andrés Bello, Chile.
I am a motivated and enthusiastic student with clear life aspirations. I am currently studying at Australian Islamic College of Sydney, located in greater western Sydney. I strive to do my best in my everyday life including my studies. I have a positive attitude towards the environment and a desire to learn even more about it. I think that I have an opportunity to not only change but save the environment we are living in, but without getting the word out about this, it will be very difficult.
Group Director, Communications, H&H International
Managing Director, Rocket Seeder
Emma Coath is the Managing Director of Rocket Seeder, an accelerator for early-stage Australian startups in food and agriculture, and a Director of GROW, an agrifood tech accelerator based in Singapore. Coath has a passion for building a sustainable food and agriculture sector through supporting innovative entrepreneurs. She has worked in food and agriculture for more than 20 years in both public and private sector organisations.
Coath holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Deakin University, a Master of eBusiness from RMIT University and is currently completing a PhD in Food Supply Chain Management through Monash University.
Deputy Director, CSIRO Agriculture and food
Professor Martin Cole is an internationally recognised food scientist and accomplished science leader with over 25 years of experience in research management across government, academia and industry.
Professor Cole is currently Deputy Director of CSIRO Agriculture and Food. Prior to this, he was Director of CSIRO Food and Nutrition. Professor Cole joined CSIRO as Chief of Food and Nutritional Sciences in January 2010 and was appointed as the first Chief of the division of Animal, Food and Health Sciences in July 2012.
Senior Research Scientist, CSIRO
Dr Michael Conlon is a senior research scientist at CSIRO Health and Biosecurity in Adelaide, South Australia, with over 30 years of experience in conducting pre-clinical and clinical research studies relating to diet and health. A focus of his work has been on understanding the effects of dietary fibres (especially resistant starch), proteins and polyphenols on gut physiology and other tissues of the body through their influence on the growth and activities of large bowel microbes. Numerous studies involved the investigation of probiotics and prebiotics. This research has been applied to understanding and helping to prevent inflammatory bowel disease and colorectal cancer, as well as other conditions such as autism.
CEO, Cordina Group
Louisa Cordina is CEO of Cordina Group, Australia’s oldest poultry processor, a fourth-generation family business and one of Australia’s leading food innovators. Highly awarded and respected within the food industry, Cordina has built a reputation around partnerships, stability, trust and, most importantly, always thinking differently. Cordina operates three manufacturing facilities and numerous supporting facilities.
Louise Cordina has led the business through a period of changing consumer priorities and industry consolidation. Originally joining Cordina in 1996, Louise has been a strong advocate for innovation, agility and finding opportunity through thinking differently in a volatile, competitive marketplace. Today, the business is widely recognised as a leader in innovative fresh food and has received many national awards for products and partnerships.
Director of Sustainability, Australian Food and Grocery Council
Cosier has over 30 years’ experience in both the Resource Recovery Industry and in the Food and Grocery Industry. Like many, he started his working career packing shelves in supermarkets while at university. Since then he has worked for multinational grocery companies, was CEO of a privately owned Australian food manufacturing company, and represented small to medium enterprises on the Australian Food and Grocery Council board.
He then moved into the Resource Recovery Industry and was involved in Council Contracts, collections, MRF processing and was a member of the NSW EPA Industry advisory panel for the China Sword Taskforce. He is currently the Director of Sustainability at the Australian Food and Grocery Council, a member of the National Waste Policy Industry Panel, the Federal Food Waste Steering Committee and a participant in the Fight Food Waste Cooperative Research Centre.
Program Manager, ClimateWorks Australia
Eli Court currently leads ClimateWorks’ Land Use Futures initiative, a multi-year cross-sectoral program to drive sustainable food and agriculture. Previously he led a range of collaborative initiatives targeting energy efficiency and renewable energy in buildings.
Prior to joining ClimateWorks, Court supported the momentum towards community renewables and energy efficiency as Energy Policy Advocate at the Moreland Energy Foundation (now Australian Energy Foundation), worked in legal policy at the Victorian Department of Justice and as a lawyer for the Victorian Government Solicitor. Court’s professional life is dedicated to helping people transition to a zero-emissions future. His expertise is in making sense of complex technical and social research, and building and maintaining supportive and cohesive teams and partnerships that can translate that research into effective on-ground projects. He holds a Bachelor of Arts/Law from The University of Melbourne and is also a graduate of the Centre of Sustainability’s Fellowship Program. He is a fluent speaker of Bahasa Indonesia, having previously lived and worked in Jakarta and Salatiga.
CEO, Cann Group
Peter Crock is an experienced public company senior manager with deep knowledge and expertise in marketing and technology development. Cann Group is focused on breeding, cultivating and manufacturing medicinal cannabis for sale and use within Australia, and beyond. Cann was issued Australia’s first medicinal cannabis research license in February 2017, in addition to Australia’s first medicinal cannabis cultivation license in March 2017
Since joining Cann in May 2016, Crock has reset the business plan, as directed by the board, and led the company through a successful initial public offering to list on the Australian Securities Exchange, raising $13.5 million while bringing outstanding institutional and cornerstone investor support. This was followed by a subsequent $70-million capital raising within the same year to accelerate the company’s expansion program. Under this expansion, Cann is now progressing the construction of a state-of-the-art greenhouse facility near Mildura, Victoria that will deliver up to 50,000 kilograms of medicinal cannabis dry flower per annum.
Managing Director, SKG
Daniel Crozier is the Managing Director of SKG, Australia’s leading hygiene assurance company in the food manufacturing industry. Pioneering the use of cutting edge biotechnology, training methods, safety protocols and equipment, SKG provides its clients with the highest level of band protection, allowing them to sell their products in both domestic and international markets with confidence.
As well as driving quality and invitation to benefit its customers, SKG also places an extremely high value on ensuring that all its employees have a safe and supportive work environment and are always paid fairly and on time, something which is often sadly overlooked in the industry.
Founder and CEO, AgUnity
David Davies was named by Global Agripreneur of the Year by FAC’s Global Championships in 2018 for his work as CEO of AgUnity, where he helps lift low-income farmers out of poverty. AgUnity provides a smartphone and Blockchain solution that improves trust and co-operation for smallholder farmers and is also used as a platform for a range of problems, including mobile banking for the financially excluded, and data collection for developed world farmers.
Davies is also co-founder of EscaVox, an IoT and distributed encrypted data platform that is conducting the world’s largest fresh food supply tracking project with Woolworths in Australia, tracking 250,000 pallets, over $1 billion of fresh produce.
Founder of Luke's Bees
Luke de Laeter’s interest in bees began just two years ago but he has an infectious enthusiasm for these pocket-rockets of biodiversity and sustainability. De Laeter established his own business to spread the word on the power of bees to secure our future wellbeing and offers Luke’s Bees Incursions at schools, festivals and community organisations. At school for most of the week, de Laeter spends his weekend organising incursions, caring for hives and jarring honey that he sells.
Medical Doctor, TV Host and Author
Dr Sandro Demaio trained and worked as a medical doctor at The Alfred Hospital in Australia before going on to promote good health and nutrition through television, festivals and more.
Since 2018 he has been CEO of EAT, the science-based, global platform for food systems transformation, and prior to that, he was Medical Officer for non-communicable conditions and nutrition at the global headquarters of the World Health Organization. He holds both a Master of Public Health and a PhD and completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship at Harvard Medical School from 2013 to 2015.
Dr Demaio co-hosts weekly TV show Ask the Doctor, an exploratory factual medical series available in Australia and around the world on Netflix; is founder of festival21, a free celebration of community, food, culture and future in Melbourne; and wrote Doctor’s Diet, a cookbook based on science and inspired by a love of good food. Dr Demaio is interested in systems innovation and leadership, public health entrepreneurialism, and solving externality-driven disease.
Associate Professor, The University of Melbourne
Tim Dempster leads the Sustainable Aquaculture Laboratory at The University of Melbourne. His research group focuses on innovating new techniques and technologies to boost the sustainability of the rapidly expanding aquaculture sector.
CEO, Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation
Brooke Donnelly is a senior strategic and commercial executive specialising in product stewardship, recycling and sustainability. She has proven strengths in leading the successful operational and commercial implementation of best-practice national product stewardship and recycling programs for industry, government and consumers.
In her current role of CEO at the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) Donnelly develops and leads APCO’s strategic direction and vision. APCO enables businesses, government and industry to design and utilise more sustainable packaging throughout the supply chain to reduce environmental impact.
Donnelly is the co-founder and facilitator of the Product Stewardship Cluster (PSC), an organisation working to accelerate Australia’s journey to a circular economy through product stewardship.
Over the course of her career, Donnelly has worked in alignment with a broad range of regulatory authorities, industry groups and product stewardship organisations such as the DrumMuster, AIP Oil Container Collection and the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme. She has also held numerous senior leadership titles including Chief Operating Officer for Greenpeace Australia Pacific, NSW Sustainability Manager for Visy Industrial Packaging and CEO at Catalyst Development Group.
Prior to this, Donnelly spent her formative years managing her third-generation family business, specialising in the recycling of industrial packaging.
From a young age, I have been interested in marine and agricultural life. My passion for agriculture has led me to own stud sheep that are shown around Victoria, as well as captain a team of 12 to 17-year-old students who are equally as passionate about livestock and the environment as I am. My heavy involvement in the agricultural industry has led me to great successes around the country, and has created many opportunities to improve the future of Australian farming. I am a strong advocate for the education and involvement of young people in agriculture, to open their eyes to important issues in our country and around the world that will affect us in years to come.
Woolworths Advisor, Cale and Daughters
Cale founded the Green Edge vegan grocer and café in 2014 and started to source plant-based products for his customers. He found this extremely difficult to do effectively as most products had to be sourced overseas, were expensive and lacked taste. Having become successful, Drouin sold Green Edge and started to source products for retailers as he followed his passion. At Cale and Daughters, the focus is to normalise high-volume and locally made plant-based food production in Australia. The philosophy is that the best way to get price competitive plant-based products into the market is through a direct relationship between manufacturers and major retailers.
Drouin is a great communicator and has consulted widely to the vegan community over the last few years.
Director, BeanStalk AgTech
Patrick Duffy grew up on a large family broadacre property in north-east Victoria. He is a former CEO of E Agri, an Australian indoor vertical farming startup. Prior to this Duffy spent 10 years in Asia building multi-billion-dollar industrial projects working for Xstrata and Glencore, and started his own successful management consulting company in Hong Kong. Based in Melbourne, he still has strong ties to the north-east region and is an advisor at BeanStalk AgTech, the Matwa Group in Singapore and Western Australian gold miner Red 5 Limited. He is also a Director of Benalla’s Tomorrow Today Foundation.
Sam Duncan is an avid entrepreneur and technologist from Armidale, New South Wales, Australia. Duncan began his career as a logistics officer in the Australian Air Force where he undertook several operational deployments to Africa and the Middle East before a passion for soil and agriculture led him to found FarmLab in 2016. FarmLab offers paperless soil testing to everyone from farmers to home gardeners, using an app and barcode system that streamlines what was previously a multi-step process.
Since founding FarmLab, Duncan has worked with The University of Sydney on the Soiltech Project to turn peer-reviewed soil science into tools that are accessible to agronomists and growers. He has recently returned from an Austrade delegation to Israel to learn about the ag-tech landscape there.
Managing Director, MediPharm Labs Australia
Warren Everitt brings a wealth of senior leadership to MediPharm Labs Australia, having run his own small businesses as well as achieving success in the Asia-Pacific for a leading international digital marketing agency.
Everitt completed a Bachelor of Computer Science (Programming) with Honours and was on the leading edge of web development and digital marketing, working first in Canada and the UK before building the Asia-Pacific division of a large enterprise marketing agency, MarketOne. Over eight years, Everitt opened four offices, adding more than 200 staff in Melbourne, Singapore, Bangalore and Tokyo. He boasts a 15-year history in sales and marketing, consulting to some of the biggest companies in the world.
Scientific Affairs Associate, Swisse Wellness / H&H International
Molly Fairweather graduated from La Trobe University with a Masters in Dietetics in 2018. She has a passion for preventative health through advocating for meaningful and achievable lifestyle changes. Molly currently applies her passion for nutrition and sustainability at Swisse Wellness, driving innovation in new product development through assessing scientific research to bolster the efficacy of new products. She is an active member in the Swisse Sustainability Champion program and hopes to continue her professional development in the sustainability and health sectors.
Corporate Consciousness Director, Hungry Planet Intelligence
After spending 10 years between developing her holistic nutrition practice and roles in international aid, Ferguson found the perfect balance of passions for social impact and sustainable food systems as Corporate Consciousness Director of Hungry Planet Intelligence, an AI drone-based software platform for farmers in the industrial hemp space. By raising the level of consciousness, both internally and externally, in the way companies do business and create impact, she is leading the efforts to bring hemp to market in a way that will have a positive impact on our food systems, our health, and our planet.
Managing Director, Annex Foods Pty Ltd
Fetterplace is an experienced Managing Director in the Food & Beverage industry. He is currently Managing Director and shareholder of privately owned Australian food group ANNEX Foods Pty Ltd. He founded Red Tractor Foods while at Annex – with the brand now available in 11 countries led by Australia, China, Singapore and the USA selling a range of healthy Australian made cereals, snacks and cooking ingredients. Fetterplace’s prior experience includes a Director role at Swisse Wellness, and leadership roles at Coles Supermarkets, Carlton & United and Foster’s Group beer and wine divisions. He is married with 4 children and lives in Melbourne, Australia.
Founder, Grounded Foods
Veronica Fil is a behavioural economist by trade, combining the principles of psychology and advertising to the consumer market. Until the end of 2018, she applied this ethos to her role as Business Manager of the boundary-pushing Melbourne restaurant Lûmé. Along with her partner, chef Shaun Quade, Fil helped build Lûmé’s reputation of a technology-driven and anti-traditional approach to fine dining.
Fil now provides the business strategy behind the duo’s plant-based food brand Grounded. Her keen eye for emerging market trends initially lead them to create a range of sustainably produced specialty cheeses, containing no nuts, soy, nasty oils or artificial additives. Now the pair are expanding the Grounded range to address a global shift in consumer eating habits towards plant-based, low-sugar, gluten-free and low-allergen foods – and they remain completely unwilling to compromise on flavour.
Founder Product Development and Sustainability Director, Biopak
Richard Fine is a second-generation packaging professional. After reading the book Cradle to Cradle – remaking the way we make things, Fine decided to use his knowledge of the plastics industry to address the growing problem of plastic pollution and in 2006 he founded BioPak, a company with a mission to replace single-use plastic disposable packaging with more sustainable alternatives. Today BioPak is the leading supplier in Australia and New Zealand of compostable single use disposable packaging, and the business is currently expanding operations into Europe, the UK and Singapore.
Fine was a founding member of the Australasian Bioplastics Association and is currently a member of the Association’s marketing committee. He is also actively involved in a number of industry working groups focused on developing policy and promoting compostable packaging as one of the solutions for a circular economy.
Managing Director, Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology
Fiona is Managing Director of the Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology (AIFST). She is an experienced Corporate and Regulatory Affairs professional who has been involved in leading and facilitating change and developing management strategies across a portfolio of food policy and regulation matters in global FMCG and NGO environments. Fiona holds a Bachelor of Applied Science (Food Technology) from the University of Queensland and a Masters of Nutrition Management from the University of Wollongong.
Director, Beanstalk AgTech
Cal Foulner is Co-founder and Director of Beanstalk AgTech, a venture building business operating at the intersection of the fast-evolving agtech and agriculture sectors in Australia and across Asia. Foulner is based in Australia where he and his team work to support the commercialisation of agtech startups in Australia and Asia. By having this exposure, his team helps farmers and agribusinesses innovate by scouting best-in-class technology and facilitating tech trialling and adoption.
Foulner has a background in business and has extended this to deep expertise in social enterprise. He found his passion for working on community agriculture projects across South East Asia through an organisation he founded at the age of 21, Upside Nepal. As a passionate advocate for tech-for good, Foulner was also previously the Australian Community Manager of Random Hacks of Kindness, a not-for-profit organisation that coordinates a community of 1,000 technologists to solve challenges for charities through a hackathon model.
I am a Year 8 student from Abbotsleigh who is extremely passionate about making a change in relation to current world issues. Some of these include climate change, waste (both food and rubbish), gender equality, education and violations of human rights. I first became passionate about these issues in Year 1, when I heard about the impact of petrol on plants and the environment. I started taking action on these issues because I felt adults were not taking our generation’s future seriously, and our politicians were ignoring science. Everyone wants our hard work at school to pay off, therefore we need a future, but everyone, including our leaders are taking it away.
Chairman and Founder, FoodShot Global
Victor Friedberg has been at the forefront of innovation, investment and sustainability for over 20 years. As Co-founder of S2G Ventures he was a principal force in developing the S2G mission, culture, strategy and team. Through his work at S2G, he pioneered system investing as a strategy for investing in food and agriculture and applied this approach in building the S2G portfolio. As Managing Director, Friedberg led the investments into Beyond Meat, sweetgreen, Ripple, Apeel Science, Maple Hill Creamery, Ataraxis, FishPeople and Lavva among others.
Friedberg is Founder and Chairman of FoodShot Global, a blended capital investment platform with 20 of the world’s leading food and agricultural banks, funds, foundations, universities, corporations and NGOs. FoodShot Global’s GroundBreaker Prize is currently the largest prize for food and agriculture.
He was named by Forbes magazine as one of the Top 25 deal makers and influencers in Consumer Products in 2016.
Co-CEO and Founder, Bridge Hub
Grant Fuzi’s career spans law, agriculture and innovation. In his early career, he worked across the globe as a leading corporate and finance lawyer. His last legal role was establishing and leading the Australian offices of leading global law firm Allen & Overy. Since leaving the law, Fuzi has spent his time working across and investing in the agriculture and innovation ecosystem in Australia and globally. He is Founder and co-CEO of Blue River Group, an Australian impact investment services firm, as well as being a founder and co-CEO of Bridge Hub, a global innovation and commercialisation partner for the agrifood tech sector.
Chief Operating Officer, ripe.io
Rachel Gabato is the Chief Operating Officer of ripe.io, helping drive their mission to enable a platform where everyone will be able to access transparent information on the origin, journey and quality of their food. Gabato has over 20 years of proven management and leadership experience with both private and public cloud-based technology companies. Throughout her career, which includes stints in London and Hong Kong, she has gained experience in different functional areas growing her knowledge of customer success, professional services, program management and product management. As the COO of ripe.io, she currently manages product management, professional services and HR/administrative functions.
Gabato holds a degree in Business Management and Marketing from Cornell University, where she also played NCAA Division 1 basketball.
Secretary of the Commission for Foreign Affairs and Immigration, Parliament of Italy
Francesco Giacobbe was born in Catania in 1958 and emigrated to Australia at the end of 1982 where he currently lives with his wife Maria Rosaria and their three children. He successfully graduated from university in 1990, obtaining a Bachelor of Business with Distinction and receiving a University Medal (UTS University Medal). He then continued his studies, completing a Master of Accounting and Finance in 1995 in as well as a PhD in Accounting in 2007 with a thesis on the control systems of international joint ventures.
Giacobbe began his political career at a very young age. From the age of 16 he participated as an organiser and promoter in various student activism movements and organisations of young unemployed individuals. He held various managerial positions in political and associative organisations of the Italian left (at a provincial, regional and national level) and organised numerous activities, in particular in relation to unemployed youth.
In 2013 he was elected into parliament as Senator of the Republic on the Democratic Party list. Today he is in his second parliamentary term as the secretary of the Commission for Foreign Affairs and Emigration. Since 1983, he has played a leading role in the organisation of cultural and commercial visits and exchanges between Italy and Australia. He also does fiscal and commercial activities and teaches Management Control as a Senior Lecturer at the University of Technology in Sydney.
Director - Intellectual Property, Treasury Wine Estates
Anna Gibson is the Global Director of Intellectual Property at Treasury Wine Estates – one of the world’s largest wine companies, listed on the Australia Securities Exchange. Ms Gibson leads the company’s global IP group and is responsible for the development and implementation of its IP policies and procedures, and the protection and enforcement of its wine brands in over 150 countries worldwide – which include Penfolds, Wolf Blass, 19 Crimes, Lindemans, Matua, Seppelt, Beringer and Beaulieu Vineyards. Anna has also been responsible for the roll-out of a proactive and comprehensive brand protection program across Asia to monitor and enforce against copycat and counterfeit operators in the online and offline space.
Before joining Treasury Wine Estates, Gibson worked in the IP corporate and litigation teams of top-tier firms in Europe, New Zealand and Australia, for a range of leading brands in the fast-moving consumer goods, healthcare and fashion industries. Her formal qualifications include a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Science (Hons) from the University of Auckland.
Director of the Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences (CNAFS) in the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture
Professor Gidley is Director of the Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences (CNAFS) in the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation at The University of Queensland. Research themes within CNAFS include ‘Smart Selections’ (how to identify the right combinations of raw materials and processing to deliver consumer-preferred foods), ‘Naturally Nutritious’ (maximising the intrinsic nutritional properties of agricultural products in foods and ingredients) and ‘Uniquely Australian’ (identifying and validating opportunities for elite products from foods and ingredients that can only have come from Australia). Professor Gidley is also the current Chair of the Australian Academy of Sciences’ National Nutrition Committee.
Since I was young I have had a love for animals, which began with horses. I’ve ridden and trained horses for many years including playing polocrosse, which has contributed to my passion for animals growing over time. When I entered Year 7 at Flinders Christian Community College, I joined the sheep showing team where we have a small Corriedale stud. From here, I became the Captain in 2015, managing the sheep stud and team along with my co-captain.
During my time at school, I have competed at many local agricultural shows exhibiting the school’s stud sheep as well as assisting other breeders. I have competed in many junior judging competitions achieving various placings through wool, meat, sheep and dual-purpose sheep competitions. I’m interested in the future of breeding technologies, which will allow us to strongly influence the traits in animals that can cause detrimental health effects, such as an overshot or undershot jaw on a lamb, affecting its ability to feed, or the fly strike many Australian sheep face. We now have the technologies to display the traits we are after without the generations of time-consuming breeding.
Investment Committee Chair, The Impact Fund
Adam Gregory is the Chair of the Investment Committee at The Impact Fund, a boutique funds manager focused on investing in assets that deliver a market rate financial return, but have a social or environmental benefit. He is also the CEO and a co-founder of Light Warrior Group, a private investment group for ventures and Investments including Hydralyte, Jamieson Coote Bonds, Made by Cow, Made Establishment Group, MyDNA, The Impact Fund, OurCrowd, Stratosphere and Wanderlust. Prior to founding Light Warrior Group, Gregory had a 16-year career in investment banking and finance. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce from The University of Melbourne and is a Chartered Accountant.
Gregory’s community involvement includes being a director of the Lightfolk Foundation, an advisory board member of the National Institute of Integrative Medicine and a volunteer at Hawthorn Football Club, sitting on its Investment Management Committee and Dare to be Different Committee.
Co-founder, Hemp Farms Australia and MaMilk
Since 2013 Lauchlan Grout has been involved in both the domestic and international cannabis industry. Not only has he co-founded successful domestic cannabis companies, he has also brought successful international brands into Australia.
Co-founding Hemp Farms Australia in 2013, Grout has been part of the Australian hemp industry since its infancy. Through trial and error, a focus on genetics and good industry relations, he has helped build a reliable supply chain, capable of producing multiple successful crops every single year. Grout has also co-founded several cannabis related startups, including Therabis Australia, Australia’s first cannabis based pet food, as well as MaMilk, Australia’s first hemp milk. As a result of these accomplishments, Grout has experience in all facets of the cannabis industry, domestic and international, from primary production all the way through to retail.
Founder and Chairman, Seeds&Chips | Founder, Sustain&Ability
Marco Gualtieri is an entrepreneur from Milan and the founder and chairman of Seeds&Chips, which includes the world-renowned event on food innovation and sustainable development, The Global Food Innovation Summit. Since its inception in 2015, Seeds&Chips has worked to bring innovators from around the world together to find practical solutions through collaboration and cooperation. To that end, the Global Food Innovation Summit brings together hundreds of startups, companies, universities, institutions, investors, accelerators and incubators, opinion leaders, policymakers and students from all over the world. Recently, he signed a Memorandum of Understanding between Seeds&Chips and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization to promote food innovation, education and youth engagement and awareness-raising initiatives.
In 2019 he founded Sustain&Ability, a sister company of Seeds&Chips, and created the Goals on Tour project, a promotional campaign to create awareness around the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in partnership with several UN Agencies.
Director of Australasia, Euromonitor International
David Gudgin is the Director of Australasia at Euromonitor International has been with the company for 25 years. In his role, he currently oversees all Euromonitor ANZ operations. He was previously a Marketing Director at Euromonitor in London and responsible for marketing, promotions and sales globally. He has extensive experience working on food trends, government, banking, advertising and consulting research projects. Gudgin holds a BSc (Hons), University of Nottingham and a postgraduate diploma in marketing from London Metropolitan University.
Assistant Secretary, Agriculture and Food Trade, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
As Assistant Secretary, Agriculture and Food Trade in the Office of Trade Negotiations, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Guihot is Australia’s lead Agriculture negotiator in the World Trade Organization Committee on Agriculture and leads a whole government effort to address non-tariff barriers. Guihot was Australia’s Agriculture Counsellor to Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos (2016-2019) and China (2009-2011), responsible for facilitating trade in agricultural products, providing advice on market access and opportunities, building relationships with government and industry groups. Guihot previously worked in a number of roles in the Department of Agriculture including agriculture negotiator for Australia’s Free Trade Agreements with Japan, China and India; managing trade relationships with key markets in ASEAN, South Asia and North Asia; and as a manager in biosecurity and agricultural policy areas.
I’m Holly Guthrie (@hollyvguthrie) and I can only be described by my mantra of uniquely basic, moderately alternative and individually remarkable. I have a keen interest in the effects of urban sprawl and, by extension, sustainability, GMO (particularly for Australian agriculture), preservation of unique Australian natural features and maximising use of all earth’s natural features without further impacts. I also love my geography field trips and attending sustainability clothes markets.
If I had the once in a lifetime opportunity to speak to a room full of like-minded people I would share my enthusiasm and knowledge on the beneficial properties of GMO food, focusing on Australia’s agriculture, the salinity crisis and consumer access to GMO foods. Australia has never been an easy place for the agriculture industry, but by implementing a perfect equation of biotechnology and the great creative minds of Generation Z, a solution to our crop crisis that ultimately assists in maintaining environmental sustainability could be reached.
National Sector Head, FMCG, Colmar Brunton
A passion for stalking supermarket aisles and all things food and wine saw Denise Hamblin trade in neuroscience for consumer science, where she now leads the Consumer Goods division of Colmar Brunton, one of Australia’s largest market research agencies. In her role as the National Sector Head of Consumer Goods, Hamblin leads a large variety of research programs both locally and globally, informed by sensory science, marketing science and qualitative and quantitative techniques and analyses. Hamblin is particularly interested in research that tunes into the evolving preferences of Australian consumers, strongly aligned with Colmar Brunton’s resolve to make a difference.
My name is Rami Haouchar. I was born in Sydney, Australia, however, my father was born in Lebanon and my mother was born in Sydney. I currently attend the Australian Islamic College of Sydney, located in the growing suburb of Rooty Hill. Alongside school, I attend other extracurricular activities to keep myself busy including kickboxing, powerlifting and casual work at a restaurant. I’ve engaged myself in various kickboxing competitions and have found myself extremely passionate about things within the sports spectrum. I aspire to attend university and undertake courses in either business, economics and engineering.
I think it’s important for us as individuals to support local communities, businesses and governments by doing our part and pushing them to leap towards the usage of renewable energy rather than polluting forms of energy such as coal. Luckily, millions of individuals are deciding to better their future by living eco-friendly. The smallest things make the biggest difference. Let’s step up with hands together and make the difference we want to see.
Chief Scientist, Mainstream Aquaculture Group
Dr Paul Harrison co-founded Mainstream Aquaculture in 2001 with a vision to create an environmentally sustainable business for the future based on best practice aquaculture technology. Harrison has worked in Australia and abroad. He holds a PhD in aquatic biology and is uniquely qualified with a strong track record in fish production across multiple species, fish hatchery operations, and research and development both in aquaculture and more broadly in marine biology. He has designed and commissioned numerous recirculating aquaculture systems, has an excellent understanding of the biological requirements for aquaculture, and a demonstrated capacity to merge these skills into successful commercial ventures.
Nick Hazell is an experienced food innovator, lecturer and consultant who is CEO of Australian startup v2food. v2food is developing plant-based meat, building on a close collaboration with CSIRO to create tasty, sustainable and healthy products. Its first products will be launched nationally in the second half of 2019.
Hazell holds a Master of Manufacturing from Cambridge University. He worked in aerospace and chocolate manufacturing before moving into research and development in the food industry, working at global multinationals in The Netherlands and Australia. He was R&D Director at Masterfoods and at PepsiCo Australia and New Zealand, working on products like Grain Waves, Red Rock Deli, Sunbites and Smiths. He lectures in the Bachelor of Creative Intelligence and Innovation at UTS and has consulted to CSIRO and the meat industry.
Director - China Practice, Asialink Business
Nick Henderson has more than 20 years experience in business development and operations in China. He began his career with Ikea and was instrumental in establishing the company’s first stores in Shanghai and Beijing. He was also General Manager of the market entry and business development boutique advisory firm, Intralink. Before joining Asialink Business, Nick was the China General Manager for the brand strategy firm FutureBrand, a subsidiary of the Interpublic Group. He has worked on projects for Alibaba Group, Bank of Shanghai, Daimler Benz, CITIC Private Equity, Mengniu, Yintai Group, Changhong and the Shanghai Government (Lujiazui Group).
Henderson has assisted more than 100 companies with their business growth in complex Chinese markets focusing on sectors including industrial, food and consumer, telecommunications, life sciences, environmental technologies and software.
Derk Hendriksen is a Dutch native with over 25 years of experience in global consumer packaged goods companies and social entrepreneurship. He is passionate about business transformation, sustainable growth, partnership ecosystems and building high-performance teams. At The Coca-Cola Company he delivered results in strategy, marketing, general management and commercial leadership. Most recently he led the company’s efforts to embed sustainability throughout its operations, in order to accelerate its reputation, the relevance of its brands and, ultimately, its growth.
Hendriksen also started Coca-Cola’s social enterprise unit EKOCENTER, aimed at elevating the wellbeing of disadvantaged communities around the world. It was on the back of these experiences that he decided to focus on what matters most to him: the nexus of purpose and profit. He is currently an Advisor and co-CEO of TREASURE8, a company that identifies and captures food waste streams from consumer packaged goods and agricultural companies, converting them into high-value, tasty, and nutritious ingredients and products.
Director, Oz Medicann Group
An experienced clinician, Dr Frances Henshaw is also a researcher and scientist. Her PhD explored the mediation of inflammation in diabetes. Her primary research interest is in the prevention and management of diabetes-related complications and my current research focuses on the management and prevention of diabetes complications using natural medicines including hemp and cannabis.
Partner, Price Waterhouse Coopers
With over 19 years at PwC, Heraghty is the leader of PwC Australia’s Agribusiness industry group. Raised in the regional New South Wales town of Parkes, in the middle of eastern Australia’s grain belt, he has a passion and strong family connection to rural Australia and agriculture. As the national agribusiness leader, Heraghty assists clients and client teams across all the businesses within the firm, with over 400 agribusiness specialists across Australia. Globally, Heraghty regularly connects and works with agribusiness leaders in other PwC offices across the world.
Director Agriculture Industry Development, Agriculture Victoria
As Director of Agriculture Industry Development, Megan has overseen Agriculture Victoria’s initiatives to develop a medicinal cannabis industry in Victoria including the Medicinal Cannabis Industry Development Plan, launched by the Minister for Agriculture in January 2018. Being the first state to legalise medicinal cannabis, undertake cultivation trials and target industry development, Agriculture Victoria and the Victorian Government has led the way in medicinal cannabis reform in Australia.
Having worked in the agriculture portfolio for almost fifteen years, Megan is an experienced policy leader responsible for a range of policies and programs to grow Victoria’s existing and emerging agriculture industries. Beyond medicinal cannabis, this has included strategies to develop the Victorian wine industry, support on-farm investment in energy efficiency and digital agriculture.
Asia Director, Beanstalk AgTech
Rob Hulme is a fifth-generation Australian farmer and agribusiness executive. His career with Bayer covered research and development, marketing, sales, strategy and commercial operations over 26 years. He was previously the Team Lead for the Global Technology Licensing team based in Germany, and Country Head for Vietnam and then Greater China. More recently he led the Bayer Innovation Group for the ASEAN region and Business Development for APAC, which included digital farming and third-party cooperations.
In 2018, he co-founded Beanstalk AgTech, an innovation company which focuses on helping agribusiness solve big challenges to help reinvent our food system across Asia-Pacific. THe company’s focus areas include waste, climate adaption and sustainable protein. He lives in Singapore with his family.
Food Futurist, Future Cubed
Tony Hunter is a global futurist and consultant specialising in the future of food. He is a passionate believer that agrifood tech offers massive opportunities to solve the problems of sustainability and feeding a growing global population. Hunter travels the world using his unique combination of scientific qualifications and 30-plus years of business experience to convey to businesses and event audiences how new technologies will impact food industries. This combination of skills and knowledge gives him a unique viewpoint on the future of food. Hunter wants the world in 2050 to look back and thank, not condemn, the food industry for its actions.
CEO and Co-founder, Fresh Supply Co
David Inderias wants to transform how consumers purchase food. His company Fresh Supply Co is more than a traceability solution: it’s a marketing asset for companies with great stories to tell. Using Blockchain, Fresh Supply Co writes the processing data of perishable goods into content that delivers education, recipes, producer stories, sustainability metrics, and more. The idea? To delight and engage the consumer, while adding value for brands.
With a background in medicine and a collection of successful ventures in the advanced manufacturing sector, Inderias has turned his attention to using digital technology to provide relevant information to consumers on food products in a whole new way.
Founder and CEO, Milk 2.0
Kristina Ivanova is a trained linguist with qualifications from Moscow State Linguistic University and a Master of Marketing from AUT University in New Zealand. She is Founder and CEO of Milk 2.0., which she began in 2018 from her home kitchen after struggling to find good plant-based food options. Ivanova took on the challenge to create plant-based milks that would fill the gap in the market for high-quality fresh plant products made in a sustainable way. Since the launch in October 2018, Ivanova has seen organic growth from direct to consumer. Milk 2.0 has been featured in many local and international publications and was recently invited to TED2019 in Vancouver to showcase Milk 2.0.
General Managing Partner, Big Idea Ventures
Andrew Ive founded Big Idea Ventures, a hybrid venture capital firm focused on solving the world’s biggest challenges by working with great entrepreneurs. Big Idea Ventures invests in companies in the alternative protein and plant-based food sectors, with the firm’s first fund being the New Protein Fund.
Ive himself has invested significantly in early-stage and pre-seed food companies. He’s also a business advisor in multiple verticles and is focused on innovation and developing high-growth businesses opportunities. He serves on the Tufts Nutrition Council advisory board, is a Friedman School Entrepreneurship Advisor and a Harvard Business School graduate.
My name is Meg Jenkins and I am 15 years old. I live on the Mornington Peninsula. In my free time, I love to hang out with friends and family and especially my Golden Retriever Molly. At Global Table, I would like to talk about adapting to the plastic challenge through innovation. I have a passion for eliminating single-use plastic bags in supermarkets. It concerns me that fresh food products such as fruit and vegetables are sold in excessive plastic wrapping. For the last five years, I have campaigned to ban single-use plastic bags including talking at local council meetings, primary school and even a segment on BTN.
President, Victorian Farmers Federation
David Jochinke is a third-generation farmer who operates a family property at Murra Warra (30 kilometres north of Horsham in Victoria), producing various broadacre crops and finishing prime lambs.
At Longerenong College, Jochinke studied a Diploma of Applied Science and in later years had the honour of being awarded scholarships from Nuffield Australia and the Australian Rural Leadership Program. For more than a decade, he has been heavily involved with the local Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) district, which led to his election as the last VFF treasurer and chair of the Finance Committee, as well as Vice President from 2012 to 2016. Jochinke was elected as VFF President in 2016.
I am originally from India and have moved to Melbourne along with my family in search of better education. I am a member of Brentwood Secondary College’s Green Team, Student Representative Council and Peer Support. I’m very interested in the issue of cell phone tower radiation and its effects on bird eggs. With 4G technology coming in, we need to have a greater study and understanding about this issue.
Associate Director, Growth, ANZ, Mondelez International
Kaplan is Associate Director of Growth, ANZ, at Mondelez International. Mondelēz International is one of Australia and New Zealand’s favourite food manufacturers, enriched with more than 100 years of tradition and a portfolio of iconic brands including – Cadbury Dairy Milk, The Natural Confectionery Co., Pascall, Oreo and BelVita. Their purpose is to empower people to snack right. As a company, they strive to lead the future of snacking around the world by offering the right snack, for the right moment, made the right way.
Ng Pei Kang is the CEO of TRIA, where he leads a team of engineers and innovators in developing sustainable packaging solutions. One year ago, they achieved a technology breakthrough that allows a zero-waste outcome for single-use foodware. This ecosystem solution, Bio24, could be a game-changer for the industry.
Pei Kang has a background in industrial design, R&D and technology management. He was previously the design innovation lead for the global portfolio of Philips TV and Home Theatre System, where he directed R&D activities across Philips Netherlands, Hong Kong and Singapore. He is also an occasional speaker for design thinking, sustainability and entrepreneurship.
A/Director, Waste Programs, NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment
Amanda Kane manages the NSW Government’s $100 million program to get food and garden waste out of landfill, including through education, donation, kerbside collections, investment in processing capacity and the development of markets for the recycled product. Funded from the waste levy, the program is transforming food waste management in NSW and delivering new research, data and opportunities to help improve understanding of the causes and drivers for food waste in the NSW community and ways to reduce it.
Executive Director, Biopacific Partners Limited
Dr Andrew Kelly has worked on all sides of the food industry, from agricultural production to bioactive ingredients and finished foods. His research career began in agriculture with Bachelors, Masters and PhDs from Australia and Canada. Dr Kelly then led three research institutes in Australia and New Zealand before helping to establish the largest venture fund in the region across this spectrum, the $100-million BioPacificVentures in 2005. He now also leads a specialised service firm, BioPacific Partners, helping global corporates to engage with and invest in emerging innovations from Australia and New Zealand. Dr Kelly has spent much of his life in his home state of Victoria, but he now lives in Auckland.
Precision Ag Manager - Australia and New Zealand, John Deere
Ben Kelly is the Precision Ag Manager for John Deere in Australia and New Zealand. He grew up on a cropping and livestock property near Gulargambone in Central New South Wales and went on to complete a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Newcastle. In 2014 his passion for precision agriculture led him to complete a Graduate Certificate in Precision Agriculture from the University of New England.
Kelly joined John Deere in 2005 and has spent the last 14 years supporting John Deere customers through various field-based roles across Australia including technical and customer support, sales and marketing and precision agriculture. In Kelly’s current role, he is responsible for monitoring and identifying trends in Australia and New Zealand’s precision agriculture and building a business case for future product development.
Head of Trade and Economic Section, Delegation European Union
Keijzer is Head of the Trade section in the Delegation of the European Union since August 2018. He has extensive experience in multilateral and bilateral trade negotiations, dating back to the WTO/Uruguay Round, and has successfully led negotiations on the review of WTO-agreements on Information Technology (ITA-2) and Pharmaceuticals. Most recently, he was lead negotiator on trade in goods for the EU-Japan agreement. He has also worked on other bilateral trade agreements including West-Africa, Tunisia and Mexico. He was posted in Tokyo and previously in the EU WTO-mission in Ge-neva previously. Before working for the European Commission he worked for the Dutch Central Bank and the Ministry of Economics of the Netherlands. Mr Keijzer holds degrees in political science and economics from the Universities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam and from France’s Ecole Nationale d’Administration (ENA).
I am a 15-year-old girl from Australian Islamic College of Sydney in Western Sydney who is passionate about the issues our world is facing and keen to spread awareness on worldly issues. I am inspired to motivate the current generation as well as ensuring a sustainable future for all. I am determined to re-use, recycle, better humanity and help reverse any environmental challenges that our earth is currently facing. I am immensely passionate about equality and will strive to make changes for the future throughout my life.
I am a student in year 9 from Sydney who has a genuine interest in geography and especially the issues associated with it, such as water scarcity. Water scarcity affects around 2.8 billion people who don’t have access to sufficient water for at least one month out of every year. Today there are more than 700million people in the world that live without a safe and clean water supply.
My parents come from Pakistan, and I know a couple of families that solely depend on their agricultural businesses for a source of income. And water scarcity makes that business very hard to run, and in the near future it will not get any easier. Due to climate change, poor water management and a lack of political will to deal with the crisis, it is estimated by 2025, Pakistan will not have much water left. However, there are ways to deal with this crisis, and these solutions can be used not just in Pakistan but everywhere.
I hope to provide solutions to these problems to make the lives of other people better.
My name is Shaheer Khan. I am currently attending the Australian Islamic College in Sydney. I enjoy playing tennis and love being involved in school activities. I was School Captain throughout Year 6 and loved it.
I’m concerned that the future of food is becoming too modified. Many children today don’t get to eat organic food. This has a great impact on the health of young individuals. I believe that our forefathers set a great example for us and we should follow their footsteps by growing everything organically and simply. Let’s take a stand and fix the food of our future.
CEO, Food Frontier
Thomas King is a social entrepreneur, international speaker and the CEO of Food Frontier. For almost a decade, Thomas has driven initiatives on environmental issues, poverty alleviation and the food industry across five continents. He was named VIC Young Australian of the Year in 2015 and a Myer Innovation Fellow in 2019.
Realising the limitations of the current food system to sustainably feed our growing population into the future, Thomas founded Food Frontier, Australia and New Zealand’s independent think tank and industry accelerator for alternative proteins. Food Frontier aims to create a more diversified, sustainable and future-proof food system that is good for people, great for business and better for the planet.
Director, National Farmers Federation
Andrea is a board director with the National Farmers Federation and SproutX, Australia’s first agtech accelerator. She is from a fifth-generation Australian farming family and is passionate about Australian agriculture. She sees a future where digital technology underpins our farming sector being the most competitive and innovative in the world. She provides consulting and advisory services with a core focus on the translation of science into practice and building strong relationships between research and industry. Andrea’s experience includes 15 years in marketing and product development with IBM, Optus and News Limited, and six years leading a soil policy think tank program at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney. She holds a Bachelor of Business (Marketing) and a Master of Sustainable Development.
Founder and CEO, Bring Me Home
Jane Kou is the Founder and CEO of Bring Me Home, an app that connects people to nearby cafes, restaurants and grocers with quality surplus food that would otherwise go to waste. The mission for Bring Me Home is to eliminate food waste by making surplus food accessible and affordable. Bring Me Home is listed as one of the top 10 startups in 2019 by SmartCompany, and the first food tech company in Australia to be doing an equity crowdfunding raise, raising up to $1 million in seed funding.
State Manager Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania, Export Council of Australia
Krantz is the Export Council of Australia’s State Manager for Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania. Before the ECA, Krantz worked with multinational companies, SMEs and international organisations. In Australia she was responsible for BlueScope’s trade and investment strategy across the company’s international footprint. Before this, she was in Switzerland, at Swiss Re and the International Trade Centre (the joint agency of UNCTAD and the WTO).
Founder & CEO, The Silk Initiative
Andrew Kuiler is the founder and CEO of The Silk Initiative, China’s only specialised food and beverage insights-driven brand consultancy. Kuiler managed a global career in leadership positions at multinational agencies in Shanghai, New York and Sydney before carving his own path with the launch of TSI.
With nearly 20 years’ experience working with major brands including Campbell’s, PepsiCo, Arla, VitaCoco, Goodman Fielder, Pizza Hut, Unilever, US Dairy, and Mars Wrigley, Andrew has a keen understanding of the strategic approach brands need to thrive. His expertise has also led to him being featured in major publications including Entrepreneur magazine and Smart Insights. He is often sought by think-tanks, financial institutions, and government organisations for his insights on the Chinese consumer market and branding.
General Manager Nutrition, Freedom Foods Group Limited
Dr Sonja Kukuljan is an Accredited Practising Dietitian and Director of Sports Dietitians Australia, with a special research interest in the nutritional benefits of whole grains and milk across the lifespan. Her PhD research investigated the effects of exercise, milk, calcium and vitamin D on muscles, bones and functional health outcomes in Australians, which has been published in high-ranking international medical and scientific journals.
Dr Kukuljan joined the team at Freedom Foods Group in 2016, to positively influence public health outcomes through the promotion of good nutrition and lifestyle habits. As part of a dynamic team committed to Making Food Better, her role involves investigating and communicating the benefits of dairy, grains and other wholesome ingredients on health outcomes across the lifespan. Dr Kukuljan is also actively engaged in preserving the integrity of these nutritious components as they are incorporated into the good, wholesome foods which Freedom Foods Group is committed to delivering.
Head of Investments, Grok Ventures
Jeremy Kwong-Law heads up investments at Grok Ventures, focusing on investing in early-stage technology companies. He sits on the boards of two next-generation food companies: Sustenir Agriculture and Goterra. Prior to Grok, Kwong-Law cofounded two fintech startups, and spent seven years working in investment banking at Macquarie Bank and Rabobank.
Executive Director, ProfilePrint
Alan Lai is the Founder and Executive Director of ProfilePrint. Before starting ProfilePrint, Alan was the Assistant CEO of IHDpay Group, a Hong Kong tech investment company focusing on digital know-your-customer and fintech solutions. Prior to this, he spent seven years in CapitaLand in roles including head M&A/investment in United Kingdom, General Manager South China Ascott and assistant to Group CEO President, after eight years at the Republic of Singapore Air Force with notable appointments such as Flight Commander, Deputy Head New Career Scheme Office, Staff Officer at Chief of Air Force Office.
Lai completed a post-graduate management program at Tsinghua University and graduated with French-Singapore double degrees (first-class Honours) from Ecole Centrale Paris and National University Singapore under a government scholarship. Laiis a World Cities Summit Young Leader, National Youth Council INSPIRIT member and NTUC Youth Career Network Mentor.
CEO, Fight Food Waste CRC
Dr Steven Lapidge is the inaugural CEO of the Fight Food Waste Cooperative Research Centre (CRC). He has spent much of his 20-year career working for or with agribusiness CRCs with a strong focus on new product development and commercialisation. Dr Lapidge led the development of the Fight Food Waste CRC bid and in recent years has represented Australia at G20, OECD and national food waste forums. He is a member of the National Food Waste Strategy Steering Committee and a Non-Executive Director of the Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology.
Dr Lapidge’s qualifications include a Bachelor of Science with Honours, a PhD and a Master of Business Administration. He is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and European Summer School for Advanced Management (Denmark). His previous research saw him awarded the prestigious Fulbright Professional Coral Sea Scholarship (Business/Industry) in 2010. He has published over 70 scientific papers and reports.
Founder, Export Connect
Najib Lawand has 25 years’ experience leading Australian food-export businesses and agri-food industry development teams. He is well known for his capabilities in opening up new export markets and has worked extensively in the Middle East, North- and South-East Asia. Since 2010, Lawand has worked for NSW Trade and Investment, advising businesses and government on growth in the agri-food industry. In his most recent role as General Manager Market Development with Food Innovation Australia Ltd (FIAL), Lawand has collaborated with individual businesses, governments and industry groups to deliver projects that have resulted in new export market opportunities.
In June 2017, Lawand founded Export Connect, which uses the skills, connections and expertise he has acquired over the past 25 years to help companies select the right market, connect to the right buyers, and grow. Since June 2017, Lawand has delivered over 120 market reports and assessments, covering more than 20 export markets, working with clients including Chobani, Masterfoods, Woolworths, Robert Timms and Birch & Waite.
Chief Executive, Australian Made Campaign
Ben Lazzaro was recently appointed as Chief Executive of Australian Made Campaign Ltd, the not-for-profit organisation responsible for promoting and administering the nation’s iconic green-and-gold Australian Made, Australian Grown logo. Lazzaro has been a key contributor to the success of the organisation and the Australian Made logo for many years, joining in 2011 as Marketing and Communications Manager. In 2016 he took on the role of Deputy Chief Executive. Appointed Chief Executive in 2018, Lazzaro oversees the administration and promotion of one of Australia’s most recognised and trusted brands.
He has an engineering and communications background with more than 15 years’ experience across a variety of management, sales, marketing and communications roles in consultancy, agency and in-house capacities. His experience includes integrated strategic marketing communications programs and full-spectrum branding campaigns optimised to deliver successful business outcomes.
Manager - Agritourism and Heritage, Romani Pastoral Company
Clare and David Lee manage Windy Station on the Liverpool Plains on behalf of Romani Pastoral Company. After starting in the role two years ago it became evident how much history was attached with Windy and its historic woolshed. Lee saw an opportunity to reconnect the station with the community and beyond and so began investigation of an agritourism business.
Juggling three small children, 2,500 breeding cows, 50,000 acres, a team of seven people, and a heritage-listed woolshed is proving to be a challenge Clare and David cherish every day.
Serena Lee is one of the co-founders of Farmwall, a startup that designs urban farming technology. She is a passionate designer with a love for urban food production and building smart, resilient cities. A Canadian raised in Singapore, Lee is committed to using food as the global communication tool to drive long-lasting, sustainable change. Together with Geert Hendrix, the duo plan to bring their indoor urban farming experiences across the world.
Lee was included in Top 30 Under 30 Industry Players in Food Service in 2018, as well as SmartCompany’s Smart 30 Under 30 in 2019.
CEO, Retail Global Events
Retail Global is known as the conference for retailers, by retailers. Founder Philip Leahy successfully launched and built one of the largest eBay businesses retailing CDs and DVDs, achieving Australia’s top volume of sales in all seller categories for a number of years. He then decided to launch a conference to help others who were tackling marketplaces and cross-border sales.
Fourteen years on, Retail Global takes place annually, with events in Australia and the United States that highlight the biggest trends and challenges in retail and ecommerce. Sourcing more than 100 speakers for these events each year gives Leahy a breadth of knowledge of the people and ideas who are leading the future of retail.
Founder and Chair, Oz Medicann Group
John Leith is the Chairman and Founder of Oz Medicann Group (OMG), established in March 2017. He is also the owner and founder of 2DISCOVER, and J&J Properties in Australia. Leith’s vision for OMG is to connect patients with life-changing medicine through the development of medicinal cannabis and therapeutic products for existing and new regulated markets in Australia and the rest of the world.
OMG’s unique business model brings together health, wellness, education and treatment, which is delivered through its subsidiary companies Hemp Oz, Educann and Oz Medicann Pharma. Hemp Oz was one of the first companies in Australia to be granted their licence to produce and create hemp consumable products. Hemp Oz Kombucha and Hemp Oz Water was the first to launch when prohibition ended. All products are currently stocked in over 600 outlets across Australia. OMG were recently granted their Medicinal Cannabis and Cannabis research licence by The Office of Drug Control.
Managing Director, Quality Associates
Li is the Managing Director and Co-Founder of Quality Associates. Quality Associates is a well-respected provider of quality services to Australian leading retailers and manufacturers and their supply chain. Li has a Master of Applied Microbiology & Biotechnology and has spent over 15 years working in food safety and quality and product innovation sectors across Australia and China. He has extensive experience across retail, manufacturing, hotel chains and food service channels. He is a results-driven, self-motivated and resourceful managing director with a proven ability to improve business operations in order to maximise company profitability and efficiency. He possesses excellent communication skills and is able to establish sustainable and profitable relationships with customers, suppliers and stakeholders across Australasia.
Working in an Australia leading retailer provided him with a deep understanding of retail global best practice and its requirements. He shares his knowledge via working and coaching over 200 suppliers across various industries in Australia, China, New Zealand and other Asian countries. Li’s Chinese background and network in China provide a fruitful bridge to international enterprises. Li is Agri-food committee member of Australia China Business Council. He also has a vast network in Australia local Chinese community. Li is the Director of Chinese Performing Arts Development Association in Melbourne and the General Secretary of The Federation of Henan Chamber of Commerce Australia. Li is also Victoria Chapter President for Huazhong Agricultural University Alumni.
Managing Director, Yumbah
After a long history in agribusiness and following an unwavering belief in the future of aquaculture, Yumbah began research in 1994 and invested in the greenfields Narrawong abalone farm development in 1999 along with other like-minded investors.
Jonathan Lillie was integral in the formation of Yumbah in 2008, serving as director from that time on. Prior to that he created Ausab, a single-desk abalone marketing company, in 2006 which led to the creation of Yumbah’s AUSAB brand. Jonathan is also co-founder of Bay Sea Farms, a Victorian mussel farmer/ shellfish hatchery, and co-owner of Fisher Direct, which imports and distributes quality seafood within Australia. In 2016 he became Managing Director of Yumbah Ltd.
I am a new immigrant from Malaysia in Year 10 at Brentwood Secondary College. I am passionate about the environment and playing my part to make this world a better place for the future. Since arriving in Australia in June 2019, I have participated in the Plastic Free July and National Tree Planting Day. I am also a member of the environmental team at my school.
I am concerned with the misuse of plastic. I tried to lobby my former high school to campaign against the use of plastic garbage bags and tried to promote the usage of biodegradable plastic bags instead. Sadly, as a teenager, my voice was not heard. I then did my part by organising a beach cleanup event during the school holidays and my friends and I collected a total of eight bags of plastic and bottles. It was a small step but, I believe, a necessary one.
I’m Crystal Lim and I’m currently in Year 11 at Brentwood Secondary College. My interests include writing and traveling around meeting different people. At Global Table I would like to talk about the impact of palm oil on the environment. It is the most commonly produced vegetable oil and a source of huge profits for corporations and the market, but at the same time it’s destroying animal habitats, displacing indigenous peoples and increasing deforestation. What can we do to improve the situation and avoid buying products made with palm oil?
Chief Scientific Officer and Co-founder, Shiok Meats
Shiok Meats is a cell-based crustacean meat company, the first of its kind in the world and the first cell-based company in Singapore and South-east Asia. Shiok means enjoyable and fantastic in Singaporean English. Shiok Meats is led by Dr Sandhya Sriram (CEO) and Dr Ka Yi Ling (Chief Scientific Officer), who are both stem cell and developmental biology scientists with over 20 years’ combined experience.
Dr Ka Yi received the prestigious A*STAR National Science Scholarship and graduated with a Bachelors degree and PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has worked closely with stem cell and developmental biology experts like James Thomson, Davor Solter and Barbara Knowles. Following graduation, Dr Ka Yi did her postdoc at Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology in Singapore. She is an active science communicator and frequently takes part in science outreach as well as speaking at food sustainability and career management events. She has appeared on podcasts with her fellow colleagues and scholars.
Dr Ka Yi is passionate about marrying her experience in biotech research and her love for food to produce sustainable food products, which led her to co-found Shiok Meats in August 2018.
Founder and CEO, Soulfresh Global
In 2003, Didi Lo had a vision to bring the natural and organic foods made in the Byron Bay area to a wider audience. This was a time when swapping traditional soft drinks for kombucha was a hard sell. Regardless, Lo set off for Melbourne with nothing but a refrigerated van, a map and a pallet of his favourite Byron Bay products.
Soulfresh has since expanded from one man in a van to a leading Australian food and beverage company offering people healthier options. Along the way, he’s launched and grown many brands, from kombucha and plant-based milks to kefir and vegan chocolate. Lo is currently working on the launch of Eaty, a plant-based meat range, which looks, tastes and sizzles exactly like meat. Soulfresh today operates in Australia, New Zealand, the UK and Europe, with more regions in sight.
General Manager, Mars Wrigley Australia
Andrew Loader is the General Manager of Mars Wrigley Australia, a business he recently led through the merger of Mars Chocolate and Wrigley Pacific. Today he leads a team of over 800 Associates, working together to bring 18 iconic brands to market, including M&M’s®, SNICKERS, EXTRA® and SKITTLES®.
Since starting his career as a chartered accountant, Loader has held a number of senior executive roles around the world during his 18-year career with Mars. He is an experienced member of both market and regional leadership teams, and previously held roles as the General Manager of Mars Chocolate Australia, and as the Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer for Mars Chocolate in Asia Pacific, Middle East and North Africa. He is passionate about talent development and building a diverse workplace that enables great people leaders to deliver results.
While he was still a teenager studying Engineering, Darren Lomman created Dreamfit Foundation, designing and building custom equipment for people with disabilities. Dreamfit went on to make dreams possible for countless people, and benefited over 10,000 individuals and families across Australia. For his dedication, he was named WA Young Australian of the year, Australia Community Leader of the Year and was a 2007 winner of 40 under 40, among other awards.
Following Dreamfit’s success, Lomman went looking for his next project. This time, it’s addressing the shocking fact that no plastic collected in Western Australian recycling bins has ever been processed in WA. His new social enterprise, Greenbatch, is WA’s first waste plastic reprocessing facility. With big goals to help solve this issue Australia-wide, Lomman and Greenbatch are ones to watch.
Industry Partnership Manager, Monash University
Lucia develops multi-disciplinary strategic partnership opportunities across Monash University to grow new and emerging market sectors. In her role as an Industry Partnership Manager, Lucia’s focus lies in agtech, energy and sustainable communities. She has led the development of the AgTech LaunchPad with Bosch and works closely with its academic directors to support the growth of research translation. Prior to joining the Industry Partnerships team, Lucia has worked in the energy, property and social enterprise sectors, focusing on partnership development and strategy. Lucia is also a Monash alumnus, having completed a double degree in Arts and Mechanical Engineering, before returning to complete the Master of Sustainability.
Group General Manager - Marketing and Innovation, Detmold Group
Tom Lunn is responsible for developing the Detmold Group brands and leading product innovation and industry partnerships to create customer value. Regularly working with brands like McDonalds in the US, Starbucks in China, Jollibee in the Philippines, Warner Brothers in the Middle East and KFC in Australia keeps Lunn at the forefront of global packaging and foodservice trends. He is focused on sustainability in packaging and is the driving force behind Recycle Me™, Australia’s first commercially recyclable takeaway coffee cup. He is proud to have helped customers reduce the environmental footprint of hundreds of products, saving thousands of tonnes of raw materials and diverting millions of used items from landfill every year.
Director Agrifood and Wine, University of Adelaide
Professor Andy Lowe is a British-Australian scientist and expert in plants and trees, particularly the management and of genetic, biological and ecosystem resources. He has discovered lost forests, championed to eliminate illegally logged timber in global supply chains, served the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and is a lead author of the Intergovernmental Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services.
Professor Lowe has helped secure one-quarter of a billion dollars in research funding in his field and is an experienced and respected executive leader, board member and mid-career mentor. Professor Lowe is inaugural Director of Agrifood and Wine at the University of Adelaide, representing the institution in the food industry and government sector partnerships around Australia and the world. The University of Adelaide has an eminent 130-year history of research and teaching in food, wine and agriculture.
Lowe has been the Scientist in Residence at The Australian Financial Review since August 2018.
Darryl Lyons is a co-founder of Escavox, a company built to “give a voice to perishable products” in the retail food supply chains to support better decision-making, supply chain efficiency and waste reduction. Lyons hails from a cattle-farming family and has spent many years working on the deployment of large communications networks across Northern Australia, which gives him a unique set of insights and skills.
He has first-hand experience of the challenges that farmers face in optimising their production and supply chain systems in an industry that is increasingly competitive. The increased focus on efficiency improvements and demand for greater transparency only add to this challenge.
CEO, Food System 6 | General Partner, 1st Course Capital
Renske Lynde has worked in the non-profit sector on food, agriculture and nutrition policy and issues for more than 20 years and is an active investor, philanthropist and advocate for a healthy and resilient food system. She currently holds positions at early-stage venture capital firm, 1st Course Capita, and non-profit accelerator Food System 6.
Lynde began her career in Minnesota, USA at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, advocating in global trade arenas on behalf of smallholder farmers and sustainable producers. She then went on to build direct markets for Pennsylvania farmers as part of a national market-building effort called Buy Fresh, Buy Local. Lynde subsequently directed advocacy, policy and research for the San Francisco Food Bank, working on improvements to the United States’ federal food stamp and school lunch programs.
Lynde holds a Bachelor of Political Science and Psychology from Boston University and a Master of Public Policy from UC Berkeley.
I’m Wangshu Ma and I am a student from Mentone Girls’ Grammar School. I love playing tennis and my favourite subject at school is biology. I have two little siblings, who are always pestering me to play with them. I’m a super enthusiastic person who is always looking for opportunities for learning and growth. My vices are the Australian series of Survivor and ice-cream, my two favourite things in the world. I’m very interested about the effect of GMOs on our diets in the future.
Vice President and General Manager Australia, TerViva Bioenergy
Margaret Mackenzie is a veteran partnership builder who is adept at leveraging technology to advance real world solutions. She is deeply interested in the hands-on work of growing TerViva’s multi-national business to combat systemic challenges including rising food insecurity, land scarcity and the threat climate change poses to our ability to feed and fuel the planet.
Mackenzie is an entrepreneur and former banker who has served in the C-Suite of several venture-backed financial technology startups and as co-founder of the multi-continent mobile payments company Paymo, now part of Boku, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange. She currently serves as a Global Advisory Board member of Astia, a non-profit dedicated to leveling the playing field for women entrepreneurs by providing access, community and capital.
She earned her Masters of Business Administration in Finance and International Business from the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago, and a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from the University of California at Davis. Mackenzie is a life-long painter and in her spare time enjoys the opportunity to take in the orchards, cities and sweeping landscapes of Australia.
Oli Madgett has a family vineyard in the McLaren Vale wine region and is the Co-founder of AgTech start-up Platfarm. Additionally, Madgett runs Adelaide AgTech Meetups, is a member of the AgriFutures Ignite Panel and has extensive history in the digital and IT space in South Australia and overseas. He is also an agtech mentor and has used his vineyard for tech trials, including with The University of Adelaide.
Executive General Manager, CHEP Australia
Lis Mannes is a highly experienced executive with an international career that has spanned both the fast-moving consumer and industrial goods industries. She has extensive international and domestic supply chain experience including management of the largest bakery supply chain network in Australia. She is currently the Executive General Manager of CHEP Australia Limited, which is a subsidiary of Brambles Limited, a global pioneer of the circular and sharing economy.
From its origins here in Australia in 1946, CHEP has played a crucial role as a global supply chain solutions partner, allowing retailers, manufacturers and transporters to move and handle goods both cost-effectively and sustainably. Brambles holds the world’s largest pool of reusable pallets and containers and is a leader in some of the most recognised sustainability investor ratings, including Dow Jones Sustainability Index, MSCI, Sustainalytics and CDP.
Farmer and author, Severn Park
Writer, farmer and researcher Charles Massy is one of Australia’s leading proponents of agricultural innovation. With 40-plus years of experience managing a prominent merino stud business, Massy has chaired and served as a director on a number of national and international review panels and boards of business, research organisations and statutory wool bodies, where he has advised on garment manufacture, wool marketing, research and development, molecular genetics and genomics. Massy’s concern about land degradation led to him completing a PhD in Human Ecology in 2012 through the Australian National University.
Since 1977, Massy has published as a freelance journalist on subjects including mountaineering, history, ecology and the environment. His first three books concerned the history of the Australian merino and wool industries. His book Breaking the Sheep’s Back (2011) was shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Award for Australian History in 2012.
Chief Financial Officer, Licella Holdings
Simon Mathewson has over 20 years’ experience in the banking and financial services industry, including asset management, superannuation, wealth management and capital markets. He has extensive leadership experience on strategic projects and innovation. Prior to joining Licella Holdings in early 2019, Mathewson held various senior leadership positions across Westpac, Macquarie Bank and JP Morgan. He brings to Licella Holdings valuable expertise in transitioning entrepreneurial startups to their commercialisation phase through his work as a business consultant.
Nutrition Scientist, La Trobe University
McMillan is a Scottish-born Australian and one of the country’s favourite and most trusted health and nutrition experts. She is a PhD qualified nutrition scientist, Accredited Practising Dietitian, Adjunct Senior Research Fellow with La Trobe University and Fellow of the Australasian Society of Lifestyle Medicine. Joanna is an experienced TV presenter. She has worked on The Today Show for 15 years, been a host for ABC’s science show Catalyst, and is a regular on radio and in print media. She is a TEDx and international keynote speaker and MC, and is the founder of Get Lean, an online lifestyle change program. She has authored seven books including Get Lean Stay Lean and her latest Brain Food.
Global Food Innovation Director, Nestlé
As Nestlé’s Global Innovation Director, Gerardo Mazzeo has been at the forefront of the company’s global innovation activities since 2012, including leading the HENRi@Nestlé open innovation initiative and being responsible for the Digital Acceleration Team (DAT) based at Nestlé HQ. HENRi@Nestlé brings together the world’s largest food and beverage company with innovators and startups to work on cutting-edge projects in product innovation, sustainability, creative brand campaigns and more. Mazzeo has worked at the company for more than 20 years in commercial and marketing roles and has a first-hand understanding of how corporations and startups can complement one another for positive outcomes.
Indigenous Business Development Manager, Coles
Topaz McAuliffe has been working in Indigenous affairs for 10 years, beginning with Indigenous employment where she successfully created and implemented a sustainable employment model at Coles. Coles is now Australia’s largest private-sector employer of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, employing in excess of 4,000 team members.
McAuliffe’s Torres Strait Islander heritage has always driven her passion for all things food, which has shaped the next stage of her career. She is now guiding Coles’ strategy to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander farmers to increase commercial opportunities for supplying fresh produce and native bush food. Coles is the largest seller of native bush foods and is committed to growing its Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander supply chain.
CEO and Executive Chairman, Boundary Bend Olives
Rob McGavin is the Co-founder, CEO and Executive Chairman of Boundary Bend Limited, Australia’s largest vertically integrated olive company that specialises in the production of extra virgin olive oil. Boundary Bend Limited owns the Cobram Estate and Red Island brands.
McGavin has extensive experience in the agribusiness sector. He is directly involved in a large-scale vineyard in South Australia, a grazing operation in Western Queensland and a cropping and grazing operation in south-western Victoria, as well as Boundary Bend’s development and management. He is also a board member of Marcus Oldham Agricultural College.
General Manager Innovation, Food Innovation Australia
Barry is an innovation manager with 30yrs in food manufacturing. He has held senior technical, innovation and commercial leadership roles in large FMCG organisations
With product launches in domestic retail, export, foodservice and QSR, one of Barry’s great joys is working with many innovative small companies across Australia
Barry is a member of national advisory boards for supply chain improvement, fruit and vegetable value addition and dairy innovation
Currently General Manager Innovation, Capabilities and Skills with Food Innovation Australia, as a passionate connector, for the last 5 yrs Barry has been leading initiatives across the whole Australian Agri-Food business value chain to strengthen innovation, build company capabilities and connect businesses to solutions that deliver sustainability and market opportunities
CEO, Food Ladder
Kelly McJannett is experienced in the development of high-impact startups that create wide-reaching, sustainable impact and change. Food Ladder is a not-for-profit organisation addressing food security and the widespread incidence of malnutrition in remote and disadvantaged communities around the world. As the CEO, she has driven the organisation’s growth throughout Indigenous communities in Australia and its international replication across some of the most challenging communities on earth. Utilising environmentally sustainable technologies, Food Ladder provides communities with access to fresh, nutrient-rich produce while simultaneously creating social enterprises that deliver economic, health, education and employment outcomes.
With a background in communications and public relations, McJannett holds a Bachelor’s degree from UTS and is currently completing her Master of Business Administration at Sydney University Business School, where she holds a full scholarship for her leading work in social enterprise development. She is passionate about creating sustainable solutions for pervasive social issues affecting communities around the world and galvanising the power and passion of organisations, individuals and governments to do this.
General Manager - Marketing Asia, Bright Food Asia
Matthew McKenzie has led the market development in China for a number of iconic Australian and international food and beverage brands over the past 20 years. He moved to China in early 2015 and led the development of The Export Group, an in-market business development and sales organisation. He now resides in Hong Kong and works as the General Manager of Marketing for Bright Food Asia, which has one of the largest distribution networks across Greater China. Bright Food Asia owns and operates a number of import, distribution, manufacturing and marketing organisations across China, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong SAR and Macau.
Principal, McKinna et al
Dr David McKinna is principal of boutique strategy consultancy McKinna et al. In more than 30 years of consulting, Dr McKinna has worked across virtually every agrifood sector, from commodities to groceries, spanning `paddock to plate’. He has been the quiet achiever behind groundbreaking industry strategies including the livestock reporting service, Meat Standards Australia, Big M, Rev and Skinny branded milk and Woolworths, The Fresh Food People strategy.
Dr McKinna has advised the boards of many well-known Australian agrifood companies such as Elders, Select Harvests, Tassal and Incitec Pivot. He has also served as a director of Simplot Australia. His global credentials have been earned through developing export strategies for seafood, meat, dairy, horticulture and packaged foods, including playing a leading role in the development of the highly successful Aussie Beef strategy in Japan and South Korea.
Business Development Manager, Austrade Thailand
Chantimaporn Mekdhanasarn has been with Austrade Bangkok since 1992. She has 27 years’ experience working in various sectors such as medical and health, information technology and telecoms services, and has spent the last five years as the leader of Austrade’s food and agribusiness team. Her knowledge of local industry is substantial and she is well connected with the food and agribusiness sector of Thailand. Prior to joining Austrade, Mekdhanasarn was a Brand Manager at Unilever Thailand and had spent two years on secondment to the Unilever Research Centre at Port Sunlight, UK.
She is a UK graduate, with a Bachelor of Science specialising in Nutrition and Dietetics, a Postgraduate Diploma in Business Studies from Aberdeen University and a Master of Business Administration from Aberystwyth University.
Deputy Head of Unit Asia and Australasia, Directorate General for Agriculture and Rural Development, European Commission
Lionel Mesnildrey is currently Deputy Head of the unit that deals with relations with Asia, Australia and New Zealand in the Agriculture and Rural Development Directorate-General of the European Commission. Since 2004 he has acquired experience in international affairs in the agricultural area, having previously been in charge of relations with the Near and Middle East and Latin America. He was directly involved in the negotiations between the EU and a large number of countries in these regions, in particular with respect to market access and geographical indications. Previously, he worked on the EU plant health legislation, first as an auditor in the then Food and Veterinary office in Dublin and then in the European Commission headquarters in Brussels. Before joining the European Commission in 1997, Mesnildrey was employed in a private company dealing with agri-input business based in the French West Indies.
Victorian Ambassador, Husk Distillers
Edwina Messenger has been involved in Husk Distillers, Australia’s only agricole rum distillery, since before her family started the company in New South Wales in 2012. She has worked at the distillery in many areas including production (both in-distillery and harvesting), dispatch and export, marketing, customer relations and now as an ambassador for the distillery in Melbourne. She is proud to be part of a burgeoning Australian industry and looks forward to representing the North Coast region of New South Wales to the rest of Australia and the world.
Assistant Director, Department of Agriculture
Nick Micalos is a career public servant with close to ten years experience at the Department of Agriculture. Micalos currently works in the South East Asia section of the Department’s Trade and Market Access Division. Micalos holds a degree in Commerce from the Australian National University, majoring in Management and Corporate Sustainability.
Applications and Solutions Manager, Airbus
Seyed Miri is specialised in remote sensing and GIS and has worked in the geospatial and earth observation (EO) sector over the past 18 years in New Zealand and Australia. He has held remote sensing/GIS lead positions in various companies, joining Airbus in 2013. He is currently based in Melbourne and managing business development activities in various territories in Australia and New Zealand. As an Applications and Solutions Manager his key interests are developing and adopting new solutions and services for Airbus Intelligence business in the ANZ region using Airbus EO systems.
Founder, Climate Wise Agriculture
Anika Molesworth is a young farmer and a PhD candidate in agro-ecology. Spending time on her family’s sheep farm near Broken Hill, NSW, it was the knowledge that droughts and dust storms are to become more severe with climate change that set her on her career in science communication and advocating for sustainable futures.
Molesworth’s career has taken her around the world. She has conducted research for the past five years in South East Asia, meeting royalty and global leaders, and talking on stages like TEDx in front of thousands of people. She works on amplifying the voices of the next generation of food and fibre producers. Her accolades include 2015 Young Farmer of the Year, 2017 NSW Finalist for Young Australian of the Year, and, most recently, the Green Globe Young Sustainability Champion Award.
Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner, Austrade Taiwan
Brent Moore is a Trade Commissioner based in Shanghai with more than 15 years’ experience in public- and private-sector international trade.
Moore was posted to Shanghai in February 2014, where he has led Austrade’s food, beverage, e-commerce and consumer team in Shanghai. He leads trade missions to China and advises Australian companies on market entry strategy, including the publication of e-commerce in China, a Guide for Australian Business and Exporting Food and Beverage to China, a Guide for Australian Business.
Prior to coming to Shanghai, Moore spent two years as the Executive Officer for East Asian Growth Markets in Austrade’s Sydney headquarters. Moore previously worked in the office of the federal agriculture minister and as a policy officer in the Department of Agriculture covering multilateral and trade negotiation, including the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement and the WTO Sanitary and Phytosanitary Committee. Moore has also worked in private consulting on trade sustainability impacts in Latin America on behalf of the European Commission.
Moore comes from Bright in north-east Victoria and has lived across Asia for more than nine years. He’ll commence his next assignment, as Senior Trade Commissioner to Taipei, from December 2019.
Chef & Restaurateur
With over 30 stellar years in the food industry behind him, a plethora of awards to his name, a handful of best-selling cookbooks under his belt, and the tour de force behind some of Australia’s most celebrated dining establishments; it’s safe to say that Moran is an Australian food icon.
Moran is a chef and restaurateur and at the heart of every one of his endeavours lies a passion for fresh, seasonal produce. Matt is a pioneer in Australia of the ‘paddock to plate’ philosophy and a firm believer in the importance of consumers being connected to the source of their food. This seed was planted early for Matt, who spent his childhood on a farm, where a commitment to the land, love of food and seasonal, local produce were instilled in him.
I have been heavily involved in agriculture for many years now, having assisted at my grandparents beef stud since I was young. I’ve also had the privilege to be a Stud Master for my school’s successful Corriedale sheep stud, where we have bred and cared for national champion sheep while also teaching budding agriculturalists to do the same.
I have also been successful in junior judging and showmanship competitions at state and national levels, and was part of the National Champion Secondary team and this year’s Australian Wool Innovations’ National Merino Challenge. Being middle and senior school environmental prefect has allowed my passion for the environment and sustainability to evolve thanks to the many opportunities I was granted, including attending and presenting at the Melbourne Water conference several times.
Partner, CSIRO Main Sequence Ventures
Morle founded the first technology incubator in Australia, Pollenizer and is a partner at the CSIRO’s venture capital fund, Main Sequence Ventures and a Director of the Food Agility CRC. He is actively investing in technologies that will help the world feed 10 billion people in the decades to come.
Senior Advisor, Austrade
Chris Morley is a Senior Advisor in the agribusiness and food team with Austrade, overseeing the packaged food and beverage sectors. He is passionate about growing Australian brands overseas, ensuring that through e-commerce and other emerging technologies shaping the retail environment that Australian brands are at the forefront of consumer choice.
Morley spent over three years in China selling Australian-made food and wine to consumers and businesses using online and traditional methods of engagement. At all times when working with clients, Morley is able to assist with their growth by linking their offering to consumer needs and highlighting their product features in the most meaningful manner.
A leader in social enterprise, Jim Mullan has been CEO of food waste charity SecondBite since 2016. SecondBite redistributes surplus fresh food to over 1,300 community agencies around Australia, taking donations from supermarkets, farmers, wholesalers and markets to feed people in need.
Mullan has also been CEO of the United Kingdom edition of The Big Issue, the world’s most widely circulated street newspaper, and Founding General Manager of KibbleWorks, a Scottish social enterprise that provides care and education to young people in need. He has lectured in social enterprise, entrepreneurship and corporate governance, and provided specialist contributions on the economic impact of social enterprise for both the Scottish and UK Governments. Mullan was awarded a distinguished talent visa by the Australian Government in recognition of his work internationally in the field of social enterprise.
Vice-President - South-East Asia and ANZ, VEChain Technology
Sarah Nabaa joined VeChain as a Partner and Vice-President of South-East Asia and Australia-New Zealand. She is primarily responsible for business development of Australasian markets, as well as identifying key technology partners in the field of supply chain, anti-counterfeiting, IoT and agritechnology.
Prior to joining VeChain in 2017, Nabaa’s background was in business development. She brings entrepreneurial resilience to the team from her experience of bootstrapping and selling her e-commerce business, before becoming a consultant, where she advised startups and SMEs on their digital strategies and transformation. Nabaa graduated from Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University with a bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering.
Director, Food & Nutrition Australia
Sharon Natoli is founding director of Food & Nutrition Australia, a speaker and an author with 25 years of experience in assisting businesses to adapt to consumer needs. She is passionate about food businesses leading change across the food system in a way that improves the future health of people and the planet. Food & Nutrition Australia provides strategic research, and regulatory and nutrition advisory services to businesses and organisations in the food sector, assisting them to expand their share of voice in the market, grow sales and shareholder return, and re-build consumer trust and loyalty.
Natoli is author of Food for a Better Future, writes a regular blog called Perspectives on the Future of Food, and speaks at conferences and events about what food businesses can do to prepare for a healthier and more sustainable future.
I am a 16-year-old student at the Australian Islamic College of Sydney. My hobbies include reading, writing stories, sports, music, exploring new places and more. I have received an academic effort achievement and I love to learn new things and think outside the box. I strive to find solutions to problems.
Despite the problems climate change is causing, there are even more problems trying to solve it, one of the main ones being politics. Research shows that we have the potential to live 100% on renewable energy but lack the political action to do so. This is due to many reasons, most common being that it’s expensive and that many don’t ‘believe’ climate change exists and promote fossil fuels.
Founder, Food Tank
Danielle Nierenberg is a world-renowned researcher, speaker and advocate on all issues relating to our food system and agriculture. In 2013, she co-founded non-profit organisation Food Tank with Bernard Pollack to offer solutions and environmentally sustainable ways of alleviating hunger, obesity, and poverty. Food Tank’s Summits are sell-out events across the United States, with plans to expand internationally. The Summits have hosted hundreds of speakers and attracted audiences of thousands, bringing together all sides for critical discussions of food issues.
Nierenberg has a Master of Science in Agriculture, Food, and Environment from the Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy and spent two years volunteering for the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic. She conducts on-the-ground research, documenting what’s working to help alleviate hunger and poverty while protecting the environment, travelling to more than 70 countries across sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America. Her knowledge of global agriculture issues has been cited widely in more than 20,000 major print and broadcast outlets worldwide.
Founder and Chief Commercial Officer, Vow
Tim Noakesmith is a serial entrepreneur, design professional, educator and the co-founder of Vow, a future-focused food company that uses the latest biotechnology to create new foods by using animal cells but not the animal. Vow’s philosophy is that it’s possible to achieve a new benchmark for flavour, texture and nutrition in meat-free protein products, without having to shoulder the compromises of current food production systems.
Before launching Vow, Noakesmith was most recently the global Human Centred Design Lead for Cochlear, where he was responsible for ensuring the needs of Cochlear implant recipients were at the core of the organisation’s strategy, all while working within regulatory medical-tech frameworks. He has held a number of senior roles in user experience design, service design and product strategy spanning a diverse range of industries and technologies, including Blockchain payments, national communications infrastructure and some of the world’s most recognisable FMCG brands.
Creative Director, Food + Wine Victoria
Pat Nourse is the Creative Director of Food + Wine Victoria. A restaurant critic and travel writer with some 20 years’ experience, he was an editor at Gourmet Traveller for 14 years, has reviewed and written for many Australian publications, and his work has been published internationally in the likes of Saveur, Travel + Leisure, Fool, Afar, Lucky Peach, 12forward, Condé Nast’s Gourmet, and Qantas, Etihad, Cathay Pacific and Virgin in-flight magazines.
Nourse serves on Tourism Australia’s Food and Wine Advisory Panel, has chaired voting for Australia/Oceania for the World’s 50 Best Restaurants since 2006, is a curator of the forthcoming 2019 Phaidon release Signature Dishes That Matter, and shares his eating and travel adventures on Instagram as @patnourse.
Aquaculture Research Scientist, Northern Territory Government, Department of Primary Industry and Resources
Dr Samantha Nowland is an Aquaculture Research Scientist for the Northern Territory Government, Department of Primary Industry and Resources. She works at the Darwin Aquaculture Centre to develop tropical black-lip rock oyster aquaculture, supporting Aboriginal economic development in remote NT communities. This work was recently showcased on ABC’s Landline, as project success enabled community farms to expand from trials to small-scale commercial ventures for this new aquaculture species.
Dr Nowland’s research interests include tropical aquaculture, women’s leadership in the seafood industry, sustainable development of fisheries and aquaculture, and community empowerment through economic development. Dr Nowland is a Territorian and passionate about Australian seafood and the ocean. She regularly volunteers for local groups including Aus Turtle, Keep Top End Coasts Healthy and Researchers in Agriculture for International Development, and is a committee member for the Australian Marine Sciences Association NT Branch. She recently won the 2019 NT Seafood Industry Young Achiever Award.
Dr Nowland holds a PhD in Aquaculture from the University of the Sunshine Coast and a Bachelor of Science (Honours), majoring in Marine Biology and Aquaculture, from James Cook University.
Marc Noyce is the Chief Executive Officer of Biofilta, a Melbourne company specialising in stormwater harvesting, water-sensitive urban design and urban farming. In line with Biofilta’s mission to “turn our cities into catchments and food bowls”, Noyce is an active proponent of combining hydraulic and engineering skills to solve sustainability challenges in our cities.
Since joining Biofilta, Noyce has overseen the research and development of urban food technology and has brought urban food growing products to commercialisation that are changing the face of sustainability.
Noyce has worked in the water industry for the past 20 years at both the local and state government level, designing some of Melbourne’s largest urban wetland systems with professional engineering company Cardno and working on stormwater policy and natural resource management at the Department of Sustainability and Environment.
Noyce is responsible for business development at Biofilta and is also a co-director of the Melbourne Skyfarm, a project that will establish an urban farm on the roof of a multi-storey carpark in the centre of Melbourne.
Director – Precision Health, CSIRO
O’Callaghan is leading CSIRO’s Precision Health Future Science Platform. Since obtaining his PhD in Medical Science from the John Curtin School of Medical Research at ANU in 2007 O’Callaghan has developed broad experience in nutrition and health science. A keen focus throughout has been in developing cutting edge and robust molecular-based assays for assessing (metabolic) health and dietary exposure to better target and personalise delivery of health advice. Since 2012, O’Callaghan has held various senior R&D Management Roles within CSIRO. This broad portfolio experience included oversight of the Nutrition and Health Research Clinic, which undertakes industry-funded clinical substantiation trials to demonstrate the health effects of foods, diets and lifestyle programs. Nathan is an active member of various Scientific Advisory Boards and recently returned from a 6-month industry based sabbatical at Nestle, Switzerland.
Director - Precision Health, CSIRO
Nathan O’Callaghan is leading CSIRO’s Precision Health Future Science Platform. Since obtaining his PhD in Medical Science from the John Curtin School of Medical Research at Australian National University in 2007, O’Callaghan has developed broad experience in nutrition and health science. A keen focus throughout has been in developing cutting edge and robust molecular based assays for assessing (metabolic) health and dietary exposure to better target and personalise delivery of health advice.
Since 2012, O’Callagan has held various senior R&D management roles within CSIRO. This broad portfolio experience included oversight of the Nutrition and Health Research Clinic, which undertakes industry-funded clinical substantiation trials to demonstrate the health effects of foods, diets and lifestyle programs. He is an active member of various scientific advisory boards and recently returned from a six-month industry-based sabbatical at Nestle in Switzerland.
Buying Director, Planet Organic
Al Overton qualified as a medical herbalist in 1999 and has been involved in natural health retail ever since. During 18 years at Planet Organic, he has done every job imaginable and is now Buying Director, managing the company’s buying, marketing, brand and e-commerce functions. Planet Organic is a speciality health food store with eight shops in London.
Founder & Chief Advisor, Fulcrum Strategic Advisors
Pabon has spent the past 15 years championing sustainable development and stakeholder engagement, leading the creation of some of the private sector’s most forward-thinking strategic sustainability approaches. Most recently, he founded Fulcrum Strategic Advisors with a mission to get business thinking differently about how they can adapt to a changing world. He spends his days advising multinational firms on Chinese policy, strategic communications, and sustainability, deciphering ways they can take advantage of the shifting geopolitical climate. His previous work includes posts with the United Nations, McKinsey, A.C. Nielsen, and as a consultant with BSR, the world’s largest sustainability-focused business network. For nearly a decade he’s also chronicled the societal impacts of China’s economic rise in his blog, John’s Little Green Book.
Pabon has been honoured as one of the world’s top 100 voices on modern China, is a regular contributor to China-based business magazines, and speaks to an array of global audiences on issues of sustainability, communications, and societal change. He also serves on the board of advisors to the U.S. Green Chamber of Commerce and the Australian Chamber of Commerce CSR Committee.
Victorian Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events and Minister for Racing
The Hon Martin Pakula MP is the Victorian Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events, Minister for Racing and Member for Keysborough. Martin joined the Labor Party in 1987 while studying economics and law at Monash University. In 1993, he joined the National Union of Workers, where he served as an Industrial Officer, Assistant State Secretary, State Secretary and National Vice President.
In 2006, he was elected to the Legislative Council as the member for Western Metropolitan Region. Between 2006 and 2010, Martin held the following ministerial appointments: Parliamentary Secretary for Transport and Parliamentary Secretary for Roads and Ports. Following that he served as Minister for Industry and Trade, Minister for Industrial Relations and Minister for Public Transport. In Opposition, Martin was the Shadow Attorney-General, Shadow Minister for Gaming and Racing, Shadow Minister for Corrections and Opposition Scrutiny of Government spokesperson.
In 2013, Martin moved to the Legislative Assembly in a by-election for the seat of Lyndhurst, which was subsequently renamed Keysborough. In the Andrews’ Government’s first term, Martin held the position of Attorney-General and Minister for Racing. A keen football and racing fan, Martin has been a member of the Carlton Football Club for more than 40 years and is a member of the Victoria Racing Club. His other passions include music and running. Martin is married with two children.
Sustainability Manager, Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation
Having commenced her career delivering analytical market research tools and services to the consumer packaged goods industry globally, Jayne has worked with some of the world’s largest retailers and manufacturers on everything from new product development to category management, loyalty programs to shopper insights, through to strategic store design. Jayne developed a deep understanding of the packaged goods sector and the challenges presented by a shifting shopper landscape.
After a series of remarkable coincidences that resulted in a ‘summer job’ working in the Antarctic, Jayne made the professional leap to environmental sustainability. Her recent focus has been plastic waste and pollution and the emerging impacts on the environment. Jayne’s combined FMCG and sustainability experience comes together to support APCO’s work of delivering on the 2025 National Packaging Targets.
Vice President -Victoria, Australia China Business Council
Parker is a China specialist with a focus on collaboration between Australia and China to broaden the bilateral relationship. A Mandarin speaker, Parker’s long-term engagement with China has resulted in impressive networks and successful business outcomes. He has held China-focused roles in The Asialink Centre, Austrade (Beijing), City of Melbourne and as writer and reporter for the ABC in both China and Australia for Radio National’s Asia Pacific Program. In 2007, Parker established Red Tape Consulting a China Advisory business that helped stage the first AFL exhibition math as part of the Shanghai World Expo and delivered intercultural training programs as well as conducted trade missions on behalf of the Victorian and NSW governments.
In 2015, Bastion acquired Red Tape and Parker established Bastion China, as one of Australia’s leading Chinese language marketing and communications business with clients including Tennis Australia, Mirvac, Australian Grand Prix, and Virgin Australia. In late 2018, he joined the AFL in a newly created role as Head of China to drive commercial outcomes from the ongoing engagement and games being played in Shanghai. Parker incorporates a life-long passion for China into his professional life having studied Chinese (Mandarin) since 1987 and is a well-connected Australia-China facilitator with extensive experience assisting business and government better understand and access their opportunities in China.
Professor of Dietetics & Human Nutrition
Patch is a nutrition innovator with over 20 years experience dedicated to improving nutrition, health and wellness. He is currently Professor of Dietetics & Human Nutrition at La Trobe University, Co-founder of Vernx (a biotech start-up), Co-founder of Feedback Nutrition (a social enterprise) and Director of Limos Therapeutics (a pharmaceutical spin-out). Previously Patch led the commercial strategy for Clover Corporation resulting in the launch of many novel nutritional ingredients sold globally. His research interests are in the area of omega-3 fatty acids and branched chain fatty acids in improving infant and preterm infant health outcomes. He is co-inventor of 6 patent applications, has published over 70 peer-reviewed articles and has a Bachelor of Applied Science, is qualified dietitian, has a MBA and a PhD in biomedical science.
Founder and CEO, My Co
Terry Paule is the Co-Founder and Chairman of Findex, Founder and CEO of My Co (makers of My Life Biocheese), Executive Chairman of Aqua Botanical Beverages, Executive Chairman of Botanical Water Technologies, Executive Director and Chairman of Clever Health, a SproutX mentor and, famously, Co-founder and former Managing Director of Lemnos Foods.
Paule has amassed over 35 years of experience as a serial entrepreneur with a hands-on approach to building startups and their brands both in Australia and internationally. He has an impressive track record of having founded and funded several successful business ventures. Paule believes in establishing strong operational frameworks and a positive cultural environment to support and manage the implementation process essential for success.
He most recently established My Co to focus on new idea and startup opportunities in the health and wellbeing, and global food and beverage sector with a particular emphasis on renewable and sustainable ideas. Driving some of Australia’s most exciting and revolutionary startups, he mentors many aspiring entrepreneurs through strategic guidance and public speaking, and dedicates time and resources to philanthropy. He is an inspiring leader with a wealth of knowledge and experience, and a contagious passion for life.
Cooperation Policies and Peacekeeping, Hesalis
Emilio Petrucci has more than 15 years of experience in the social development area, youth local policies, European projects and entrepreneurship training. He graduated with a degree in political science, specialising in international peacekeeping and cooperation policies. He is a green and regeneration activist for several associations in the European Union and Colombia. Since 2015, Hesalis has been researching how cannabis can act as a phytoremediant for polluted areas.
Founder & CEO, Food Futures Company
Dr Christine Pitt is a globally recognised thought-leader, investor and successful entrepreneur in the agtech and food tech ecosystem. For the past 20 years she has worked extensively across the agri-food value chain in Australia and Asia and, most recently, was the CEO of an ag and food tech investment portfolio worth more than $200 million.
As founder of the Food Futures Company, she works globally with researchers, corporates, startups and investors to accelerate the development of cutting edge agrifood technologies, products and business models. She is also the co-founder of Farmers2Founders which focuses on developing the capabilities of producers to enable them to launch and/or engage in new agtech and foodtech ventures. Her most recent venture is the establishment of the GROW agrifood tech accelerator in Singapore, a joint venture with AgFunder.
Marketing and Communications Manager, Licella and IQ Renew
Since 2015 Andrea Polson has been Marketing and Communications Manager at Licella, the global leaders in hydrothermal upgrading, the process of chemically converting low-value wastes and residues into higher-value products. Alongside this, Polson provides support to Licella’s business development team. She is also Marketing and Communications Manager at iQ Renew, Australian commercial partner for the Cat-HTR platform and the first company in Australia to combine physical and chemical recycling.
Prior to joining Licella, Polson worked in a variety of sales, marketing and communication roles within the pharmaceutical and resources sectors. When she’s not running around after her two young children, she is also Marketing and Communications Consultant for Gelion Technologies, an Australian energy storage battery company. Polson is passionate about supporting Australian technological innovation and hopes to inspire others to do the same.
Executive Director, Global Compact Network Australia
Kylie Porter is a sustainability expert with over 15 years of experience in corporate affairs, sustainability and strategy roles across a range of industries, including the financial services sector in Australia, the UK and Singapore. Porter’s expertise is in responsible business and corporate responsibility practices and strategies, as well as managing reputation risk associated with environmental, social and governance issues. She also has experience in developing and implementing policies across thematic areas such as climate change, human rights, child rights and industries such as mining and metals, oil and gas, and forestry.
Kylie holds a Bachelor of Business, a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Social Science majoring in International Development.
Managing Director, Tetra Pak Oceania
Andrew Pooch is Managing Director for Tetra Pak Oceania and sits on the senior leadership team of the company’s business in the Asia-Pacific region. Tetra Pak is the world’s leading food processing and packaging solutions company working closely with millions of customers and suppliers in more than 160 countries to provide safe food. In his role, Pooch is responsible for the refinement and implementation of the company’s strategy in Australia and New Zealand focusing on the dairy, beverage and food categories. He is also responsible for all aspects of packaging, processing and services within the business.
Pooch has more than 30 years’ experience in the packaging industry, spanning the region in markets such as China and South-East Asia, in addition to Australia and New Zealand. He also has significant experience in sustainability, whether in terms of product development, the assessment of recycling solutions and driving community awareness of post-consumer waste, in partnership with NGOs.
Managing Director - APAC, Winnow
Maxime Pourrat is an experienced entrepreneur with more than 14 years’ experience in the Asia- Pacific region working in hospitality and private equity. He also co-founded two startups in China, before going on to work Caterpillar implementing global projects.
Pourrat joined Winnow as part of the founding team to help the hospitality sector cut food waste using technology. Since its launch five years ago, Winnow has been deployed in 40 countries and has saved its customers $30 million by reducing food waste. Pourrat has grown the Asia-Pacific business to four offices in 12 countries in less than four years, working with companies such as Accor Hotels, Ikea and IHG. His love for food started while working in kitchens as a high school and university student. He holds a Bachelor of Hospitality Management from the Ecole Hôtelière de Genève.
Stevan Premutico is one of Australia’s leading tech entrepreneurs. In 2007, in the middle of the Global Financial Crisis, he conceptualised Dimmi on the back of a napkin and went on to revolutionise the Australian restaurant industry. In 2015, Dimmi was acquired by TripAdvisor.
Now, Premutico is ready to launch his next start up, me&u, which is set to change the way we order and pay in restaurants, cafes and bars. The company’s mission is centred around improving restaurant experiences and making the industry more profitable. It does this by taking care of the basics (ordering and payment) so floor staff can spend more time on service, hosting, upselling and building relationships. Over 500 restaurants around Australia have already signed on, including leading brands such as Rockpool Dining Group, Boathouse Group, Chat Thai, Watsons Bay Hotel, Sonoma and Pablo & Rusty’s, with roll-out currently underway.
Global Head of Agribusiness, KPMG New Zealand
Ian Proudfoot is considered one of the leading strategic thinkers on agribusiness in New Zealand. He presents around the world on the future of food production, processing and consumption, articulating a vision for a food system that delivers sufficient nutrition to the world in a sustainable manner. He is a strong believer that the utilisation of disruptive innovations that fuse biological, digital and physical technologies together into new models for food producers will be the best way to achieve this.
Proudfoot is the lead author of the award-winning KPMG Agribusiness Agenda publications, which are now in their tenth year. He is a member of the Te Hono Movement, a group of primary sector senior executives, and has recently been part of an advisory group working with the Minister for Primary Industries.
Founder, G J Food
Georges studied electronic engineering and worked in that field for over ten years in France before migrating to Australia in 1977. Down under, Georges started and owned three crêpes restaurants, Crêpe Connection, for nine years before moving to the import business. He managed the Import Distribution Company before founding his own company, G J FOOD The Fine Food Connection in 1991. For 28 years G J FOOD has imported and distributed fine food products from France, products that were not available on the Australian market at the time. Georges was the first to introduce into Australia many French delicacies such as fresh and frozen wild mushrooms, fresh truffles, poached goose and duck foie gras, pâtés, con-fit and cassoulet.
G J FOOD also reintroduced, especially for the 2000 Olympic games, fresh sturgeon caviar after a ban of many years, and became the exclusive agents for Grand Marnier ® gastronomic range. More recently G J FOOD started importing from France a range of cheeses selected for their special qualities. In recognition of his service to food, in 2009 he was awarded the ‘Chevalier de l’Ordre du Mérite Agricole’ by the French Government which translates to Knight of the Order of Agricultural Merit. This prestigious award is second only to the ‘Legion of Honour’ and is awarded for outstanding contribution to agriculture for the promotion and development of trade between France and Australia.
Principal Research Scientist, Agriculture Victoria and La Trobe University
Dr Jennie Pryce is a world-renowned researcher in dairy genetics and genomics and currently leads the DairyBio Animal program, which is a $15-million investment by Agriculture Victoria, Dairy Australia and the Gardiner Foundation. She also holds senior positions with La Trobe University and DataGene, the organisation responsible for dairy breeding values in Australia.
She has 116 peer-reviewed publications with significant contributions to the area of applying genomic selection to improvement of dairy cow health, fertility, feed efficiency and heat tolerance. In 2016, Dr Pryce was the first non-North American recipient of the prestigious American Dairy Science Association J.L. Lush Award in Animal Breeding and Genetics. Jennie is originally from the UK, with First Class Honours and a PhD from The University of Edinburgh.
Matthew Pryor is a partner at AgThentic, a global food and agriculture advisory firm, and co-founder of Tenacious Ventures, an agtech venture capital firm. In 2003 he co-founded Observant, an Australian agtech pioneer established to manage scarce agricultural water in drought-hardened north Western Australia using technology. Observant expanded to provide irrigation solutions for all types of farming operations throughout Australia and globally and was acquired by Jain Irrigation in February 2017. Pryor was the founding chair of Rocket Seeder, a food and agriculture innovation accelerator and is currently chair of the Australian Government Agriculture 4.0 Task Force. He is passionate about promoting Australian agrifood innovation globally.
Regional Managing Director, Canopy Growth Corporation
Ben Quirin joined the Canopy Growth family in late 2017, tasked with establishing the Asia-Pacific headquarters of the company’s international medical brand, Spectrum Therapeutics, in Victoria, Australia. From his 18 years in the technology space, Quirin brings with him a wealth of experience opening and developing emerging markets. He has been responsible for establishing new markets across Europe, Middle East and Africa, South East Asia and Australia.
Chief Operating Officer, Flurosat
James Rabey is a 30-year veteran of the tech industry, with roles in engineering, marketing and operations. As Chief Operating Officer of FluroSat, he works closely with agronomists and growers to make the latest in artificial intelligence, machine learning and remote sensing useful and usable in the field. Rabey grew up in the Central West of New South Wales; his career has taken him to the Silicon Valley, United Kingdom and Europe.
Trade and Investment Commissioner, Austrade
Stuart Rees was appointed Trade Commissioner and Counsellor (Commercial) to Thailand in July 2016 and has just returned to Australia , where he is preparing to move to India to establish a new Austrade post in Bangalore. In Thailand, his responsibilities included oversight of Austrade’s work in food and beverage, infrastructure, advanced manufacturing, resources and energy and digital sectors.
Originally from near Cavendish in Victoria, Rees joined the Australian Public Service in 2005 following a professional career in finance and agribusiness. He is a graduate of Marcus Oldham College.
Rees has extensive experience supporting exporters from Australia across a diverse range of sectors and countries, with deep experience in ASEAN.
Conor Reynolds is the Founder and Director of SnackWize, a healthy office snack delivery service that helps workplaces keep staff productive by delivering a wide range of healthy and nutritious snack boxes. Conor holds a degree in Marketing from QUT, and has over 10 years’ experience within the FMCG, travel and tourism, and health and wellbeing sectors. He is a three-time finalist for Business News Australia’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year awards, and has been featured in The Australian Financial Review, The Courier-Mail, Human Resources Director, Business News Australia, News.com.au, The Daily Telegraph, Herald Sun and on The Mentor with Mark Bouris.
Assistant Director, International Policy and Cooperation, IP Australia
Skye Reeve is an Assistant Director in the International Policy and Cooperation section at IP Australia. She has worked in policy at IP Australia since 2015 and was previously a senior trade marks examiner there.
Reeve is a qualified lawyer who worked in the private legal sector prior to commencing with IP Australia. Her work has included contributing to the development of domestic legislation across all IP rights, and currently includes policy considerations and representation for the Standing Committee on the Law of Trademarks, Industrial Designs and Geographical Indications (SCT) and the Lisbon Working Group at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). She also provides support for the China IP Counsellor, specifically in the area of trademarks, the Madrid system, designs, domain names and geographical indications.
Reeve is a dual citizen of Australia and Canada, with a Bachelor of Laws from the Queensland University of Technology and is currently undertaking her Master of Laws at The University of Melbourne.
Ashna Gobin is a food lover, experienced chef and an innovative food and nutrition sciences student. She has more than 10 years’ experience in hospitality and has worked alongside many incredible chefs. She is an award-winning product developer of the 2019 Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology (AIFST) Student Product Development Competition and the 2018 Australian Macadamia Society Innovation Challenge.
Gobin is also an active member of the AIFST, Royal Australian Chemical Institute and Centre for Advanced Sensory Science. She has a strong passion for food innovation and future trends and wants to motivate the next generation of food innovators.
Marketing Manager - Growth, Mondelez
Amy Richards is the Marketing Manager of the ANZ Growth Hub at Mondelez International. Mondelēz International is one of Australia and New Zealand’s favourite food manufacturers, enriched with more than 100 years of tradition and a portfolio of iconic brands including – Cadbury Dairy Milk, The Natural Confectionery Co., Pascall, Oreo and BelVita. Their purpose is to empower people to snack right. As a company, they strive to lead the future of snacking around the world by offering the right snack, for the right moment, made the right way.
Managing Director, Converte
John Ridley is an experienced professional in the sustainability and the environment sector. He has over 30 years’ experience in environmental management, with a focus on food and climate security. In 2011 he started Converte to help restore health to the global food system.
GM Business Development, Bosch
Rindt has engaged across many industries in his role as GM for Business Development at Bosch Australia. He has experience in renewable energy, software & services, electrified mobility and has a deep understanding of Bosch’s broad portfolio. He applies the combined expertise across the Group to create valuable investments, strategic partnerships and business opportunities.
His current focus is to establish an effective agribusiness group for Bosch in Oceania that plays a significant role within the Bosch Group. He is part of Bosch’s global agriculture strategy team with a focus on the application of technology to the sector. He collaborates with industry, government, research organisations and start-ups to meet the Group’s objectives. Rindt holds a Bachelor Degree in Engineering (Electrical) and an MBA from Monash University in Melbourne.
Strategic Projects Director, Farmers for Climate Action
Anna Rose is the Strategic Projects Director of Farmers for Climate Action (FCA), a movement that puts farmers on the front lines of climate change and at the front and centre of the solutions. FCA was founded three years ago and is now a movement of 5,000 farmers across Australia taking action behind and beyond the farm gate. Rose is also Governor of WWF-Australia, author of the book Madlands: A Journey to Change the Mind of a Climate Sceptic and co-starred in the ABC documentary I Can Change Your Mind on Climate Change.
She is a Churchill Fellow, a former Myer Foundation Innovation Fellow, an Associate at Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute and a Visiting Fellow at the Australian National University Climate Change Institute. Rose is also an advisory board member of the University of Queensland’s Global Change Institute and the Australian Geographic Society.
Director of Market Development, Zero Mass Water
Kristen Roy is an international lawyer with a decade of experience representing African and Asian communities in large-scale environmental litigation. She managed the world’s largest class action against Shell in Nigeria following devastating oil spills in a local fishing village.
First-hand exposure to the impacts of extractive energy led her to move her focus into renewable technologies and sustainable solutions. She moved back to Australia to manage utility-scale solar with French renewable producer Neoen, who owns the largest lithium-ion battery in the world. With Zero Mass Water, Roy now works to provide sustainable and innovative clean water solutions for remote, rural and urban populations through SOURCE renewable water technology.
Head of Sustainability, SunRice
Lynette Ryan is Head of Sustainability at SunRice, leading the important work outlined in SunRice’s inaugural Sustainability Report. Working towards leveraging the sustainability credentials of SunRice and the Australian rice industry to drive positive impact for the environment, communities and consumers, the SunRice approach has identified eight UN Sustainable Development Goals it believes the company has the greatest opportunity to contribute to.
With a background in legal, Ryan has held roles as in-house legal counsel with large Australian and international organisations such as Lion Nathan and Qantas. She took her passion to see business facilitate a change for good to move into the corporate social responsibility and sustainability sector. Ryan holds Bachelors of Commerce and Law from University of New South Wales and a Graduate Certificate in Social Impact from UNSW and Centre for Social Impact.
Chairman, Food + Wine Victoria
Radek Sali stands as one of Australia’s most successful businessmen and a serial entrepreneur in the health and wellness sector. He revolutionised the Swisse Wellness group by making the category aspirational, pioneering the use of brand ambassadors. As CEO, Sali charted record sales and created a positive working culture, twice winning the honour of Best Place to Work in Australia, in 2015 and 2016. In 2015 Sali helped negotiate the sale of the group to Hong Kong listed Biostime for over $1.7 billion, one of the biggest private company transactions in Australian history.
Sali used the proceeds to set up his company, Light Warrior, with ex-Goldman Sachs banker Adam Gregory. Light Warrior is an investment group committed to creating shared value by investing in businesses that are socially responsible and environmentally conscious. In addition to being Chairman of Light Warrior, Radek is the Chairman of MAdE Establishment and a Director for Made by Cow, One Giant Mind, Hydralyte, myDNA, Stratosphere and Wanderlust Australia. Sali is also the Chairman and Co-founder of the not-for-profit Lightfolk Foundation, Chairman of Food + Wine Victoria, a Director for the charity Igniting Change, Hawthorn Football Club Director, The B Team member, the National Institute of Integrative Medicine Director and a Campaign Cabinet member for La Trobe University. In 2016 he was CEO in residence at The University of Melbourne. He is an Honorary Alumni at La Trobe University.
CEO, Food South Australia
Catherine Sayer is Chief Executive Officer of Food South Australia, the State’s peak industry body for food manufacturers and producers. She is passionate and committed to developing South Australia’s food industry and continuing to raise the profile of the importance of the industry. Sayer leads a team of more than 10 staff in Adelaide as well as China and Japan. She graduated with a degree in Business Management, majoring in Marketing and since that time has worked with a number of large organisations across a number of sectors, both private and public, and ran a marketing consultancy prior to joining Food South Australia.
She is currently Chair of the Tropical Tuna Management Advisory Committee (a Commonwealth Fishery) and a member of the Glenelg Football Club board. She is also a member of the Chiefs for Gender Equity and a member of the Agribusiness Advisory Board at The University of Adelaide.
Scate’s journey within the Australian Hemp industry commenced in 2014 which subsequently lead to the creation of High on Hemp, Australias first educational platform and marketing agency specialising in Cannabis. It was her passion and desire to play a key role within the industry to educate those living within Australia on the insights and knowledge she has gained from her extensive global travels and networks. In 2018, Tegan co-founded MaMilk, Australias first Hemp milk using locally sourced ingredients.
My name is Khadija Siddiqui and I am currently a student studying at Australian Islamic College of Sydney. I was born in Pakistan and raised in Australia. I’m proud to be identified as a Muslim woman being surrounded by my brothers and sisters in Islam of different cultures, religions, status, backgrounds and ethnicity. I have grown up in a very diverse society that I’m very thankful for as it had innovated me to overcome my barriers in life and have a more positive mindset.
Founder and Managing Director, NCES Enterprises
Nicholas Simms is a consumer goods specialist with a record of strategically applying key insights, consumer technology, experience and innovative thinking to challenge legacy and deliver greater shareholder value. His track record includes time as General Manager of five:am organics, which went from startup to $86-million exit in under four years, and CEO of Bubs Australia, transitioning it from a small private entity to an ASX Top 500 company with a market cap of more than $500 million. NCES Enterprises is a boutique strategic advisory and investment company focused on consumer goods. Simms is passionate about building businesses and brands that are truly better.
IoT and AI Lead, Microsoft
Matt is the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence Lead for Microsoft Australia, where he is responsible for building and executing national strategies in these technology areas across product, sales and marketing. He also works closely with customers to create plans for successful technology adoption. One of his current focuses is on the ethical and secure implementation of AI and IoT in all industries.
Previously, he was the IoT Technology Specialist in Telstra’s Chief Technology Office. He led the development of vehicle collision technology leveraging the 4G network, explored new business models to improve the uptake of sustainable tech in agriculture, and built Australia’s first publicly-accessible IoT Lab for end-to-end design, testing and prototyping of IoT solutions.
My name is Samantha and I am a Year 11 student at Brentwood Secondary College. For a long time I have been interested in the innovation of the environment, thinking of ideas for a sustainable future. As technology begins to evolve it brings up new issues relating to the future. I think that could potentially be an excellent thing. Now is a great time for these ideas, which I find really exciting. It’s great to be able to contribute to something that could be life-changing.
Organiser, Cultured Meat Symposium
Alex Shirazi hosts Cultured Meat and Future Food, a podcast dedicated to spreading the word about cellular agriculture technology. He’s also the co-organiser of the Cultured Meat Symposium and founder of San Francisco agency Phlint, a retail analytics firm specialising in shopper trends in brick and mortar stores. Cultured Meat Symposium is a conference held in Silicon Valley highlighting the top industry insights of the cell-based meat revolution. The next edition of Cultured Meat Symposium will be held in November 2019.
Alex studied advertising and brand design at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Founder and President, Food Future Strategies
Laura Shulman is the President and Founder of Food Future Strategies, a consultancy focused on building breakthrough positioning and communications strategies for entrepreneurial-minded brands both big and small. She has nearly 20 years of experience developing insight-driven, multi-stakeholder initiatives for global consumer packaged goods companies, commodity groups and associations including Mondelez International, Campbell Soup Company, PepsiCo, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and Dairy Management Inc.
Shulman’s expertise includes nutrition strategy, reputation management, strategic partnerships, purpose platforms, thought leadership and consumer engagement. Most recently, she built and ran a multimillion-dollar food and nutrition practice at FleishmanHillard and has held senior executive positions at Edelman and Weber Shandwick.
I am a 17-year-old entrepreneur and student living in Melbourne, Victoria. I have grown up in a family that is very involved and passionate about the food industry. Because of this, I see first-hand the effects of climate change and changing economic factors that affect our food supply. Having parents that each run their own separate food businesses, both of which are closely connected to farming, it’s not unusual to have a daily discussion about innovation in food technology and the effects of climate change.
My most recent business venture was founded to help farmers gain extra income in hard times. I came up with the concept for Treehab about nine months ago and it was incorporated on 1 July. We design and build tiny houses that are innovative and most importantly sustainable. Before this I spent years trying to reduce Co2 emissions from cars through carpooling technology in Melbourne.
Our generation is the future. Over hundreds of years, the farming industry has come a long way, but we still have a long road ahead. Our population is sky-rocketing so the issue of food supply shortages are extremely current and must be tackled. The future will be supported with advancements in AI, drones and vertical farming. I am confident if we can put together the amazing minds and technology, we can solve many of the challenges we are facing.
Deputy Secretary, Australian Department of Health
Adjunct Professor John Skerritt is Deputy Secretary of the Australian Department of Health. Apart from being part of the Executive team, he has line responsibility for the Therapeutic Goods Administration and the Office of Drug Control. He is an Adjunct Full Professor at The University of Sydney, University of Canberra and the University of Queensland, holds First Class Honours, a University Medal and a PhD in pharmacology. Skerritt is the author of almost 300 publications and 10 patents. He has extensive experience in medical, agricultural and environmental policy, as well as regulation, research management, technology application and commercialisation.
Co-founder and Chief Financial Officer, ProAgni
Fiona Soulsby is the Co-founder and Chief Financial Officer of ProAgni, an ag biotech company developing nutrition products that contribute to ethical and sustainable animal production that is good for human health, animal welfare and industry performance.
Soulsby has 20 years of experience working across health, agriculture and business in both private and public enterprise. With a focus on removing ingested antibiotics from production systems and improving efficiencies to reduce emissions, Soulsby and her ProAgni co-founders are paving the way for sustainably grown meat. Driven by an inquiring mind and a belief that anything is possible, Soulsby has been invaluable in managing the respective R&D partnerships, product trials and bringing ProAgni’s novel probiotic developments to commercial reality.
Adrian Spencer founded Sampano in late 2016 with the goal of building an Australian value chain for the burgeoning vitamins, minerals and supplements industry. Known as the nutraceutical industry, in Australia, this industry relies on $1.1-billion-worth of imported ingredients. Sampano is one of several companies that Spencer has founded since 2006, working with industry to secure over $500 million in funding for innovation and expansion projects all around Australia, including in the agriculture and manufacturing sectors.
Spencer began his career in agriculture in north-east Victoria in 1992, gaining first-hand experience in propagating, growing, harvesting and processing berries, apples and stone fruit for local and export markets. Following this, he worked around Australia as a geoscientist and then a finance and funding expert for multinational companies.
General Manager, Trade and International, Department of Industry, Innovation and Science
Martin currently heads the Trade and International Branch within the Australian Department of Industry, Innovation and Science which provides support for the internationalisation of Australian industry, encourages Australia’s multilateral and bilateral industry and trade cooperation, and manages the Commonwealth’s relationships with standards and conformity assessment bodies.
Squire previously held positions within the Resources and Energy Divisions of the department including General Manager of Offshore Resources branch and General Manager of Low Emissions Coal and CO2 Storage branch, and an 18-month secondment to Perth to work with Australia’s national oil and gas regulator. He is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and completed postgraduate studies in public policy at the Australian National University. He also studied at the University of Edinburgh as a Chevening Scholarship recipient.
Trade Commissioner and Counsellor Commercial, Austrade Tokyo
Stanilewicz has been Trade Commissioner and Counsellor Commercial with Austrade Tokyo since December 2017. In this role, she has Tokyo Post management responsibilities as well as industry team leadership and management responsibilities across the following sectors: agribusiness & food; tourism and sports services & technologies; e-commerce and consumer/lifestyle products. Cheryl is also Austrade’s Global Sector Leader for Agribusiness & Food. Prior to Tokyo, Cheryl was Austrade’s State Director, Queensland & Northern Territory, based in Brisbane from 2009-2017. In her 20+ year career in Austrade, she has also served internationally in senior roles in Singapore, Washington DC and Osaka.
Executive Innovation Chef, Woolworths Limited
Bazil Stander’s vast knowledge of international food trends is without parallel. His endless pursuit of finding new flavours has taken him around the globe, from humble beginnings in a kitchen at a London bistro to now heading a multimillion-dollar development kitchen in Sydney at Woolworths, where he inspires product development teams with ideas for fresh food concepts. With more than 22 years in the industry to his credit, Bazil has worked in restaurants, foodservice menu development, food retail and food manufacturing in the United Kingdom, South Africa & Australia. Bazil founded the Food Innovator brand at Woolworths in 2014.
Account Director, GS1 Australia
Andrew is a leading industry expert and well-respected supply chain professional with over 25 years’ experience in the FMCG and food retail sectors. He currently leads the Supply Chain Integrity team at GS1 Australia, where he is responsible for developing insightful initiatives to ensure the highest level of efficiency, safety, traceability and best practice in the Australian food and beverage and retail sector. Steele is an active member of a number of industry working groups in the retail grocery, liquor, meat and fresh produce sectors.
CSIRO Agriculture and Food
Dr Cathryn O’Sullivan received both her Bachelor’s degree and PhD in Environmental Engineering from the University of Queensland. Her early research explored the role of microbes in the treatment of solid waste and wastewaters, the production of biofuels and the cycling of nutrients in freshwater and marine sediments. Her recent work has expanded to explore interactions between plants and soil microbes involved in plant nutrition and disease, as well as the ways that researchers can help the controlled environment and urban farming industries.
Her work uses microbial, molecular and physiological tools to explore ways to improve food production with a focus on disease control, nutrient use efficiency, waste reuse and alternative growing systems.
Minister for Agriculture, Minister for Regional Development and Minister for Resources
Born and bred in regional Victoria, Jaclyn grew up in Benalla before completing a Bachelor of Laws at Deakin University. After finishing university, she became a disability carer at Alkira Residential Services, where the importance of providing good policy to those who need support became evident. She became an Industrial Officer at the Australian Services Union to further her legal training, before moving into government as an adviser to Deputy Premier and Attorney-General Rob Hulls. In 2010, she was appointed as Senior Legal and Justice Adviser to then- Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews.
In 2014, Jaclyn was elected Member for Northern Victoria, and became the Upper House Government Whip as well as sitting on the Legal and Social Issues Committee, Independent Broad Based Anti-Corruption Committee, Accountability and Oversight Committee and the Legislative Council Privileges Committee.
She was incredibly proud to have been appointed to Daniel Andrews’ 50% female Cabinet following the 2018 election, and even more thrilled to be representing the hardworking farmers, producers and regional Victorians that keep our state moving.
She lives with her husband Gerard, their 2 children and their dog in Sunday Creek, near Broadford.
Co-founder and Director, Beanstalk AgTech
Will Taing is passionate about the intersection of agriculture, food and scalable technologies with the potential to have a sustainable impact across the Asia-Pacific region.
Beanstalk is an open innovation firm helping agribusinesses solve their biggest challenges and capture opportunities through a structured and commercially-oriented innovation process. Through Beantalk’s services, Taing and his team create pathways for high-growth and emerging tech startups to scale through major agribusiness clients across the Asia-Pacific. Beanstalk has offices in Australia (Melbourne & Perth) and Singapore.
Over the past 10 years, Taing has dedicated his career to leading key initiatives in the Australian and Asia-Pacific agriculture sector across strategy, policy, inbound international investment, trade facilitation, industry development and resources management.
Taing also currently serves on AgriFutures Australia’s Emerging Industries Advisory Panel, a Steering Committee Member for Australia India Youth Dialogue, a member of Australian China Business Council’s Committee for Agribusiness and Food, among others.
Managing Director, China Skinny
Mark Tanner is managing director of Shanghai-based China Skinny. He has provided China-market growth strategies and research to over 150 brands including such Australian household names as Coles, Woolworths, Tourism Australia, ANZ and Westpac, as well as Colgate, Fonterra, Reckitt Benckiser, IKEA, SAIC Motors, IHG, Sun-Maid Raisins, Business Finland and McCain. His views on China have been quoted in more than 200 international media outlets including Bloomberg, Reuters, FT and Forbes, where he is a columnist. Tanner authors the most-read newsletter about marketing to China, and is a regular keynote speaker addressing audiences around the globe.
Young Pioneer, Researcher, The University of Melbourne
Since 2017, Tavan has been researching the nutritional quality of microgreens and soilless systems. She completed a Bachelor of Science with Honours in horticultural sciences at the University of Tehran. Her main area of research interest is evaluating the effects of environmental factors on the quality of leafy vegetables by implementing non-destructive methods.
Through the research that she has been conducting on microgreens over the past few years, she has attempted to establish a resource use efficient system to grow microgreens in a vertical urban farm at The University of Melbourne. Her aim is to explore the as-yet-unknown world of microgreens by studying the possible ways they could add value to our diets.
Portfolio Manager, Rainmaking Innovation
Nigel Teh is currently with Rainmaking Innovation’s corporate innovation practice in Singapore, where he focuses on helping corporates unlock concrete commercial value in innovation beyond buzzwords. Prior to this role, Teh spent five years with the Singapore Economic Development Board managing the republic’s foreign direct investments in sectors such as chemicals, bio-industrials and agri-food tech. He was also concurrently part of the Board’s pioneer team for internal innovation efforts as a practitioner and trainer of the lean startup methodology.
Teh began his career in finance and is a graduate of Singapore Management University.
Partner, Deloitte Access Economics
Dr Daniel Terrill is Lead Partner for Deloitte’s Agribusiness client service group and leader of the agricultural and environmental economics teams of Deloitte Access Economics. He is an economist with a unique blend of professional and lived experience in agriculture and environmental management. He comes from a livestock and broad acre cropping background from a family farm in Victoria.
Dr Terrill received his PhD from The University of Melbourne, where he researched policy solutions to improved collective environmental outcomes from farming land. He has over 15 years of experience as a microeconomist, where much of his work is at the intersection of agriculture and the environment, particularly addressing the challenge of feeding growing populations more sustainably.
CEO and Director, Mamanyjun Tree Enterprises
Pat Torres currently volunteers as Centre Manager for the Babagarra Aboriginal Incorporated family and children services organisation at the Mary Minyarl Centre, which showcases a range of cultural products in the community centre in her hometown of Broome, Western Australia. She completed a Bachelor of Indigenous Languages and Linguistics through the Charles Darwin University at the Bachelor Institute of Technology Campus, Northern Territory between 2014 and 2017 to record the remnants of languages for her family’s Djugun, Ngumbarl and Jabirr-Jabirr languages.
Over the last 43 years, she has worked as an educator, cross-cultural trainer, curriculum development officer, writer, illustrator, public servant, manager and coordinator of local community organisations. Torres has also worked as an academic lecturer and course coordinator with several Australian universities including Northern Territory University, Bachelor Institute of Aboriginal Education, University of Western Australia and Curtin University. She has also worked for schools, community organisations and festival events both in Australia and overseas as a writer, illustrator, storyteller and cultural educator in residence.
Torres is the CEO and Director of Mamanyjun Tree Enterprises Pty Ltd, a company that specialises in West Kimberley native plant foods and trades as Mayi Harvests.
Senior Research Scientist, CSIRO
Cuong Trang is a Senior Research Scientist at CSIRO in Health and Biosecurity, and an Affiliate Senior Lecturer at The University of Adelaide. He has a PhD in nutritional physiology and gastroenterology, and more than 15 years of research experience in nutrition, gut disorders and wellbeing in both paediatric and adults. Trang has a particular interest in developing effective measures of gut health and function, such as the gut barrier function, and how this impacts health and wellbeing.
Entrepreneur in Residence, The University of Queensland
A national leader in entrepreneurship and the commercialisation of intellectual property, Cameron Turner has helped form four high-tech startups and is a lecturer and the inaugural Entrepreneur in Residence at The University of Queensland’s Business School.
Using his diverse experience in applied research, commercialisation and economic and international business development, Turner helps researchers, students and entrepreneurs commercialise world-class innovations based on university research. He has been a managing director, board member, and strategic advisor, and is currently the CEO of Progel, a University of Queensland startup that has developed the world’s most advanced probiotic drink and immune boosting supplements. The startups Turner has helped create have raised more than $10 million in investment and developed a wide range of products in the food, agriculture and health sectors.
Manager - Policy Strategy, Dairy Australia
Susannah Tymms has devoted over 20 years to Australian agriculture, working in government, industry and the private sector. She is currently the Manager of Policy Strategy at Dairy Australia, overseeing the delivery of technical policy support to industry to drive implementation of positive and sustainable outcomes for dairy farmers. Practice areas include animal health and welfare, water, energy, climate change, biotechnology, labour, agricultural and veterinary chemicals, and food safety.
Commencing her career as a scientist, Tymms soon understood the impact on farming that the legislative and policy environment could have. She moved into policy roles and advised four different Ministers for Agriculture in the State Government of Victoria before founding an agricultural advisory consultancy in Canberra. Her extended family are beef producers in Gippsland, Victoria.
Van Caenegem studied Law in Belgium and the UK. He has been a stipendiary researcher at the Max-Planck Institute for Comparative Intellectual Property Law in Munich, FRG. He held the inaugural CAL/ANU Copy-right Fellowship. He has been a visiting Professor at the Sorbonne University, Paris, the University of Ghent, Belgium and is an Honorary Visiting Professor at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
He has been a consultant to DFAT in relation to the protection of geographical indications of origin. He has undertaken research on the topic of geographical indications of origin in Australia funded by the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC, no AgriFutures Australia). He has published in the area of comparative law, intellectual property law and geographical indications, legal philosophy and criminal procedure. He is a Professor of Law at Bond University, Queensland, Australia.
Partner, AgriFood Tech Sector Leader, KPMG
As KPMG Australia’s Head of AgriFood Tech, Ben van Delden brings extensive experience working with clients to identify and assess market and investment opportunities, commercial insights and analysis to accelerate commercialisation of research. van Delden is a non-executive director of Food Agility CRC, that aims to transform and digitalise food production systems and drive new value and business models for the Australian food and agriculture sector.
van Delden led the project to set the aspirational growth target for the Gippsland region‘s $7 billion-food and fibre sector and industry engagement program that identified six core enabling growth platforms for the region, culminating in the report Accelerating Growth for the Gippsland Food and Fibre Industry. He advised on the development of the Digital Agriculture pilot program for the Victorian Government to provide IoT and agtech solutions to up to 600 farmers in the dairy, horticulture, cropping and sheep sectors, as part of a $12-million program.
Principal Solutions Architect, Alibaba Cloud
Sabith Venkitachalapathy is a hands-on technology leader with more than 20 years of experience building and maintaining large-scale distributed systems and solving problems at scale. As a Principal Solutions Architect, he is responsible for determining the business, data, application and technical architectures enabling development teams to turn ideas into reliable, scalable production systems.
Principal Research Fellow, RMIT University
Associate Professor Karli Verghese is a Principal Research Fellow at the RMIT University School of Design in Melbourne. Verghese’s research involves leading industry-applied and government-funded research projects in the fields of food waste, packaging sustainability and life cycle assessment. Her research topics include mapping and understanding the causality of food waste across supply chains, developing sustainability decision support tools and the role of packaging in minimising food waste.
Verghese supervisors Honours, Masters and PhD students and teaches into the Industrial Design program at RMIT. She is also the Program Leader of the Reduce research program in the Fight Food Waste Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) and a member of the international Packaging Saves Food Research Group.
Managing Director, Rich Glen Olive Estate
Mum-of-four and a successful business owner, Rosalind Vodusek is driven by a passion for good food, sustainable agriculture, regional produce and family. In just eight years, Vodusek and the team at Rich Glen Olive Estate have transformed a struggling farm business into the number one food destination in Victoria.
A chef by trade, Vodusek started the value-adding side of the family business eight years ago when the estate with its 36,000 olive trees was struggling with the cost of production. Over the years, her ideas and determination, coupled with her upbeat team, have built the brand and reputation of Rich Glen Olive Estate by diversifying and value-adding the business.
Managing Partner, McKinna et al
After a career change from the arts, Catherine Wall gained over 15 years experience in the horticultural sector where she was the recipient of innovation awards and served on industry expert panels. She has been General Manager of a market-leading horticultural business and a company director. Now, as managing partner of agrifood strategy consultancy McKinna et al, Wall has worked with the boards of some of Australia’s largest food and wine businesses and academic institutions, as well as advising government departments on agrifood and wine policy.
Managing Director, Natural Evolution
Krista Watkins is a leader in agricultural innovation and the Co-founder and Managing Director of Natural Evolution, a company specialising in products made from green banana and other waste produce. She is an advocate for innovation and disruption, and passionate about reinvigorating the Australian food manufacturing industry.
Watkins’ interest in reducing waste and finding uses for unsaleable produce led to the development of Natural Evolution in 2015. Following tireless work and research, she and husband Rob built the world’s first pharmaceutical-grade green banana processing facility and pioneered the process of turning produce into functional foods and cosmetics. The business has experienced remarkable growth, expanding into international markets and winning sustainability and innovation awards in Australia and overseas. Watkins’ efforts earned her the prestigious Agrifutures Rural Woman of the Year award in 2018.
Managing Director, SoilCQuest
Guy Webb has more than a decade of experience designing functional and practical microbial packages within dryland broadacre systems for semi-arid environments. He is the Managing Director of SoilCQuest, an independent non-profit that was established to fast track the research, development and deployment of a new giga-tonne-capacity soil carbon sequestration biotechnology. The end-goal is to reduce the excess atmospheric carbon that threatens global food security and to improve the world’s agricultural soils, making them more fertile and resilient.
The SoilCQuest team includes leading scientists and agricultural specialists in the fields of microbiology, soil science, land management and plant production. Webb himself has a strong background in agronomy and a deep understanding of the scientific principles of soil health, microbiology and sustainable land management. He has been the driving force behind the organisation for several years.
Executive Chairman and Co-founder, AgriWebb
Justin Webb grounded the foundation of AgriWebb at the confluence of a five-generation Australian farming background and a degree in applied mathematics from Harvard University. AgriWebb is now the world’s leading farm management and meat supply chain software, covering over 15% of all sheep and cattle in Australia and an expanding international footprint in South Africa, Brazil and the USA.
A serial entrepreneur, Webb founded and built two hedge funds before selling them to Macquarie Bank and Westpac. He subsequently founded PacWealth Capital, a $4-billion advisory firm in the South Pacific. More recently, he served in Australia as a Director and Co-head of the $60-billion Retail Client Business for BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager with $7 trillion in assets.
Webb earned a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Economics and Applied Mathematics from Harvard University and holds a Master of Business Administration with distinction from Oxford University, where he was the OBA Scholar.
I am 15 years old and I am passionate about saving this planet. If we don’t take action against climate change by 2030 we will have set ourselves up for serious consequences. Australians can take climate action by going zero waste (or trying their best), committing to no food waste, buying less food at a time, getting a compost bin, or researching how to make the government hear us.
Aside from environmental issues, I am also interested in musical theatre and have been in six musicals. I have always been interested in writing and have recently written a short film that I am currently producing myself.
Research Director, La Trobe Institute for Agriculture and Food/ ARC Research Hub for Medicinal Agriculture
Professor James Whelan is world-leading for his research on plant mitochondria. He is currently Research Director for the La Trobe Institute for Agriculture and Food and the ARC Research Hub for Medicinal Agriculture, and Chief Investigator for the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology.
The ARC Research Hub for Medicinal Agriculture (ARC MedAg Hub) is the first of its kind in Australia. The $24-million initiative, supported by Australian government, industry and university funds, aims to transform the production of high-quality, plant-derived therapeutics into an integrated, Australia-wide industry that spans primary producers and manufacturers.
In March 2019 Professor Whelan was elected as a fellow to the Australian Academy of Science. His lab has 25 years of expertise in the field of mitochondrial function and mitochondrial signalling of plant’s energy and stress status, evidenced by close to 250 papers in high-impact journals (Plant Cell, Plant Physiology, The Plant Journal).
I am a 14-year-old student at Cornish College in Bangholme, Victoria, who is passionate about the environment, humanity, animals and robotics. I am a member of three robotic teams, as well as a mentor to peers at Real Time Learning. I also work on my parent’s rescue farm.
I founded not-for-profit organisation KWAK Victoria that hosted a festival called Melbourne YouthFest that aimed to promote social inclusion and had more than 1,000 people attend. I’ve also been lucky enough this year to attend an International Robotics Competition representing Australia and have also attended science camps at California Science Centre (in conjunction with USC), UC Berkeley and Caltech.
Economic Development Officer, Njernda Aboriginal Corporation
Kevin WIlliams is Njernda’s Economic Development Officer, working on projects that will create long-term self-sufficient employment opportunities for his local Aboriginal community in Echuca, in Victoria’s north.
Head of Department - Nutrition, Dietetics and Food, Monash University
Gary Williamson holds a Bachelor of Science and a PhD from the University of Sheffield. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (UK), a Registered Nutritionist in the UK and has been Professor and Head of Department at Monash University since November 2018. Prior to this, he was Professor and Chair at the University of Leeds from 2007 to 2018, Head of Nutrient Bioavailability at Nestlé Research Centre in Switzerland and Head of Phytochemicals Group for a decade at Institute of Food Research in the UK. He has spoken at more than 190 invited opening, plenary, keynote and conference seminars at international scientific meetings.
Head of Innovation - SnackFutures, Mondelez International
Brigette Wolf is the Global Head of Innovation for Mondelez International’s SnackFutures innovation and venture hub. She leads the development of new brands and businesses, primarily focusing on the wellbeing of people and the planet, and is a key architect in building an ecosystem of internal experts and cutting-edge external partners to drive innovation in a disruptive and different way. In her 16 years with the company (both as Mondelez and when it was Kraft Foods), Wolf has served as senior director of Global Platform Innovation for Gum, Candy and Biscuits and brand manager for Belvita. She received her undergraduate degrees from The University of Pennsylvania and The Wharton School and her Master of Business Administration from Northwestern Kellogg School of Management.
Director, Dairy Australia
Professor Paul Wood AO obtained his PhD from The John Curtin School of Medical Research at Australian National University in 1982. After a post-doc at The University of Melbourne, he joined the CSIRO Division of Animal Health as Leader of the TB diagnostic and vaccine development program, where he developed the platform for TB diagnostic technology successfully commercialised by CSL, Cellestis and Qiagen. Professor Wood received a number of awards for this research including a CSIRO Medal, ASM award and in 2013 the Clunies Ross Award. Paul was also the Deputy-Director of the CRC for Vaccine Technology from 1993-2000 and has published over 100 scientific papers.
In 1997 he became Vice President of Global Research and Development in Animal Health at CSL and in 2004 joined Pfizer Animal Health as Senior Director, A/NZ Biologicals R&D. In 2008, he left Australia to become Executive Director, Global Discovery, Pfizer AH in Kalamazoo, Michigan. In this role, he led the Global Discovery team for both pharmaceutical and biological products with a staff of 200. Wood returned to Australia in 2012 and established his own consultancy and accepted an Adjunct Professor position at Monash University. He was also a director of startup animal health company Nexvet Biopharma and is one of the founders of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE) mentoring initiative, Industry Mentoring Network in STEM. In 2015 he was elected a Fellow of ATSE. He is on the Board of Women in STEMM Australia and the Global Alliance for Livestock Veterinary Medicines, as well as the Chair of AusBiotech’s Ag & Foodtech Committee. In 2016 he was elected to the Board of Dairy Australia and joined the Scientific Advisory Board for the Australian Agricultural Company. Paul is also a consultant to the agriculture program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. In 2018 Paul was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO).
Leader, Agricultural Value Chains and Food Systems, University of Southern Queensland
Professor Alice Woodhead is a highly experienced strategist and complex systems analyst with an established international reputation for research in global supply chains. She specialises in agriculture and food logistics, and technology systems with a focus on optimising trade, productivity and long-term profitability. Her expertise stretches from regional Australia to global markets and includes organisations of all sizes in both the public and private sector.
With a PhD in agricultural systems and a degree in information systems, Professor Woodhead has had a varied career. She currently leads the University of Southern Queensland’s research services on agricultural value chains and food systems. In addition, she has led research and provided advice to the agricultural, food, mining, energy and construction sectors. She is an OECD fellow and also an advisor to The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (known by its Spanish acronym CIMMYT) in East Africa.
Managing Director, OBE Organic
Dalene Wray’s visionary leadership of a farmer-owned organic beef company has seen OBE Organic emerge as an exemplar of innovation in the broader red meat industry. She is a major force for improving the sustainability and diversity of the Australian beef industry by driving change, innovation and digital adoption at OBE Organic.
Wray has worked in the organic food industry for over a decade, and for six of those years was based in Hong Kong. In Australia, Wray continues to wear many hats, investing her time on the Telstra Queensland Regional Advisory Committee, of which she is a Member, a Board Member of the Department of Foreign Affairs, and Trade Council for Australian Arab Relations, as well as other industry groups. Wray is an in-demand speaker, with addresses in Australia, Mongolia, Qatar, Hong Kong and Mexico.
Managing Director and Founder, Regionality
As Founder and Managing Director of Regionality, Rose Wright is passionate and highly respected in the fields of agrifood and regional tourism. Wright’s career has spanned more than 30 years working in her own companies, with and for industry associations and in the private, government and education sectors. The focus of her work has consistently drawn upon her inherent qualities as a leader, strategic thinker, communicator and team builder. She has a reputation for taking big picture concepts and working with a team to get the job done.
A thought-leader in agri and culinary tourism and regional food systems, Wright has pioneered new approaches in the development and implementation of farm-to-plate value chain growth and helped transform agricultural regions into food destinations.
Senior Economic Advisor and Manager, CSIRO
Katherine Wynn is a Senior Economic Advisor and Manager in CSIRO Futures. In her role, she develops and applies economic analytical frameworks to quantitatively value new and emerging markets and technologies to help her clients make more informed investment decisions. Wynn also leads CSIRO Futures’ climate-related consulting services. Prior to joining CSIRO, Wynn worked at Deloitte Access Economics.
Investment Manager - Venture Capital, Impact Investment Group
Rachel Yang is the Investment Manager at Giant Leap, a venture capital fund backing founders using business to drive positive social and environmental change across three themes: health and wellbeing, sustainable living and empowering people. The fund is backed by the Impact Investment Group. Yang’s background is in management consulting and corporate finance and she is also on the Board of the Catalyst Fund, Impact Investment Group’s charitable foundation.
Olympia Yarger is a farmer, CEO, innovator and leader in insect farming in Australia. Yarger founded insect farm Goterra in 2016 to manage food waste and create livestock feed using robotic, modular insect farms. The modular design means these units can be placed on-site at high-volume food waste management locations such as shopping malls, FMCG factories, intensive farming operations or waste transit stations. Goterra is currently located in Canberra, where it manages food waste for hospitals, 400 households, hotels, restaurants, schools and small businesses.
In addition to being CEO of Goterra, Yarger is also the founding Director and Chair of the Insect Protein Association of Australia. In 2018, a species of fly discovered in the Daintree Rainforest was named Hermetia olympiae in honour of Yarger’s work in building the insect farming industry in Australia.
Regional Director - Trade, Victorian Government Trade and Investment Office Dubai
Kassem Younes is the Regional Director – Trade for the Victorian Government Trade and Investment Office (VGTI) covering the Middle East and Africa, in addition to Russia and CIS countries. Younes has been promoting Victorian industry capabilities across various sectors, including food and beverages, professional services and mining, to export to the Middle East, Africa and CIS countries. His primary role is guiding Victorian businesses in building and growing their export efforts in the region to ensure firms have access to world-class export assistance; market intelligence and strategies for market entry. Younes speaks fluent Arabic, English and Russian in addition to French, and has been living in the United Arab Emirates for more than 17 years.
Executive Director, Tiverton Rothwell Ag Fund
Harry Youngman has been directly involved in agricultural production 30 years, principally in grazing farmland in south-west Victoria, covering lamb, wool and beef production, forestry operations and indigenous grassland management. Youngman’s working knowledge of soil science, plant biology and animal requirements has enabled him to successfully establish a soil amelioration program enhancing the sustainability and productivity across a range of farm and. Compost production from varied waste streams has enabled significant soil and pasture performance improvements in his high rainfall grazing operations. This is now being extrapolated to lower rainfall cropping operations in conjunction with cover cropping, controlled traffic and strategic rotations.
Together with his partner Nigel Sharp, Youngman has established two large threatened-species rehabilitation enclosures, with a third under construction. Reinstating biodiversity from the soil up has been a passion of Youngman’s, with favourable productivity outcomes being recorded.
In 2017, Youngman and Sharp established the Tiverton Rothwell Ag Fund which has raised money to purchase and operate five significant holdings across a wide cross-section of agriculture. The pair have embarked on a number of regenerative initiatives which seek commercial outcomes driven from sustainable practices relating to soil, people, communities and cultures.
My name is Aaliah Aisha Yunus and I am 13 years old. I am a Year 8 student at Australian Islamic College of Sydney. My favourite subjects at school are Technology and English. I love to read during my spare time as reading enables me to see the world through other people’s eyes. I also love to take my learning further by investigating the world around me and the current issues that affect modern-day living. I enjoy public speaking as it allows me to express myself.
Young Pioneer, Member of Agriculture Victoria's Young Farmers Advisory Council
Zappia is a table grape farmer from Merbein, Victoria, Australia. Jennifer completed a Bachelor of Commerce at The University of Sydney. Upon the completion of her degree in 2016, she was awarded the University of Sydney Business School’s Jack McCormack Perpetual Prize in Industrial Relations Practice. The academic prize is awarded annually, on the recommendation of the Head of the Department of Industrial Relations, to the most proficient student in the elective, Industrial Relations Practice.
Jennifer is a member of Agriculture Victoria’s Young Farmers Advisory Council. The council consists of eight dynamic young people, from various agricultural industries and regions, who advise government on issues affecting young people in agriculture and on program delivery. Jennifer is committed to fostering mentoring and collaboration among young farmers, to increase the productivity and sustainability of Australian agriculture.
Marketing Director, AeroFarms
Alina Zolotareva is the Marketing Director at AeroFarms, a leading clean-technology company that builds and operates responsible, state-of-the-art indoor vertical farms around the world, enabling local production and transforming agriculture. A Certified B-Corporation, AeroFarms has been recognised by Fast Company as one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies for Food two years in a row and by Inc. as one of the Top 25 Disruptive Companies. At the 2017 Seeds&Chips Global Food Innovation Summit in Milan, Italy, AeroFarms was presented with the Best Smart City Vision Award for its contribution to the economic and environmental sustainability of Newark and its potential to create positive change in cities all over the world.
Zolotareva, a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), leverages her background in nutrition science and public health to translate nutrition science to consumers, playing a key role in AeroFarms’ mission to combat food deserts and bring fresh, local, nutritious leafy greens to all communities. In addition to marketing and sales, Alina also works on product development, working on the cutting-edge of leafy greens innovation in flavor and nutrition. Before AeroFarms, Alina had worked for a culinary nutrition foodservice consulting company based in NYC focused on improving health through great tasting and sustainable food. She has also spent time in nutrition and marketing at Unilever and other artisanal and local food brands. Alina is a graduate of Cornell University and Presidential Research Scholar with a B.S. with Honors in Nutrition Sciences and Dietetics.