The Symposium's speakers and moderators consist of food scientists, technologists, technicians and engineers conducting research and developing technologies to enhance the processing of human and animal foods in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Meet the Speakers
Bimbola Adesanmi is a food security and nutrition specialist with over 15 years’ experience in nutrition, food security, school and public health nutrition programming that includes driving defined development through programs. She is the senior special assistant to the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on the Home Grown School Feeding (HGSF) Program. She is responsible for leading the HGSF program, and developing it in alignment with global HGSF standards, while respecting context specific variations on HGSF ‘best practices. She provides guidance and brings consistency between the different levels of government, ministries, and development partners. Bimbola holds a Post-graduate degree in Public Health Nutrition. She is passionate about evidence-based programming that impacts sustainable development and about improving education outcomes through health and nutrition, especially in the developing world. She also serves as the Country Director, Nigeria for the Partnership for Child Development, Imperial College, London.
Ph.D., Associate Scientist/Food Scientist and Technology, International Institute of Tropcial Agriculture (IITA)-Nigeria, and Busie Maziya-Dixon, IITA
Dr. Emmanuel Alamu holds BSc and MSc chemistry, and a doctorate in Food Chemistry with over 16 years of research experience and strong analytical skills in food science and nutrition, and experienced in carrying out nutrition-sensitive agricultural research using different tools and techniques. Specifically, his research lines primarily examined: the physical and bioactive characteristics of biofortified and non-biofortified crops such as soybean, maize, cowpea, cassava, yam; retention studies on the bioactive compounds in unprocessed and processed biofortified crops and foods; anti-oxidant activities/capacities of unprocessed and processed biofortified crops; bioavailability and bioefficacy of processed biofortified crops and associated products; sensory characteristics of products from biofortified crops. Product development/sensory evaluation and consumer tests of the developed products, Food to food fortification (cereal, root or tuber flour with a legume flour added) targeting household level and processors at different scales. He has many publications in local and foreign journals.
Ph.D., Associate Professor of Food Science and Technology, Department of Food Science & Technology, Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Consumer Sciences, University for Development Studies, Ghana
Francis Kweku Amagloh is an Associate Professor of Food Science and Technology in the Department of Food Science & Technology, Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Consumer Sciences, University for Development Studies, one of the 10 public universities in Ghana.
He holds a PhD in Human Nutrition from Massey University, New Zealand, MSc in Food Science & Technology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology, Kumasi, Ghana and BSc in Nutrition & Food Science, University of Ghana, Legon, Ghana. He currently heads the Department of Food Science & Technology Department.
He has a wealth of experience in human nutrition and product development. His research focuses on recipe refinement of both commercial- and household-levels food products to improve nutrition and for wealth creation. He is currently collaborating with scientists from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Tuskegee University, US; International Potato Centre; and local non-governmental organizations on using soybean, orange-fleshed sweetpotato, and orange maize to improve nutrition status (example, vitamin A).
Prof Amagloh is a member of Ghana, Association of Science, Ghana Nutrition Association, African Potato Association, African Nutrition Association and African Society of Food Science and Technologist. Francis has a good number of publications to his credit.
Scholarly websites: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Francis_Amagloh and https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7243-0972
Corporate Lead, SayeTech Company Limited, Ghana
Jeffrey Boakye Appiagyei is an agricultural technology entrepreneur from Ghana with a passion for building sustainable agribusinesses in Africa. He studied Agricultural Engineering for his undergraduate program at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Ghana. From his sophomore to senior year, he led teams to undertake three projects: design and fabrication of portable soybean threshers; design and prototyping of a solar evaporative cooling unit for fruits and vegetables; and design of a vibrating seed cleaner. It was during this venture that he met SIL. He saw a flyer in his department that advertised SIL’s need for small sized soybean thresher designers. His interest was piqued because the flyer mentioned that the threshers were for women in the Northern region of Ghana and other parts of Africa, where he had experience reaching out to farmers. He brought together a team to work on the project, and the rest is history. They emerged as winners of the program and he got the opportunity to join the SIL thresher team. He founded Sayetech in September 2018 a company which manufactures smart Agricultural machinery for small holder farmers.
Michael J. Boyer
Michael J. Boyer, PE, President, AWT Management Services, Inc., United States
Michael J. Boyer is the President AWTMS, Atlanta Georgia. He has a BS/MS in civil engineering, with a minor chemistry from University of Missouri – Columbia, and 40 plus years’ experience in agribusiness water, wastewater and by products management. Michael has worked at 200 oilseed, veg oil, biodiesel, corn processing and related facilities and contributed in related areas including transportation maintenance, food grade tank and rail car wash and related issues. He has developed sustainability plans for numerous private sector companies in these businesses and served as a management consulting on business strategy and environmental management issues. Michael has authored 50 plus papers and presentations in related areas, with AOCS and other public forums. He is a native of St. Louis Missouri, and an Atlanta resident since 1973. In his spare time Mike likes the outdoors, hunting, fishing, golf and has built his own 10 hole golf course on his farm in middle Georgia. He has been to sub Saharan Africa!
Ph.D., Global Protein Scientific Affairs Lead, DuPont, Nutrition and Biosciences, United States
Michelle Braun is a nutrition scientist with experience in clinical research and nutrition translation. She is currently the Global Protein Scientific Affairs Lead at DuPont Nutrition & Biosciences. Over the course of her career, Dr. Braun has led research investigating a variety of health outcomes, with a particular focus on child nutrition, conducting several clinical trials related to protein and mineral metabolism in children. She is active in several organizations related to the field and has served in volunteer leadership roles with the American Society for Nutrition, the Institute for Food Technology, the International Life Sciences Institute, the International Food Information Council, and is currently the President of the Soy Nutrition Institute. She earned her Doctorate and Masters degrees in Foods and Nutrition from Purdue University with a BS in Nutrition Science from Indiana University.
Ph.D., Director, International Agricultural Programs, University of Missouri, United States
Kerry Clark is head of the mechanization program of the Soybean Innovation Lab. She and her team of three Ghanaian engineers have been introducing a multi-crop thresher to artisans and farmers across Africa. Kerry is a crop scientist with a long history of trying to provide appropriate technologies to farmers.
M.Sc. student, University of Guelph, Canada
Stacie Dobson is a Master’s Student supervised by Dr. Alejandro Marangoni of the Food, Health and Aging Laboratory at the University of Guelph. She is in the final stage of her Master’s, where she has been developing a novel process for the creation of a fibrous meat analogue. The research has allowed her to investigate the functionality, structure and interactions between various plant proteins and starches. Stacie also has certificate as a Professional culinary chef which has helped her further understand the food industry and create a product with desired tastes and textures.
Ph.D., Program Director, Southern Africa Farmer-to-Farmer program, Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CNFA), United States
Marjatta Eilittä is the Program Director for the USAID-funded Farmer-to-Farmer Southern Africa program implemented by Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CNFA), and is based in Lusaka, Zambia. She has worked in agricultural development and research for 25 years, of which 12 years were based in West Africa. During that time, she led agricultural development programs and projects funded by USAID and other donors in livestock research for development, regional trade, agricultural markets and inputs, and soil fertility management. Marjatta has a Ph.D. in Agronomy, with a minor in Food and Resource Economics from the University of Florida. E-mail: email@example.com.
Director, Tan Feeds Ltd., Tanzania
Jay Ewald is a fourth generation Midwest and International Agri-businessmen and farmer. He is the founder and principal of FAF Developments, Sustainable Botanicals International and partner of Fair Acres Stock Farms and Cabaña Santa Cecilia. He is a passionate international agricultural entrepreneur. He has more than 40 years’ experience at various levels of agricultural value chain management and has built businesses as Founder, CEO, Board Member or Adviser. He and his family own and operate corn, soybean and purebred beef cattle operations in Minnesota, Iowa, Argentina, Uruguay, and Costa Rica. He has done extensive business development and consulting work in the Americas, Africa, Middle East, Europe, and Asia, including advising a feed mill and oilseed processing company in Tanzania.
Ph.D., Researcher, Programa de Posgrado en Alimentos del Centro de la República (PROPAC), Research and Graduate Studies in Food Science, School of Chemistry, Universidad Autónoma de Querétaro, Mexico
Dr. Gaytán-Martínez earned a master's degree in food science and technology at the Universidad Autonoma de Coahuila. Later, she completed a Ph.D. in advanced technology at the Instituto Politecnico Nacional. She is currently a Research Professor in the Graduate Program in Food at the Center of the Republic (PROPAC), Research and Graduate Studies in Food Science, School of Chemistry, Universidad Autonoma de Querétaro. Dr. Gaytán-Martínez is recognized as a National System of Researchers (Level 1) and PRODEP profile. She teaches and researches in the food science and technology area and has experience in the development of food products using emerging technologies, innovation in product concept development, formulations and prototype from cereals. She has published more than 50 articles in high-impact journals, book chapters, human resources training (bachelor, master and doctorate) and intellectual property registration. She has also participated as a reviewer for journals in the food industry and in development of products/processes susceptible to technology transfer.
Ph.D., Director, Soybean Innovation Lab, University of Illinois, United States
Dr. Goldsmith is also a moderator for the session on Processor Challenges and Technical Opportunities in SSA.
Dr. Goldsmith graduated in 1995 from the Ohio State University with a PhD in Agricultural Economics and is currently a Professor of Agribusiness Management in the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, University of Illinois. In addition to his PhD, Dr. Goldsmith has received an MBA in Finance, and undergraduate degrees in Dairy Science and Political Science. He is a leading scholar within the field of Agribusiness Management and is a Fellow of the International Food and Agribusiness Management Association. Dr. Goldsmith developed the world’s first course on agrifood supply chain management and blockchain applications. Having worked extensively in Mato Grosso, Brazil and Argentina, he is one of the world’s leading soybean economists with unique expertise in low latitude soybean production and agro-industrial development. Dr. Goldsmith serves as the Director of USAID’s Feed the Future Lab for Soybean Value Chain Research, a $20m research enterprise that operates in 27 countries. Before embarking on a career in academia, Dr. Goldsmith worked in the dairy industry as the assistant general manager of a cooperative and as a herdsman; and as a large animal specialist in the United States Peace Corps in South America.
Executive Director, Goyum Screw Press, India
Rishab Goyal is a Mechanical engineer by education and agile businessman by nature. Mr. Goyal has been working with the Goyum group since 2013 and managing the sales and marketing part for the Global market.
Ph.D., Director, CFAM technologies Pty. Ltd., South Africa
LJ Grobler is Director and Founder of CFAM Technologies Pty Ltd. He started in 1998 with the development and localization of a twin screw extruder for Africa. CFAM Technologies was founded in 2007 and is today still the only manufacturer of twin screw food extruders in Africa. CFAM's extruders are in operation on four continents. LJ Grobler is also Professor in Mechanical Engineering at the North-West University (NWU). He focus his research on extrusion, advanced manufacturing and energy. During 2007/8 he was the President of the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE) based in Atlanta, USA and was the first non-American to become president. He founded the Southern African Association for Energy Efficiency (SAEE) in 2002 and was board member of the SAEE from 2002 till 2012. In 2016 he was inducted into the AEE Hall of Fame. He is registered as a professional engineer (Pr Eng) with the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) since 1995 and received his Ph.D. at the University of Pretoria, South Africa also in 1995. Prof. LJ Grobler received the Lifetime Achievement Award during the eta Awards 2010 in South Africa for his extensive involvement in energy efficiency through measurement and verification.
Executive Director, World Initiative for Soybean in Human Health (WISHH), United States
While no one predicted a year like 2020, visionary U.S. soybean growers did anticipate a powerful role for soy to fill protein gaps in emerging and developing markets. Today, Liz Hare leads the now 20-year-old organization that U.S. soybean farmers established to connect trade and development across global market systems, improving food security. Hare connected with the American Soybean Association’s World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (WISHH) program while working and living in Central America where she executed development programs that had also validated the importance of soy protein for nutrition. WISHH recruited her to lead its programs in Central America and Pakistan before tapping her to take the reins of the organization as executive director in 2018. Prior to joining WISHH, Liz also served as a policy assistant in a U.S. Senate office on Capitol Hill. Liz received her bachelor’s degree in International Studies and Psychology from Saint Louis University and holds a dual master’s in Development Management and Policy from Georgetown University and the Universidad Nacional de San Martín in Argentina. As a mother of three as well as WISHH’s executive director, Liz is professionally and personally committed to harnessing the power of protein to improve lives and economic opportunities worldwide.
Manager TCS Consumer, W.R. Grace & Co., Germany
Massoud Jalalpoor was born in Tehran/Iran in 1958. Upon completing his high school education, he emigrated to Germany in 1979 and graduated as a Registered Food Chemist at the Technical University of Berlin. Massoud has been the Technical Customer Service Manager for GRACE for the past 30 years, technically supporting a number of GRACE’s food, dentifrice and beverage silica product lines. He is based at Grace’s European headquarters in Worms, Germany. Massoud’s responsibilities include supporting the TriSyl® product lines for edible oil/fat refining and biofuel applications. He was involved with commercialization of silica refining in the late 1980’s and he was closely involved in the development of various tools such as ‘adsorption optimization guidelines’, ‘dosage tables’, and ‘economic models’ based on adsorptive purification processes. Recently Massoud developed the more environmentally friendly “TriSyl® Tri-Clear” process. This process significantly reduces the refiner’s adsorbent dosage levels and associated filter cake quantity which minimizes oil losses and improves final oil/fat quality. The TriSyl® Tri-Clear technologies that Grace helped to develop have become industry standards and are offered by several engineering houses.
Deputy Chief of Party, Kenya Investment Mechanism (KIM), Kenya
John Kashangaki is the Deputy Chief of Party for USAID’s Kenya Investment Mechanism, implemented by The Palladium Group. John has over 20 years of experience in private sector development, with a key focus in market research/business planning for projects and enterprises in East Africa. At USAID’s Kenya Investment Mechanism, John leads the Opportunities team, which prioritizes policies for stakeholders and builds the capacity of business advisory service providers to facilitate finance and investment into the targeted value chains at scale. He has an MPA International Development from Princeton University.
Ph.D., Assistant Professor (Sustainable Food Systems Engineering), Department of Biomedical, Biological & Chemical Engineering, Division of Food Systems and Bioengineering (Food Science and Nutrition), University of Missouri, Columbia, USA
Dr. Krishnaswamy, is a Pillars of Pursuit – Food Sustainability joint hire, College of Engineering (CoE) and College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR) at the University of Missouri. Krishnaswamy started her research program- Food Engineering and Sustainable Technologies (www.feastlab.org) during Fall 2018. FEAST is a multidisciplinary group of scientist, engineers and researchers applying sustainable food process engineering tools for value added food processing and food fortification to address Hidden Hunger – micronutrient deficiency (an interconnected challenge of food and nutrition security). Her unique skillset is integrating sustainable food systems engineering: connecting upcycling of food loss/waste, micronutrient food fortification (vitamins & minerals) and innovative micro/nanoencapsulation systems to deliver micronutrients via food.
Ph.D., post-doctoral studies, Wageningen University and Research, Netherlands
Dr. Konstantina Kyriakopoulou studied chemical engineering at the National Technical University of Athens, Greece, where she also completed her PhD studies. In 2017, she joined the Food Process Engineering Group of Wageningen University as a postdoc researcher. Her research involves the sustainable fractionation of natural products for the recovery of functional and bioactive food ingredients. Her main focus is on plant-based proteins, understanding their functionality and exploring their structuring potential for the formulation of the next generation of meat analogues.
Juan Andrade Laborde
Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of Florida, United States
Dr. Laborde is also a moderator for the session on Quality, Safety and Packaging.
Juan E. Andrade Laborde is an associate professor of global food and nutrition at the University of Florida (UF) in Gainesville. He holds a B.Sc. in Agricultural Sciences from Zamorano University, Honduras, and a Ph.D. in Human Nutrition from Purdue University. Dr. Andrade's long-term goal is to develop sustainable strategies that can be used to deliver adequate nutrition, especially micronutrients, to residents of low-resource countries and thereby help to promote human health and economic development. His research interests are focused on innovative concepts for food fortification, point-of-use sensing technologies for micronutrients in fortified foods, reformulation of relief food products, and service, experiential learning education programs. Dr. Andrade Laborde is an affiliated faculty in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, the Food Systems Institute, the Center for Latin American Studies and the Center for African Studies at UF. He is also a research affiliate at the USAID’s Livestock Innovation Lab (LSIL – hosted at UF) and the PI of the Human Nutrition Team at the USAID’s Soybean Innovation Lab (SIL – hosted at Illinois). Dr. Andrade Laborde is a member of the American Oil Chemists’ Society, the Institute of Food Technologists, and the American Society for Nutrition.
Co-Founder and Principal, Prosparity Systems, United States
Eric Lane is Co-Founder and Principal of Prosparity Systems, a project to develop a low-cost, multi-purpose, all-terrain farm vehicle for sub-Saharan Africa. Eric leads business and project management and informs vehicle development in collaboration with advising experts at the forefront of developing region small-scale mechanization. Prior to Prosparity, Eric conducted technical research, communications and advised strategy for Edison2, a hyper-efficient vehicle project now in the Henry Ford Museum.
Prosparity was co-founded with Ron Mathis, Edison2’s Chief of Engineering, on the principal of applying world-class engineering to sub-Saharan challenges in transport and food production. After Mr. Mathis died in a tragic accident, Eric rebuilt the project with partner Korres Engineering, developer of the world’s first all-terrain supercar. The project is currently positioned to complete development and build vehicles for evaluation in destination countries.
Ph.D., Research Chemist, U.S. Department of Agricultural, United States
Keshun Liu, Ph.D. is a Research Chemist with United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS). Born in rural China, he received M.S and Ph.D. degrees in Food Science from Michigan State University (USA) in 1989 and did post-doctoral work at Coca-Cola Co. and University of Georgia (USA) thereafter. Prior to joining USDA-ARS in 2005, he was employed at Monsanto Co. and University of Missouri. Dr. Liu’s expertise in chemistry, processing, and value-added utilization of soybeans has spanned over 35 years of his research career at academic institutions, private industry and governmental agency. Over the years, Dr. Liu authored or co-authored 137 publications, co-organized 6 international conferences, organized/co-organized 52 symposia for scientific meetings, and gave 110 technical presentations to domestic and international audiences. In addition, he wrote, edited or co-edited four English reference books, including two on soybeans: “Soybeans as functional foods and ingredients” (2005, AOCS Press) and “Soybeans chemistry, technology and utilization” (Chapman & Hall, 1997). For his scientific achievements and contributions, he received several prestigious awards, including American Oil Chemists Society (AOCS) Award of Merit (2010), AOCS fellow (2011), Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) fellow (2014), and AOCS Protein & Co-Products Division Lifetime Achievement Award (2020).
Ph.D., Professor and Research Chair, University of Guelph, Canada
Alejandro Marangoni is a Professor and Tier I Canada Research Chair in Food, Health and Aging at the University of Guelph, Canada. His work concentrates on the physical properties of soft materials in foods, cosmetics and biolubricants. A prolific scientist with over 400 research papers, 85 book chapters, 13 books and 40 patents to his name, he is the recipient of many scientific awards throughout the world. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (The National Academy of Sciences), the American Oil Chemists’ Society, the Institute of Food Technologists and the Royal Society of Chemistry (U.K.). He is the Editor in Chief of Current Opinion in Food Science and Current Research in Food Science. Marangoni was honored as one of the 10 most influential Hispanic Canadians in 2012.
Ph.D, Associate Professor, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUNAR)
Kingsley Masamba is a food scientist by profession and is currently an associate professor in food science and technology at Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources in the department of Food Science and Technology where he is also the head of department. Kingsley Masamba holds a Master’s degree in food technology obtained from the University of Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia in 2007 and a doctorate degree in food science and technology obtained in 2016 from Jiangnan University, People’s Republic of China. Over the years, apart from his teaching and research work, he has actively been involved in a number of outreach activities working in government initiated agro-processing activities such as the defunct One Village One Product Programme where he was the national trainer for cooperatives involved in agro-processing. He has also been involved in providing trainings in food processing related areas to food processors in Malawi at various levels. He is currently involved in training of cooperatives involved in value addition in areas such as product development, quality control and assurance under the Ministry of Industry as well as monitoring and providing technical support to cooperatives under the certification schemes by Malawi Bureau of Standards.
Ph.D., Lecturer, Department of Food Technology and Nutrition, Makerere University, Uganda
Dr. Robert Mugabi holds a PhD in Food Science and Technology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Nebraska, USA, and an MEngSc Food Process Engineering, from the University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia. Currently, he is a Lecturer at the Department of Food Technology and Nutrition, Makerere University. His areas of expertise include food safety, better process control, extrusion technology, post-harvest loss prevention and food product development. He is a member of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) and Institute of Food Technologists (IFT).
Mugabi has 9-years’ experience in teaching, research, and consultancy. He has supervised students with research in both Food Science and Nutrition. He has partnered with researchers and consultants on assignments in areas of food processing, food engineering, value-addition, post-harvest, and food quality. Mugabi’s current efforts are centered on dissemination of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), post handling practices, production process improvement, and developing food safety policies. He has active collaborations with industry focused on meeting required food safety standards and understanding the relationship between food safety and Nutrition.
Ph.D., Lecturer, LUANAR
Ronnie Mvula is a Lecturer at Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources in the Department of Agribusiness Management. His areas of interest include Marketing, Human Resource Management, Entrepreneurship, Policy analysis Strategy and Organizational behavior.
Health and Nutrition Advisor, Nascent Solutions, Malawi
Susan Mwafulirwa is a Malawian, born in 1969. She is a Nutritionist and Public Health Specialist. She has worked in the field of nutrition and health for over 15 years in both government and the private sector. She has contributed to the review of training materials, guidelines and nutrition related policies and strategies. She is a member of different TWGs such as micronutrients and nutrition sensitive agriculture under the National Nutrition Coordinating Committee. Susan is a trainer a counselor and a teacher. She has trained different communities on health food choices and diet. She managed programs to develop community specific recipes using locally available foods. She assists communities in childcare and child feeding. She loves when she sees the positive impact from her contribution. Her goal is for all rural communities in Malawi to become food and nutrition secure while consuming healthy diets form their own food stores. She advocates that all stakeholders in Nutrition (donors, implementers, policy holders) should focus on addressing the root cause of malnutrition and poor health rather that concentrating on treatments and management of cases. The solution exists, the human, and other resources are there. Her moto is "Just do it!"
Ph.D., Programme Leader, Food Biosciences and Agribusiness Programme, Uganda
Kephas Nowakunda is the Program Leader of The Food Biosciences and Agribusiness Research Program within the National Agricultural Research Laboratories - Kawanda, a research institute of the National Agricultural Research Organization of Uganda. As a Program Leader he leads research on food quality and safety, post-harvest physiology and management, food products development and marketing. Kephas has over twenty years of experience in research and development work with expertise in food quality assessments and value chain innovations. He holds a PhD in Food Processing from the National University of Ireland, Cork, an MSc Science in Crop Post-harvest Technology and a Bachelor of Food Science and Technology from Makerere University, Uganda.
Ph.D., RD(SA), Professor of Nutritional Sciences, Texas Tech University, United States
Dr. Wilna Oldewage-Theron PhD RD(SA) is a Professor of Nutrition in the College of Human Sciences at Texas Tech University. She has twenty years Community Nutrition research experience in Africa and is a National Research Foundation (NRF)-rated researcher in South Africa (SA). Her research interests include the factors contributing to household food insecurity and malnutrition in resource-poor communities where she has investigated the effect of various interventions, such as food fortification, supplementation, nutrition education, food product development and implementation, as well as school feeding programs on food insecurity, dietary diversity and nutritional status of women, children and seniors. Her community research and development program at present is mainly focused on the double burden of disease (micronutrient deficiencies and lifestyle diseases) among women, children and seniors. During 2016, 2017 and 2018, she was a consultant for WISHH facilitating a USDA Cochran workshop on school feeding programs for delegates from various African and South American countries. She has also been involved in impact studies for the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (SA), Joint Aid Management, the United States Potato Board, and the World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (USA).
Professor Hon. Ruth Oniang’o
Ph.D., Founder, Rural Outreach Africa, Kenya
Ruth Oniang’o is a scholar, researcher, food and nutrition scientist, African Food Prize Laureate and holder of Kenya’s Silver Star and Distinguished Service Medals, and serves on several international and national bodies associated with food systems research and programs. Ruth founded Rural Outreach Africa (ROA) in the early 1990s. ROA works in western Kenya, harnessing the intellectual resources of universities in Kenya and connecting them to communities, to improve the livelihoods of the rural poor. She serves as an international consultant and speaker. As the founder editor of the African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development (AJFAND), Ruth seeks to improve policy and decision-making dissemination of significant scientific findings and emerging technologies in the field. The journal provides opportunity for African scholars in agriculture, nutrition and environment to share their knowledge and research findings. As a Kenyan Parliamentarian for 5 years (2003-2007) and Shadow Minister for Education, Science and Technology and Vice Chair of Women Parliamentarians, she supported Science, Technology, innovation and gender equity. She is a staunch supporter of women in science, and takes time to mentor young scholars in her field, both male and female. Of late she has been very much involved with COVID issues, especially as it relates to human nutrition, health and sanitation. All her professional life, she has focused on fighting hunger, malnutrition and poverty. She ensured ”Right to adequate Food” was included in the Kenya Constitution 2010, and is now addressing its implementation. Currently she supports job creation in the agri-sector.
Richard W. Ozer
Crown Iron Works, United States
Richard Ozer is Technical Sales Manager for Specialty Products at Crown Iron Works. Richard joined Crown in 1997 and since then has been involved in applying Crown’s existing Solvent Extractors in new applications. Examples include: Soy Protein Concentrate for Aquafeeds, Desolventizing Palm Kernel, washing polymers, Food Grade Citrus Fibers and more.
Global Sales Director, Oilseeds, Solex Thermal Science, Czech Republic
For nearly a decade, Stan has played an integral role in championing Solex’s efforts within the world’s oilseeds market. Initially focused on canola applications in Canada, he moved to Europe in 2016 where he led the company’s expansion into applications such as rapeseed and sunflower. As global director of oilseeds, Stan is now focused on applying indirect plate heat transfer technology to new regions, as well as developing more robust conditioning, cooling, and heat-recovery solutions throughout the oilseeds processing steps.
Senior Research Specialist, University of Missouri, United States
Liz Prenger is a Senior Research Specialist with Dr. Andrew Scaboo’s soybean breeding and genetics research program at the University of Missouri (MU). She worked for the MU soybean breeding program as an undergraduate until graduating with a Bachelors degree in Plant Sciences. She then earned a Master of Science degree in soybean breeding and genetics from the University of Georgia, where her research focused on the genetics of soybean seed composition. Liz returned to Missouri and the MU soybean breeding program in 2019. She is currently responsible for managing the analytical chemistry lab (high performance liquid chromatography and gas chromatography), managing data analysis for the program, and managing the near infrared spectroscopy lab.
Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Dr. Andrew Scaboo is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Plant Sciences at the University of Missouri located in Columbia, MO. He was born and raised on the east coast of the US in Salisbury, Maryland. From there, he traveled to the University of Tennessee for both his Bachelor’s degree and his Master of Science degree in plant sciences and breeding. He continued his higher education at The University of Arkansas where he received his PhD during the spring of 2011. After a yearlong post-doctoral position at the USDA-ARS in Raleigh, NC, Dr Scaboo started at his position at the University of Missouri, where he leads the soybean breeding and genetics research team in Columbia, MO. During the past 6 years, Dr. Scaboo has released many soybean varieties and germplasm lines, and these releases are currently grown by farmers and/or licensed to private companies for use in their breeding programs. Dr. Scaboo has co-authored refereed journal articles and two book chapters and is currently involved in numerous state, regional, national, and international collaborative research projects concerning soybean breeding. His research is largely focuses on improving soybean breeding for variety development, genetic diversity, disease resistance, and improved seed compositional traits.
Technical Sales Support, Desmet Ballestra, Belgium
Master in agrochemical engineering KUL 1986. After 5 years working in edible oil refining plants in Europe as a project manager, I worked 5 years in process optimization in fractionation specialty plant. I have joined Desmet ballestra in 1998 as a process engineer. After some years of product management, I was engineering manager for the refining and modification department. Recently I moved to Group Sales support.
Chief of Party, USAID's Alliance for Inclusive and Nutritious Food Processing (AINFP), TechnoServe, United States
Jonathan is the Chief of Party with TechnoServe on the USAID-funded Alliance for Inclusive and Nutritious Food Processing (AINFP) program based in Nairobi, Kenya, and was previously the CoP on the Solutions for African Food Enterprises (SAFE) program. Both these programs aim to improve the competitiveness of SME food processors across 5 countries to produce safe, nutritious and affordable foods. Jonathan has extensive experience across East and Southern Africa over the last 25 years leading programs in sustainable livelihoods, value chains and agricultural market systems for a range of British and Irish development agencies. He has a Masters’ degree in Land and Water Management and a Bachelor’s degree in Agriculture.
Director, Food Processing and Nutrition, Jonathan Thomas, Chief of Party, USAID's Alliance for Incuslive and Nutritious Food Processing (AINFP), TechnoServe, United States
Brent is the global director of TechnoServe’s Food Processing platform, supporting and developing programs that build the capacity of food processing companies as critical intermediaries in the food system.
Brent has over 25 years of experience working in African agriculture and food processing industries. He was Chief of Party for the African Alliance for Improved Food Processing program (AAIFP), as well as Solutions for African Food Processors (SAFE), prior to TechnoServe he ran the operations for Homegrown, one of Africa’s largest vertically integrated horticultural export companies. Brent is now based in NY and has a Masters in Food, Society and International Food Governance.
Ph.D., Owner, Wilmot Consulting Services, United States
Wilmot Wijeratne, Ph.D., CFS, has fifteen years in Research/Development and technical services working to expand utilization of soy protein and pulse products in the Non-GMO and non-solvent space, and in food product/process development, scale up and commercialization. He has five years experience in grain legumes food plant development and five years in hands-on in food manufacturing operations. His has a specialization in non-conventional technology for soybean processing for human food and knowledge and experience in current good manufacturing practices in food processing. He has ten years in technical support to sales/marketing of food grain processing equipment and twelve years of University experience with roles in applied research, international food technology training and technology transfer focused on soybean foods. His expertise encompasses grant writing, project development and implementation in academia and private sector; organization and conduct of international training programs in soybean processing; and technical writing. Wilmot Wijeratne has provided technology transfer, consulting services, seminars and conferences in 14 countries of Asia, Africa, Central/South America, and independent states of the former Soviet Union. His professional affiliations include: Institute of Food Technologists (IFT); American Oil Chemists Society (AOCS)
P.E., Director of Engineering, ADF Engineering, United States
Matt Williamson is the Director of Engineering at ADF Engineering and has been with ADF for 12 years, where he has focused on oilseeds, corn milling and the food industry. Matt is a Process/Chemical Engineer with a degree from the University of Kentucky. Prior to ADF, Matt worked for Procter & Gamble and has over 32 years of experience in the food & feed, surfactant and petrochemical industries.
Meet the Moderators
Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Florida, United States
In the Fall of 2018, Dr. Andrade joined the FSHN department as an assistant professor and the masters in dietetic internship Director. She completed her PhD at the University of Illinois at the College of Education in the Department of Human Resource Education with a specialty in evaluation. Her research focuses on effective nutrition education strategies to improve health outcomes among adults. An additional focus is the impact foods have on adults with renal disease.
Ph.D., Director, Technical Services, American Oil Chemists’ Society (AOCS), United States
Scott Bloomer started his research career in 1973 in the laboratories of Honeywell, Incorporated doing research in humidity sensors. Since then he has been privileged to do research on smoke detectors, biosensors, enzymatic interesterification of lipids, basic oilseed processing, and the application of enzymes to milk compounds. He has written a dozen peer-reviewed papers and is a contributing editor for the AOCS trade magazine, INFORM. Bloomer managed the fats and oils portfolio of ADM for several years, drafting and defending patents. He is currently the Director of Technical Services at the American Oil Chemists’ Society.
Ph.D., Senior Expert, Societe' des Produids Nestlé, Switzerland
Fabiola Dionisi holds an MSc in Food Science and Technology, an MSc in Nutritional Medicine and a PhD in Food Biotechnologies. After two years spent in R&D for the cosmetic industry she joined Nestlé in 1994 where she has occupied positions as Group Leader, Department Head and Network Leader. As Lipid Senior Expert, Fabiola has contributed to the scientific content and the business impact of numerous R&D projects in Quality, Nutrition and Food Material Science. She is an AOCS board member and Chair of the Health & Nutrition Division.
Ph.D., CEO, American Oil Chemists’ Society (AOCS), United States
Patrick Donnelly, Ph.D., CAE joined AOCS (American Oil Chemists’ Society) as its Chief Executive Officer in 2012. Prior to this Dr. Donnelly worked for over 20 years with, and for, major technology providers in the agricultural sector to advance science and regulatory policy. He began his career in Washington, DC as a Congressional Science Fellow working for the Agriculture Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, and later served on the staff of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry. Dr. Donnelly is a Certified Association Executive (CAE) and holds an M.S. and Ph.D. in Reproductive Physiology from West Virginia University. He completed his undergraduate work in Resource Development majoring in animal science at the University of Rhode Island.
PharmD, Ph.D., Senior Science Advisor, USAID/Bureau for Resilience and Food Security/Center for Nutrition/Food Safety Division, United States
Dr. Kablan is a Senior Science Advisor with the Food Safety Division/Nutrition Center at the Bureau for Resilience and Food Security. Dr. Kablan manages several research programs in the area of Safe, Nutritious Foods. Dr. Kablan leads the Bureau for Resilience and Food Security (RFS) efforts on food safety and nutrition research & co-chair the Interagency Food Safety Working Group, manages the Golden Rice project, and is a member of the RFS Research Community of Practice. Dr. Kablan has wide technical expertise in nutrition, nutrition-related noncommunicable diseases, double burden of malnutrition, metabolic syndrome food safety & foodborne toxins, microbiome & public health. Dr. Kablan has a degree in Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) from Jordan University of Science and Technology & a PhD in Biotechnology from the University of Bologna/Italy. Dr. Kablan has over 20 years of research, teaching, programming and policy experience in human nutrition, food safety, international development, science policy. Prior to joining USAID, Dr. Kablan was a researcher at the National Institutes of Health, University of Toledo/college of medicine and an assistant professor of biotechnology at the University of Jordan. His research focused on metabolic syndrome and malnutrition.
Retired Senior Vice President, Food Research and Development, ADM, United States
Mark joined ADM in 1980, where he developed an analytical instrument to measure vegetable oil stability (OSI) that is widely used today. He has conducted enzymatic research leading to new soy protein ingredients and managed research that led to trans free fats via an enzymatic interesterification technology. Mark Matlock is a past-president of the American Oil Chemists’ Society and AOCS Fellow. He retired from ADM in 2019 as Sr. Vice President Food Research.
Director, Refined Oils Operations, Ag Processing, Inc., United States
Ph.D., University Research Chair and Associate Professor, Nutrition Sciences, University of Ottawa, Canada
Chibuike Udenigwe holds the University Research Chair in Food Properties and Nutrient Bioavailability at the School of Nutrition Sciences, and a cross-appointment in the Department of Chemistry and Biomolecular Sciences, University of Ottawa, Canada. His research focuses on the chemistry and nutritional qualities of food proteins, and their beneficial properties related to health and wellness. His work also includes food diversification, emerging food technologies, value-added processing, alternative proteins, and plant-based foods. Dr. Udenigwe has published over 150 journal articles and book chapters. He obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Manitoba, and was a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Guelph. Dr. Udenigwe was a Carnegie African Diaspora Fellow. He currently serves as Editor for Food Hydrocolloids for Health, Chair of the Protein and Co-products Division of the American Oil Chemists' Society (AOCS), and member of the International Union of Food Science and Technology (IUFoST) Taskforce on COVID-19 and the Global Food System. Dr. Udenigwe is the recipient of the 2018 American Chemical Society–Division of Agricultural and Food Chemistry Young Scientist Award, 2018 AOCS Young Scientist Research Award, and 2012 IUFoST Young Scientist Award.