Speakers of Future Food Forum 2021

H.E. Mariam Bint M. Al Mheiri


Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Almheiri is Minister of Climate Change and Environment of the UAE. In this capacity, she leads the Ministry’s mission of spearheading the UAE’s drive to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change, protect the country’s ecosystems, and enhance its food and water security through developing and implementing effective measures, policies, and initiatives. Prior to her current role, Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri was Minister of State for Food and Water Security. Her responsibilities included monitoring national food stocks and water supply, channeling investments in food and water technology innovation, and building international partnerships in this area. Previously, Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri held the post of Minister of State for Food Security, where she oversaw the development of the necessary infrastructure to achieve the country’s food security objectives in line with the UAE Centennial 2071. Earlier, she served as Assistant Undersecretary for Water Resources and Nature Conservation Affairs at the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE), where she headed the Biodiversity, Fisheries, Coastal & Marine Sustainability, and Marine Research Departments. Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri currently represents the UAE in the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the International Center for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA). She is a member of the Board of Directors of Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA) and the Boards of Trustees of Khalifa International Award for Date Palm and Agricultural Innovation, Dubai Future Foundation (DFF), and the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Food Systems Innovation. Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri received a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from RWTH Aachen University in Germany.

H.E. Abdulla Al Shamsi

Assistant Undersecretary Industry Growth Sector, MINISTRY OF INDUSTRY & ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY, UAE

Abdullah Alshamsi is Assistant Undersecretary, Industry Growth, at the Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology (MOIAT).

Abdulla has numerous professional achievements during his career, such as establishing Mohammed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence, leading negotiations and finalization of a US$ 350 bln acquisition transaction in Russia, managing Shell Oil, Gas, and Petrochemical assets in the Middle East.

Prior to joining MOIAT, Alshamsi held the position of Senior Vice President of Upstream Projects at Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and at Mubadala Investment Company, he held the position of Investment manager leading merger and acquisition transactions related to oil and gas in addition to working in Strategy and Asset Management at Shell where he held several positions in engineering and economic analysis in Netherlands, Britain and Sultanate of Oman. Through his accumulated experience in the public and private sectors, Alshamsi will lead a package of programs, policies and initiatives to support and enable the growth of the national industry, enhance its contribution to the national economy, diversify the economy, and increase local content.

Alshamsi is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and holds a Master’s degree of Public Administration in Economics and Economic policies from Columbia University in New York and a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from McMaster University in Canada.

Prof. Hussein Mansour


Dr. Hussein Mansour is currently, the first chairman of the Board of directors of National Food Safety Authority that established in Egypt since 28th of July, 2017. Dr. Mansour promulgate and embraced the idea of changing food safety systems in Egypt and the establishment of a national authority for food safety since 2003. He leads the project that officially began in 2007. He served as the Agricultural Minister Plenipotentiary & Head of the Agricultural Office at the Embassy of Egypt in Washington, DC. for 6 years. Dr. Mansour has over 40 years of experience as an agricultural scientist. Former dean of Agriculture College at Ain Shams University, research management coordinator, and educator in Egyptian and Middle Eastern institutions (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Syria and UAE). He has a broad experience in international agricultural development programs through his engagements with CODEX, SAID, FAO, CARDA, ACSAD and number of other international organizations. In 2016 he was elected as the chairman of Arab Food System Experts. Dr. Mansour has organized and chaired many international workshops and conferences on agricultural development, genetic diversity and animal conservation. He has served as the technical leader on several nation-wide animal genetic improvement projects in the Middle East. In addition, he assisted in the establishment of the Egyptian National Agricultural Library (ENAL). He also established a number of information and computing laboratories in the Egyptian Universities and Ministry of Agriculture. Dr Mansour is one of ten scientists who contributed to the formation of the Arab Science and Technology Foundation (ASTF) in Sharjah, UAE. Dr Mansour is originator of adapting the concept of Milk HUB in Egypt. He has over 50 scientific publications in peer reviewed international and Egyptian journals, and the author of five books in Agriculture and Food legislations. He supervised the academic process of ten PhDs and thirty-one M.S graduates.

H.E. Essa Abdulla Al Ghurair


H.E Essa Abdulla Al Ghurair is one of the leading business entrepreneurs in the region due to his extensive experience in industrial manufacturing and commodities trading in international markets. His vision and business strategies have resulted in the growth of various companies e.g. Dubai Oil Mills (one of the largest canola and soya crushing plants in the MENA region), National Flour Mills and Al Ghurair Resources, which is one of the largest business entities in the greater Al Ghurair Family and a major supplier in the field of agricultural commodities. H.E. Essa Abdulla Al Ghurair, Chairman of Essa Al Ghurair Investment, also serves as the General Manager of Karam Foods Industries.In addition, Mr. Essa Al Ghurair is a major shareholder in Prime HealthCare Group, one of the leading healthcare providers in the UAE, which aims to be the most respected healthcare provider in the region

Saleh Lootah


With comprehensive experience across the board in various capacities within diverse companies ranging from start-ups to leading companies into transformation & into international boundaries, Saleh Lootah, an innovative and result driven leader is a UAE national and currently holds the following positions, Chairman of Food & Beverage Manufacturing Business group, MD of Al Islami Foods, Founding Director of Souq Extra, Chairman of AlFarooj Restaurant, Board Member of Aman Insurance Graduating with a Master’s degree in Business Administration from USA in addition to attending the General Management Program & Agribusiness from Harvard Business School, Mr. Saleh Lootah has also been a part of the Leadership program from IMD University. His passion and drive for excellence has led him to receive various awards at both the international & regional arena. Major role was his contribution in applying the EFQM Model of Excellence at Al Islami Foods which led the company to receive the Dubai Quality Award in 2003, the first ever food company then to win such an award. As an avid contributor to the Food & Beverage industry, Mr. Saleh Lootah has attended the Agribusiness Seminar at Harvard Business School - USA and India in 2004 and 2009 respectively sharing ideas and experiences with various international business leaders.

Alan Smith


Alan Smith is the Chief Executive Officer of Agthia Group PJSC. Established in 2004, Agthia is listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange and is part of Agthia Group PJSC ADQ, one of the region’s largest holding companies with a broad portfolio of major enterprises spanning key sectors of Abu Dhabi’s diversified economy. Agthia offers a world class portfolio of integrated businesses encompassing categories such as Water, Snacking, Processed Protein, Grocery, Flour and Feed; spread across the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Egypt, Turkey and Jordan. Prior to his appointment as CEO of Agthia in July 2020, Alan has helmed various roles at Mondelez International; the most recent one being Managing Director – Middle East & Pakistan. Alan brings over 20 years of encompassing FMCG experience with a focus on opening new markets and transforming underperforming operations. He also has strong cross functional experience having led strategic initiatives, business turnarounds, manufacturing build outs and multi-country operations as a business leader. Alan holds an Executive Masters in Marketing from INSEAD and a Bachelor of Engineering (Mechanical) from Manchester University.

Ahmed Bayoumi


Ahmed Bayoumi, whose three-decade-long professional career includes holding key management leadership positions in Procter & Gamble, PepsiCo, Mars and Americana, was appointed as the CEO of Global Food Industries (GFI) and International Beverage and Filling Industries (IBFI) in February 2020. Bayoumi holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the American University in Cairo and a Master’s Degree in Economics from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden. Since assuming the role in February 2020, he is mainly responsible for taking GFI and IBFI’s aspirations to new highs and double the company’s business over the next 5 years. Bayoumi also heads a new management team and works closely with them to achieve the company’s objectives.

Dr Sami Carouba

President and CEO, REACH MEA

President & CEO of REACH MEA. 25 years of progressive cross-functional leadership experience with regional and multinational companies including Unilever, Henkel and SC Johnson, with a passion for building and promoting brands and driving profitable growth, with a wealth of knowledge across the Middle East and African Markets. Catalyst for Change who revives underperforming markets, penetrates new ones, and expands existing business with demonstrated ability to establish, nurture, and maintain productive relationship at all levels.

Andrew Taylor

President Growth Markets, TATE & LYLE

Andrew Taylor is President of Growth Markets at Tate & Lyle, one of the world’s leading food ingredient solutions providers. Based in Singapore, Andrew leads Tate & Lyle’s businesses in the rapidly evolving markets of Asia Pacific, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa. Prior to his current role Andrew was President of Innovation and Commercial Development (ICD) responsible for all innovation and product development across the company. Before joining Tate and Lyle, Andrew was a Senior Partner at The Boston Consulting Group and led the Global Innovation Practice Area, as well as the Process Industries Practice in North America.

Jehaina AlAli

Food Permits and Applied Nutrition Section Manager, Dubai Municipality

Manager in the Food Safety Department in Dubai Municipality. Currently managing the food safety and nutrition digital information and a lead in digitization of the food safety management system in Dubai. She works on programs to promote healthy food menus in Dubai’s food service businesses and in schools And a member of several committees that are involved in nutrition and food safety related initiatives, most significant of which is the organising committee of the Dubai International Food Safety Conference since 2016.

Miguel Machado Cruz


Ashutosh Srivastava

Segment Manager for Food & Beverage, ABB

Ashutosh works with business development in the horizontal value chain of the food and beverage sector, from sugar to agriculture, for ABB UAE at Motion. He has experties in Discrete Automation and Robotics with over all 17 years of experience. Ashutosh is Indian by nationality. He has been with ABB for 14 years and has held many local and regional management roles including Project Management, R&D, Operations and Sales with focus on automation related solutions such as robotics, PLC, motors and drives. Ashutosh is passionate about contributing to Smart Manufacturing, increasing efficiency, productivity and sustainability.

Kate Goodman

Business Unit President, Middle East, North Africa & Pakistan, MONDELEZ INTERNATIONAL

Kate Goodman is the Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan business unit President for Mondelez International. She is responsible for leading the growth of Mondelez International in these dynamic and emerging markets. Kate is based in Dubai and is a member of the Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa Leadership Team. Kate joined Mondelez from Kimberly-Clark, where she built a diverse and successful career over the past 24 years, holding senior leadership roles across many parts of the world. Most recently, Kate served as Vice President for Middle East & Africa (MEA) for Kimberly-Clark’s consumer business leading a strong growth agenda with brands such as Huggies®, Kotex® and Kleenex®. Prior to leading the MEA region for Kimberly-Clark, she was the Vice President and Managing Director for UK and Ireland and before that held General Management positions in South Africa and Vietnam. Throughout her career, Kate has held leadership roles in General Management, Finance, Sales and Strategy. She is an accomplished global leader having lived and worked in Australia, the United States, South East Asia, Africa, the United Kingdom and the Middle East. Kate is originally from Australia. She has earned an Executive MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management and a Bachelor of Accounting degree from the University of Technology in Sydney.

Sumeet Mathur


Sumeet Mathur is the Managing Director for FrieslandCampina’s Middle East and North Africa operations. Sumeet has been part of the FrieslandCampina family since 2010. Prior to taking over the leadership of FrieslandCampina’s Middle East business, Sumeet held the position of AMEA Regional Category Director. In his current role, Sumeet is in charge of implementing a strategic approach in line with the overall global vision of the company— which operates across the Arabian Peninsula in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait and Yemen, as well as the Levant; including Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan, and North Africa. Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia and Mauritania. Prior to his role as Regional Category Director for the Asia, Middle East and Africa (AMEA) markets, Sumeet served as Regional Marketing Director in the Middle East, wherein he was responsible for the strategic marketing of FrieslandCampina’s wide selection of regional dairy brands. Sumeet has an extensive background in the food industry having worked for (fourteen) years at Nestlé prior to his tenure at FrieslandCampina.

Jessy El Murr

Senior Journalist & Media Consultant, FORMER BBC AND SKY NEWS ARABIA

Jessy El Murr is a certified media trainer and a multilingual digital journalist who spent over 18 years writing and presenting political, military and digital news stories for international news outlets. A seasoned field journalist and former BBC and Sky News Arabia correspondent, El Murr has recently acquired several media consulting and training projects for government and private entities across GCC countries including the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, The United Arab Emirates and the State of Kuwait. In 2019, El Murr led the digital production team for a confidential government project under the auspices of the Ministry of Defense in Saudi Arabia. In her capacity as the head of digital media department, she was entrusted with leading the production of digital campaigns related to counterterrorism and combating youth extremism. During her time as a correspondent, El Murr specialized in military news coverage and filed several exclusive stories. In 2012, she was the first Arab female reporter to complete an embed with United States Armed Forces in Kandahar, Afghanistan reporting exclusively on the NATO troops withdrawal for SKY News Arabia. In 2014, El Murr filed another exclusive story covering the US Navy operations on board USS George H.W Bush (CVN 77), the American aircraft carrier which led the F-18 airstrikes against ISIS targets in Syria and Iraq. As a BBC reporter based in Washington DC, El Murr covered several major political and economic stories including the 2008 US presidential elections and the 2011 trial of former IMF managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn. In 2015, El Murr conceived, produced and presented Sky News Arabia’s first Live TV social media program “Taghreedat Al Sabah” highlighting the work of young Arab digital entrepreneurs. Her work on the segment helped Sky News Arabia pick up the Arab Social Media Influencers Summit Award held in Dubai in 2016.

Henrik Stamm Kristensen


Henrik Stamm Kristensen, founder of Blendhub, Portable Powder Blending (PPB) and Chemometric Brain, a Dane who has lived in Spain for almost 30 years, has spent his entire professional career in the agri-food sector. He was visionary to anticipate current challenges in the global food industry by developing the world’s first multilocalized network of food production hubs. In 1996 he founded his first company, Premium Ingredients, specialized in food ingredients for the food industry. The company evolved from manufacturing to a technology and services platform. With the patent and development of the first Portable Powder Blending unit in 2011 in India, Henrik merged the corporate and entrepreneurial learnings from different companies and technologies into Blendhub, the first multi-localized network of food production hubs, currently with portable factories in Spain, India, Mexico, Colombia and Thailand. He was also the driving force behind allfoodexperts®, a community of agri-food professionals and experts aiming at changing the current global food production model into a more sustainable one. He also founded Chemometric Brain as a proprietary software of Blendhub to digitize food quality control and in January 2020 Chemometric Brain separated into a completely independent organization due to significant interest from many organizations to adopt the technology into their own companies. Henrik has a degree in International Business by the Copenhagen Business School. His entire professional career has been linked to the agri-food sector.

Andrey Dvoychenkov

Managing Director, Arabian Peninsula & Pakistan, NIELSENIQ

Andrey leads Nielsen’s Arabian Peninsula and Pakistan sub-region, which includes Saudi Arabia, UAE, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait and Pakistan. He is based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. He is responsible for developing and implementing Nielsen's business strategy in continuously building on the organization's outstanding reputation for service and delivery to clients while maintaining its financial health and operational efficiency, to ensure sustainable and profitable growth. Previously, Andrey was Managing Director for Adriatic region for Nielsen’s Media and Connect businesses, based in Belgrade, Serbia. Andrey brings with him 18 years of leadership experience and knowledge of the market research industry. Andrey joined Nielsen in Russia to take on a client servicing role in the retail measurement business. Since then, he has held several roles with increasing leadership capacities and responsibilities for significant client relationships across multiple geographies including leading the analytics team across Russia and North Eastern Europe and as a key client global insights leader based in the UK in 2012. Andrey holds a bachelor’s degree in the faculty of economics, from Moscow State University of Economics, Statistics and Informatics (MESI).

Abdulla Bin Damithan

CEO & Managing Director, DP WORLD UAE & JAFZA

Abdulla Bin Damithan has been with DP World for almost 20 years since 2001. He is currently appointed as CEO & Managing Director, DP World UAE, CEO of Jafza in 2021. As part of his previous role as Chief Commercial Officer, DP World UAE, since 2017, Abdulla was responsible for all revenue generation activities, products and services offered across the portfolio, leading different aspects of the business including Ports & Terminals, Parks & Zones and Trade Enablement solutions. Abdulla is a recognised and accomplished leader in the maritime & logistics landscape within the Middle East with commercial success across these industries. An effective communicator with strong leadership, logical and analytical capabilities with focus on innovative, customer-centric & sustainable business models. Abdulla also sits on the Board of several DP World Ports & Terminals globally and is also an independent director in logistics ventures.

H.E. Rashed Abdulkarim Al Blooshi


A prominent economics thought leader and accomplished chief executive, His Excellency Rashed Abdulkarim Al Blooshi is the Undersecretary of the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED). In this capacity he oversees the top-level development and implementation of leading initiatives at the Department, with the ultimate goal of elevating the global competitiveness of Abu Dhabi’s business ecosystem.

H.E. Al Blooshi has an in-depth mastery of global economic trends, challenges, opportunities, and key drivers. This has been accumulated from his extensive experience in collaborating with local and international partners to make Abu Dhabi a more robust investor-friendly, innovation-friendly, and growth-friendly economic powerhouse. His approach of strengthening governmental and private sector synergies based on transparency and knowledge exchange have proved instrumental in propelling the emirate towards its vision of a diversified, knowledge-based economy.

H.E. Al Blooshi also currently serves as the Vice Chairman of the Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development, and the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority.

Among numerous accolades received for his contributions as an economic visionary, he has been honoured as a government and business pioneer through the Government CEO Excellence Award and the Arab Eagle Award for General Management.

H.E. Al Blooshi holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration from UAE University, and a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Information Systems from Benedict College in the United States. He actively shares his expertise in several leading institutions encompassing education, economics, and various other fields.

Saud Abu Al-Shawareb


Saud Abu Al-Shawareb is the Managing Director of Dubai Industrial City, the region’s leading industrial and logistics hub and member of TECOM Group. In this capacity, he spearheads the delivery of Dubai Industrial City’s vision to elevate Dubai into a global platform for innovative manufacturing and logistics, in line with the leadership’s vision of economic diversification for a sustainable future. Al-Shawareb oversees all aspects of the business, including facilities and operations, to ensure optimal performance. Furthermore, he is responsible for nurturing relationships with existing business partners and attracting new ones, determining Dubai Industrial City’s strategic direction, planning and implementation of long-term business strategies to develop the sector as Dubai becomes a major destination for local, regional and global manufacturing and logistics companies. During his long-standing tenure at the region’s leading industrial hub, Saud Abu Al-Shawareb has held various positions within Dubai Industrial City, notably serving as Executive Director of Partner Relations, Head of the Operations, and as Chief Operating Officer. Saud Abu Al-Shawareb has a master’s degree in Engineering Management from the University of Wollongong in Dubai and a BSc in Civil Engineering from the University of Sharjah.

Arda Cenk Tokbas

Managing Director, HDF FZCO

Arda Cenk Tokbas is the Founding Managing Director of HDF FZCO, the holding entity based in Dubai and formed in the year 2000 with a mission to make Pinar a well-known, trusted brand across the Middle East, North Africa and beyond, a Global brand. Tokbas is also the Founding Managing Director of Hadaf Foods Industries in Abu Dhabi, UAE, which regionally manages manufacturing investments of the Group in the region. Both HDF FZCO and Hadaf Foods Industries are subsidiaries of Yasar Holding, who owns Pinar, the leading Turkish food and beverage brand. With over 25 years of international business experience within the FMCG industry, Tokbas’ expertise has been instrumentally leveraged across the Group’s greenfield projects, production, sales, marketing, distribution, export-import and other international business operations. As an engaged leader with an eye for entrepreneurship, Tokbas has spearheaded many landmark projects. Most recently, under his leadership, the Group launched the first processed cheese factory of the UAE, the brand’s first production facility outside Turkey. The state of the art facility houses the latest highly digitized manufacturing technology and covers 20,000 sq with an initial production capacity of 30,000 tons of cheese. Tokbas is the GCC Network Coordinator of TUSIAD, (Turkish Industrialists & Business People Association) and a founding member of Turkish Business Council in Dubai and Northern Emirates. He is also a congress member of Galatasaray SK. Tokbas has been part of the judging panel at the Effie Awards and also speaker across the FMCG industry and trade events, conferences and think tanks. As a passionate runner, Tokbas has completed several marathons running for charity. A keen believer in the societal impact of individuals and corporations, he holds a focus on contribution to community and social causes at the heart of his personal and professional ethos. Tokbas is a graduate of Civil Engineering at Bogazici University in Is

Paul Epperson

Vice President, Global Chief Commercial Officer-Manufacturing, GE DIGITAL

He is responsible for leading the global commercial and strategic growth initiatives for the direct/enterprise sellers, channel sales, pre-sales solution architects, and inside sales for the GE Digital Manufacturing Group. He brings over 30 years of software, system integration, program management, manufacturing, consulting, solution architect, and sales management experience across multiple industries.  In addition, Paul has 20+ years of experience with GE Digital serving in several different roles from his first role with GE Fanuc as a Field Service Engineer all the way through roles such as Program Manager, Product Specialists, Solution Architect Manager, Regional Sales Manager, and Americas Commercial Leader. Besides working at GE, he has career stops with Cooper Tire & Rubber Company, two different system integrators in sales and leadership roles, Lectra as the VP of Sales North America role, and 2 years working as the VP of Sales & Marketing role for a Private Equity firm. Paul holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Tri-State/Trine University,.  In addition, he has participated in numerous leadership, sales, and technical training programs throughout his career, including Six Sigma Training (Green Belt Certified), Lean Six Sigma methodologies, value selling, and completion of GE Crotonville Leadership courses.

Ahmad Belyouha


He is the Chairman of Emirates Macaroni Factory (which has pioneered the production of pasta in the Middle East since 1979) and Ibra Foods. He actively supports upcoming UAE entrepreneurs through TEJAR Dubai, and has also played a major role in the development of infrastructure in UAE through their engineering and consulting firm since 1975.

Grazielle Parenti

Global VP Corporate Affairs, Reputation and Sustainability, BRF

Grazielle has more than 28 years of experience and high representation in the Food Industry, having worked at Diageo and Mondelez. Graduated in Business Administration from Fundação Getúlio Vargas (“FGV”), she has an MBA with an emphasis in Marketing at FIA/USP and a postgraduate degree in Public Policy at FGV. Currently, she also holds the position of Chairman of the Board of ABIA - Brazilian Association of the Food Industry, president of the BRF Institute and acts as member of the Board of Directors of several class associations and business foruns. Nowadays, she leads an international team across Asia, Middle East, Europe, Africa and Americas responsible for government affairs, reputation, sustainability and ESG agenda. Also very committed to the Diversity& Inclusion agenda she is the chair of the Brazilian Chapter of the BRICS Woman Business Alliance and other national and international initiatives.

Khalid Saleh

Executive Vice President, YOKOGAWA MIDDLE EAST & AFRICA

Khalid has been a stellar member of the organisation, driving its growth and success. Khalid leads the Life Business that includes food and beverage, pharmaceutical, water, and life science. Khalid’s contribution in sales, engineering, projects, and corporate engagement experience has been instrumental in expanding Yokogawa’s leading presence in the region. With 20 years of experience with Yokogawa, Khalid has been a member of the management team for the last 12 years and has accrued rich experience in Quality, HRD, Administration, and Crisis Management.

Fethi Khiari


Fethi Khiari took the helm of United Foods Company (UFC) in April 2012 as the CEO, taking on the lead role in steering the company towards a major shift in its strategic direction and culture. Under his leadership, UFC drastically changed its direction to address the geo-political effects of 2011’s events in the Arab world. These have heavily and negatively impacted the security, the economy, (the import policies / the national currencies value) and the wellbeing of the citizens/ consumers, in Aseel food traditional markets. Mr. Khiari managed to shift the dependency on Aseel ghee exports to the Levant and North Africa and expanded revenue streams through focusing on other markets and introducing new categories. Meanwhile , UFC started a new journey by re-engineering totally its sales and distribution set up in the United Arab Emirates. Mr. Khiari started with restructuring the management suite, setting new objectives for the Company: 1. Focus on UAE local market 2. Upgrade the Production facilities and supply chain through a heavy Capex. 3. Improve the integrated Information systems, adopting SAP as its backbone 4. Enlarge the product portfolio 5. Embrace a more assertive and dynamic role in other GCC markets. Prior to joining United Foods Company, Mr Khiari was the CEO of the confectionery division of IFFCO Group in Dubai for six years. Previously, he worked for 10 years for Chupa Chups in South America and for 8 years in Nestle North Africa and Central America.

Alia Al Mazrouei


Alia Al Mazrouei holds a Bachelor's Degree in Management Information Systems and an MBA in Global Leadership from the United Arab Emirates University. Post study, her exceptional ability to develop human capital investment strategies led to her appointment at several Abu Dhabi Government entities. From 2012 until January 2018, she was Group Chief Operating Officer of Mazrui International LLC, established by her family 45 years ago and which today is an Abu Dhabi-based conglomerate with a highly diversified business portfolio. The group consists of more than 85 companies operating in the oil and gas, construction, retail, industrial, healthcare, education, logistics, real estate, and investment management services. She is a board member of Insurance House, Finance House , Abu Dhabi Business Women Council & Abu Dhabi School of Management. In 2013 she was awarded the Arab Women's Award for Entrepreneurship and in 2014 was voted the twenty sixth most powerful Arab woman in the Forbes Middle East list of the world's 200 most powerful Arab women. In 2017, she was included in the Forbes list of the world’s 100 most powerful Arab business women. In addition to her corporate career success, she is founder of Little Haven nursery and co-founder of a series of wildly successful, home grown food concepts including The Fae Restaurant; food trucks and F&B consultancy, and The Food Truck, a unique concept that brands and transforms trucks into mobile kitchens to create original, tasty, non fixed catering venues. Alia is highly respected for her business acumen, creativity, and her flair for mentoring and nurturing new Emirati talents.

Alia Al Mazrouei


Alia Al Mazrouei holds a Bachelor's Degree in Management Information Systems and an MBA in Global Leadership from the United Arab Emirates University. Post study, her exceptional ability to develop human capital investment strategies led to her appointment at several Abu Dhabi Government entities. From 2012 until January 2018, she was Group Chief Operating Officer of Mazrui International LLC, established by her family 45 years ago and which today is an Abu Dhabi-based conglomerate with a highly diversified business portfolio. The group consists of more than 85 companies operating in the oil and gas, construction, retail, industrial, healthcare, education, logistics, real estate, and investment management services. She is a board member of Insurance House, Finance House , Abu Dhabi Business Women Council & Abu Dhabi School of Management. In 2013 she was awarded the Arab Women's Award for Entrepreneurship and in 2014 was voted the twenty sixth most powerful Arab woman in the Forbes Middle East list of the world's 200 most powerful Arab women. In 2017, she was included in the Forbes list of the world’s 100 most powerful Arab business women. In addition to her corporate career success, she is founder of Little Haven nursery and co-founder of a series of wildly successful, home grown food concepts including The Fae Restaurant; food trucks and F&B consultancy, and The Food Truck, a unique concept that brands and transforms trucks into mobile kitchens to create original, tasty, non fixed catering venues. Alia is highly respected for her business acumen, creativity, and her flair for mentoring and nurturing new Emirati talents.

Balki Radhakrishnan


Balki Radhakrishnan is the Managing Director for General Mills – Global Emerging Markets. General Mills is a US based global leader in branded consumer foods and pet food products. In this role Balki leads a portfolio of industry leading brands such as Haagen Dazs, Betty Crocker, Nature Valley, Pillsbury and Green Giant in over 40 developed and emerging markets across this diverse geography. A passionate champion of the Emerging Markets consumer, Balki’s industry views are shaped by his rich blend of experiences gained from living and working in the United States, Southeast and North Asia, India, Middle East and Africa. His consumer-packaged goods industry foundations are in brand marketing, consumer insights, corporate strategic planning, and new markets development, shaped during a career spanning over two decades in the industry.

Duncan McCulloch


Duncan McCulloch is the General Manager for Mars Wrigley Middle East & Africa. Duncan has worked for Mars for over 20 years, starting his career in the UK in 2000 where he held a number of different sales and marketing roles. During his tenure at Mars, Duncan has worked across the Mars Chocolate, Gum, Mint, Fruity Confections and Pet Care business categories holding many senior positions, spanning across many geographies including UK, Europe, Asia and Middle East. In 2009 he was appointed as the Sales Director for Wrigley UK, helping to integrate the Wrigley business into Mars. Since 2012 Duncan has lived and worked outside of the UK, becoming the Mars General Manager for Czech Republic and Slovakia and in 2015 he was appointed as Mars VP for the Wrigley South Asia business based in Kuala Lumpur. In 2017 Duncan Moved to Dubai and was appointed as the General Manager for Mars Wrigley for Developing Middle East Africa, where he successfully integrated and transformed 4 separate business units into one formidable business. More recently, Duncan has been appointed as General Manager for Mars Wrigley’s newlycreated and expanded Middle East and Africa unit, responsible for leading the entire business across Saudi and Gulf markets, Sub Sahara Africa, North Africa and Levant. Additional responsibilities to his newly expanded role, include being an Inclusion & Diversity Council Member for Mars Inc as well as the Project Sponsor for Mars Purpose Driven Business Innovation projects.

Dr. Raman Kumar


Dr. Raman Kumar, a visionary in Logistics and Accounting, with more than 35 years of executive management experience in the Logistics industry. Under his leadership and management, Al-Futtaim Logistics reached new heights within the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Oman. Leading cost and time saving initiatives in Food & Beverages logistics, warehouse fulfillment, and value-added services, enabling customers to make faster decisions, enhanced supply chain transparency, with uncompromised value. Dr. Kumar is currently focusing on digital transformations, centered on unique solutions to further enhance the value chain for retailers, QSRs, distributors and manufacturers.

Ahmad Elshal

General Secretary, DANONE MIDDLE EAST

Ahmed Elshal is the General Secretary of Danone, responsible for business services on corporate, regulatory, public and government affairs, as well as legal, compliance, sustainability and communications for the Middle East and Africa region comprising of over 16 countries. Starting at Danone in 2010, Ahmed was the Director of Government and Regulatory Affairs for Middle East, Africa and South East Asia overseeing government affairs, public policy and compliance. His comprehensive and strategic understanding of the local policies and the regulatory environment enabled him to lead a strong advocacy strategy and contribute to Middle East sales and growth aspiration through speedy innovation and market access of key products for the region. He has also successfully built strong, trustworthy relationships with key opinion leaders in the region. Coupled with his passion and commitment for sustainability and innovation following Danone’s One Planet One Health vision, Ahmed has taken over as the General Secretary in the region. In addition, Ahmed’s role over the years has developed to incorporate many sustainability topics including circular economy and carbon footprint as he is an active member of the Multinational Companies Business Group (MCBG) and Dubai Chamber’s Sustainability Network. Ahmed is also a member of the Medical Nutrition International Industry (MNI) and the UAE Food and Business Group; additionally, he is a Halal expert. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy in Mansoura University and carries a Marketing diploma as well from the American University of Cairo. He also holds a Six Sigma Green Belt.

Khalid Sharif Al Awadhi

Chief Executive Officer, Environment, Health & Safety Sector (EHS), DUBAI MUNICIPALITY

Khalid Sharif Al Awadhi is CEO of the Dubai Municipality’s Environment, Health & Safety Control Sector, overseeing 5 departments including Environment, Public Health & Safety, Food Safety, Dubai Central Laboratory, and Sustainability & Renewable Energy Applications. With 30 years of experience and held several prior positions including Head of Food Inspection at the Food Control Department, Assistant Manager of General health, and Executive Manager of the Food safety Department. Khalid is a keynote speaker at many renowned conferences and has won the International Association for Food Protection Award for Food Safety in 2006 and 2016. He is a member and chairperson of several national and federal committees, including Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA) board of directors, Dubai Crisis and Disaster Management Team. Khalid holds a BSc in Chemistry and Animal and a Master’s degree in Environmental Risk Management.

H.E. Yerlan Baidaulet


H.E. Yerlan Baidaulet is the Director General of IOFS which is OIC specialized institution, in field of food security and agriculture development, founded in 2013 and is the Chair of the International IFPA Board. H.E. Yerlan Baidaulet has a long- term experience in International Relations and in Islamic Finance worked for 28 years and held various corporate and management positions, including IDB Executive Director, Head of JSC Engineering and Technology Transfer Center, Eurasian Development Bank, Chairman of the Association for Islamic Finance Development, The Experts Council by the Security Council of Kazakhstan, and others. H.E. Yerlan Baidaulet has won the CIFA Special Prize 2015 (Leadership Role) for the contribution to the development of the Global Islamic Finance industry (awarded in Bahrain by GIFA UK Committee). H.E. Yerlan Baidaulet holds a Bachelor of History and Political Economy and Ph.D. Degree of Political Economy, MBA in Banking & Finance in KIMEP University and Postgraduate MAPOW program, St. Gallen University, Switzerland.

Steven William Ross

Director Added Value Products, TANMIAH FOOD COMPANY

With over 27 years’ food and beverage FMCG experience in senior positions across General Management, Purchasing, Supply Chain Management, Sales & Marketing and Manufacturing in companies such as Sainsbury’s Supermarket, Whitbread plc, Subway (Europe & Middle East) & Tanmiah Food Company Steve is able to apply his knowledge, experience and insight to identify opportunities and quickly bring them to fruition. Steve is an experienced business leader in the formation and implementation of business strategies designed to drive optimum sourcing, efficient operations and profitable sales. In his current role Steve is responsible for the Added Value Foods Division of Tanmiah Food Company including the NPD function whose aim is to bring insight led innovation quickly to market. Tanmiah Food Company is a vertically integrated poultry products producer with farms and primary processing units in KSA as well as added value plants in both KSA and the UAE.

Niels Hougaard

Managing Director, Arabia Area, TETRA PAK

Having a background in the Danish dairy industry he joined Tetra Pak in 1995 as a Product Manager. He worked several roles in processing, business development and international key account management before joining Tetra Pak Saudi Arabia in 2003, where his last position was Sales Director for the larger Tetra Pak Arabia. In 2010 he left to Switzerland to take a global role as Director Strategic Account Management. Niels next move was Managing Director Tetra Pak Nordics before he again returned to Arabia Area for his current role.

Gary Brenner

Director of Market & Corporate Development, ALEPH FARMS

Gary drives strategic market development for both Aleph's corporate and commercial footprint and is helping to lead the company through its next phase of growth. Gary is currently developing a network of potential partners for the company across APAC, LATAM and EMEA regions. Prior to Aleph Farms, Gary was the Co-Founder of Solbar (Israel), where he built soy proteins & soy isoflavones businesses and created a global network of strategic customers and distribution channels across Israel, China and the US. He has over 30 years of experience in building new ties between emerging markets and businesses worldwide, as well as executing new product development, marketing and sales strategies for innovative, natural active ingredients and functional F&B companies. He received his MA in Philosophy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He achieved his BA in History at University of California, Los Angeles.

Mona Ghobashi

Scientific and Regulatory Affairs Director–Global Emerging Markets, MARS WRIGLEY

Mona Ghobashi is the Scientific and Regulatory Affairs Director for Global Emerging Markets at Mars Wrigley. Mona joined Mars in 2017, and has over 20 years of experience in Scientific and Regulatory Affairs within various organizations and sectors including Kraft Foods, Johnson & Johnson, as well as the Ministry of Health in Egypt as a former regulator. Mona holds a Bachelor’s degree in Pharmaceutical sciences from Cairo University.

Tom Harvey

General Manager - Commercial, SPINNEYS

Tom joined Spinneys 3 years ago from the UK where he had previously worked in the buying teams of Marks & Spencer and Sainsburys in a variety of roles focused on fresh meat and latterly dairy. After two years leading the protein team at Spinneys, Tom was appointed to the Executive Leadership Team to manage the whole ambient grocery, frozen and non-food commercial division. During this time he helped to steer Spinneys & Waitrose through the turbulence of panic buying and the impact on retail of COVID-19 and devised the Spinneys Local Business Incubator Programme, which will see the first of the finalists launch into stores at the end of October. At the end of September, Tom was appointed as General Manager – Commercial. He assumed responsibility for the fresh buying team as well and now leads the entire commercial and sourcing operation for both Spinneys and Waitrose across UAE and Oman. In the last year he has led Spinneys to sustained record market share by implementing new ranging strategies, differentiating the product offer and focusing on a collaborative approach to working with suppliers.

Sheikha Abdulla Al Nuaimi

Executive Director Commercial Operations, AJMAN FREE ZONE

Sheikha Abdulla Al Nuaimi has worked across various department within the Ajman Free Zone over the last years, prior to assuming her current position as Executive Director of Commercial Operations. Under her leadership, Sheikha is in charge of four key departments--Marketing & Communications; Sales; Customer Happiness and Developmental Services. Sheikha is responsible for defining and managing the Ajman Free Zone's brand. She is tasked with targeting potential customers and attracting them to be part of the free zone ecosystem. Sheikha ensures that that business service standards are met while AFZ community are given the required guidance and support. Lastly, Sheikha oversees the day-to-day affairs of the developmental services, which is tasked with collaborating with both the private and public sector to ensure customer happiness.
Sheikha has received many awards and recognition for her with the Ajman Free Zone. This includes the Project Manager Award (AJEP), which was awarded to her by H.H. Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Ajman, last 2013. She has also been awarded with the Middle East Awards 'Future Leader in Free Zone Industry 2020. She is also an experienced assessor across a number of government and private awards in UAE.
Sheikha holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from Ajman University and Master’s in Business Administration in HR and Development from The Canadian University of Dubai. She is also a graduate of the 2018 Ajman Leadership Program.

Muhammad Idrees

Integrated Supply Chain Director – MENAP MONDELEZ INTERNATIONAL

Muhammad Idrees is the Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan (MENAP) Integrated Supply Chain Director at Mondelez International. He is responsible for overall supply chain and manufacturing efforts of the regional business unit. Idrees is based in Dubai and is a member of the Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa Leadership team. Throughout his eight-year tenure with the company, Idrees has been directly responsible for a number of manufacturing sites across different business functions. He was also the Director of Supply Chain Excellence across the EEMEA region. Idrees joined Mondelez International from Proctor & Gamble (P&G), where he enjoyed a successful career that spanned more than 20 years. During that time, he was the Middle East and Africa (MEA) Manufacturer Capability Leader, based in Egypt, and taking on the responsibility of coaching, training and consulting the sites on the company’s manufacturing systems and best-in-class practices across the region. Additionally, at P&G, he assumed a broad range of roles and responsibilities that included market and demand planning, operations, as well as plant management in Pakistan. Muhammad Idrees is a recognized supply chain executive. He brings strong insight in overseeing and managing supply chain and logistics strategies and operations to maximize process efficiency and productivity. He has earned his MBA in global supply chain from the University of Tennessee, Haslam College of Business and a Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering from NED University of Engineering and Technology in Karachi.

Vedat Guler

Sales Director, Middle East, SIDEL

Vedat has extensive experience in Equipment Sales with top brands in the Beverage industry spanning more 28 years. Having started with the machine production division of a Pepsi Bottler in Turkey, he then worked with the two other leading suppliers of filling line manufacturers and more recently he joined Sidel as Sales Director for the Middle East region since 2019. He understands the market and customer needs well and is successful in problem solving. Having worked with the top three companies in the industry as a Sales Leader and connected with all consumable suppliers throughout the supply chain he is considered as a very experienced partner by his customers.

Lamia Fakhr

Director Corporate Affairs, KELLOGG’S

Lamia Fakhr is the Corporate Affairs Director, Middle East North Africa and Turkey at Kellogg’s, one of the biggest American multinational food-manufacturing companies in the world. In her capacity, Mrs. Fakhr is responsible for planning, developing and executing all internal and external corporate communications, public affairs, Government relations and CSR plans in line with the company’s global strategy in the region. Leading on the sustainability and philanthropic agenda in the region. She is also a member of the Leadership Team working closely with the Board of Directors. Mrs. Lamia has more than 15 years of experience in the fields of Public Relations, Marketing and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Over the course of her career, she held senior positions across a number of leading multinational companies including: Nortel Networks, Electrolux Egypt and finally BP Egypt before joining the Kellogg’s team in 2016. Her experience was not limited to multinational corporations only, Mrs. Fakhr has a remarkable expertise in the NGO and community development field through her work at Ma3an NGO specialized in developing slums, as well as teaching Public Relations and Corporate affairs in Misr International University. Mrs. Fakhr holds a B.A in Economics from the American University in Cairo.

Sophie Corcut

Head of Sustainability Strategy and Programmes, SPINNEYS

Sophie leads the Sustainability Strategy and programmes for Spinneys around three key pillars: sourcing, health and wellbeing and waste. Spinneys is making significant strides to embed sustainability into the business, working with external partners and experts to deliver change across the value chain. Prior to working for Spinneys, Sophie worked in-house and as a consultant for some of the world’s largest retailers and brands including Tesco, Accenture and P&G.

Dominique Floch


Mr. Dominique Floch is the General Manager in Tate and Lyle Turkey – Middle East – Africa based in Dubai office since 2014. He is leading the sales and technical team doing the development of all these markets for Speciality Food Ingredients.
Mr. Dominique Floch has more than 20 years of business management experience focusing on operations and development of new markets. He started his career in Asia, establishing a sourcing network of food products for a supermarket chain. He joined the Danone Group in 2002 where he held several supply chain and procurement positions in France and overseas. He became purchasing director for Al Safi Danone in Saudi Arabia in 2008 and in 2012, he continued his career in Danone South Africa holding a similar position. He graduated with a degree of Agricultural Engineering from Higher Educational Agricultural Institution of Angers, France.

Mubarak Al Mansoori

Chief Human Resources & Corporate Services Officer, AGTHIA

Mubarak Al Mansoori is the Chief Human Resources & Corporate Services Officer of Agthia Group PJSC. Established in 2004, Agthia is listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange and is part of ADQ, one of the region’s largest holding companies with a broad portfolio of major enterprises spanning key sectors of Abu Dhabi’s diversified economy. Agthia offers a world class portfolio of integrated businesses encompassing categories such as Water, Snacking, Processed Protein, Grocery, Flour and Feed; spread across the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Egypt, Turkey and Jordan. Prior to joining Agthia, Mubarak was the Vice President of Human Capital & Administration Support at Emirates Steel. Earlier roles include leadership positions at Emirates Advanced Investments Group and Etisalat. Mubarak brings over 20 years of experience in Human Capital and Corporate Services, including Talent Management, Change Management, Senior Talent Sourcing, Performance Management and Leadership Development. Over the years, he has accumulated outstanding proficiency in HR Strategy, Corporate Communications, Project Management and Business Operational Efficiency. He holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Zayed University, UAE, and a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration (Human Resources) from Eastern Washington University, USA.

Ajit Singh Sawhney


Abdulaziz AlMulla


Abdulaziz’s interest in food security began during his time at McKinsey & Co. where he was working extensively with GCC governments, and addressing a variety of national risk challenges. A serial investor in disruptive technologies (Lyft, Indigo Ag, among others), he is dedicated to addressing the food security challenge. He dedicates time to the region’s food ecosystem as a mentor at Savour Ventures, the Middle East’s first accelerator focused on food. Previously a banker with HSBC, Abdulaziz holds a BA from University of Pennsylvania and MBA from Wharton.

Mustafa Koita

CEO & Chairman, KOITA

Entrepreneur Mustafa Y. Koita is the founder and CEO of Koita Foods. He founded the organic food company in 2013 in the UAE with a mission to make healthy food more accessible to families in the MENASA region. His dedication to combine quality with health without compromising on taste in a staple product, has led this Dubai - based homegrown FMCG brand to go global. As of September 2021, Koita offers a portfolio of 22 products across organic dairy, lactose free, and plant - based options in 10 countries including a recent launch in the US. Whilst the team calls him “Chief Everything Officer”, Mustafa’s sights are firmly set on global expansion. Here in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia, he says there is still some work to be done to teach people the importance of product sourcing while in the US, the aim is to offer a fresh, new brand in an otherwise tired category.

Jesus Gutierrez

Managing Director, ENGIE SOLUTIONS

Jesus has over 25+ experience in energy, energy efficiency / renewables sector. He is the co-founder and managing director of Smart4Power. He leads business development in GCC countries and chairs Engie's innovation committee. His track record includes 200+ energy audits both commercial and industrial facilities and signed 20+ energy performance contract projects (guaranteed savings / shared savings)

Sandra Grenet


Sandra Grenet is the R&D Director at Agthia Group PJSC. Agthia offers a world class portfolio of integrated businesses encompassing categories such as Water, Snacking, Processed Protein, Grocery, Flour and Feed; spread across the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Egypt, Turkey and Jordan. A well-rounded R&D professional, Sandra holds 25 years of experience in the food industry, managing complex Product, Packaging & Process Development as well as Implementation, from pure Innovation & Green Field to Product Renovation & Optimization Projects across many categories. Prior to joining Agthia, Sandra Grenet worked at Mars GCC & Mars UK for a total of 10 years, and 4 Years at Unilever / Wall’s Ice cream. Sandra holds a degree in Biotechnology and Food science / Food Processing with a Major in R&D from Ecole de Biologie Industrielle, Cergy-Pontoise, France.

Mohamed Bahaa

Managing Partner, NGC International Advisory

Mohamed Bahaa is Co-Founder and Managing Partner at NGC International Advisory with more than 9 years of relevant experience in the areas of Public Policy, Government Relations and Regulatory Affairs. Bahaa holds a Masters Degree in Finance from Harvard University, a Masters Degree in Economics and a Bachelors degree in Finance from the American University in Cairo, has attended the Mastering Trade Policy Program at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and holds a certificate of International Arbitration from Cairo University. Bahaa started his career as the Research Assistant to the Associate Dean of the School of Business at the American University in Cairo, then joined Management inSites, a US based consulting firm in 2009. In 2010 he co-founded his first company, Archimede Middle East; a US based firm operating in the Middle East. In 2012, Bahaa founded the Egyptian Vegetables Group (EGY VEGGIE), managing and cultivating more than 10 different crops over 500 acres of land, marketed in Egypt and the Middle East. In 2013, Bahaa co-founded N Gage Consulting as the first Government Relations and lobbying firm in Egypt, now serving more than 45 blue-chip multinational firms. As a previous executive, Bahaa has supported the company to grow regionally through setting up the GCC operations in November 2018.

Wael Ismael

Vice President, Corporate Affairs, PEPSICO

Wael Ismail is currently Vice President for Corporate Affairs for Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan as well as Sustainable Packaging Lead for Africa, Middle East, North Africa and South Asia (AMESA) based in Dubai. Ismail joined PepsiCo in 2016 and has assumed several roles within the Public Policy and Government Affairs (PPGA) function since then focused on developing and advocating for “win-win” public policy solutions. Ismail took over the combined Public Policy and Communications function for PepsiCo in the MENA region in January 2019 before his current role. Ismail is a Public Affairs professional with extensive experience of more than 15 years with special focus on the Middle East. Ismail represents PepsiCo in various industry bodies and groups including: US Chamber of Commerce (Washington DC), Multinational Companies Business Group (Dubai, UAE), International Advisory Council (Dubai, UAE) and a frequent participant in key regional forums including the World Government Summit (UAE), WEF MENA, and the Future Investment Initiative (Riyadh, KSA). Ismail is passionate about driving PepsiCo’s Winning with Purpose Strategy and Sustainable Food Systems. He is a founding member of Project Circle, a circular economy coalition in the UAE in partnership with the Ministry of Climate Change in the UAE. Ismail is a Jordanian national holding a BA in Economics from the American University in Cairo (AUC) as well as a Master’s of Arts (MA) in Middle East Studies from the same University. Have lived, studied and worked across the Middle East in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and the UAE

Gagandeep Singh Sahni

Managing Director, SAFCO

Mr. Gagan Sahni is the Managing Director of Safco group of Companies, the region’s leading foodservice and distribution company since 1994. Safco is well renowned for its commitment to quality and diverse range of international brands & premium products worldwide. Mr Gagan is a dynamic and driven management leader with 17 years of international Food & Beverage distribution experience and a track record of building profitable businesses through people, product and channel development. He is strategic thinker who delivers results by developing long term client relationships to drive business and market share growth in competitive sectors such as foodservice, packaging, convenience and distribution.

Radwa Medhat

Quality & Regulatory Senior Manager , MENAT & Pakistan, KELLOGG’S

Radwa is a Regulatory Affairs professional with more than 15 years of experience in Scientific and Regulatory affairs field. She started in the pharmaceutical field then moved to FMCG, specialized in the food industry. Throughout her career with Regulatory, she has lead different regulatory teams towards compliance. She has also managed and worked on multiple external initiatives and advocacy efforts with various governments. Radwa has held various regional roles in the regulatory field and has worked on multiple food categories, she also obtained a postgraduate certificate form DeMontfort University – Leister – UK, where she studied EU food Hygiene regulation, the establishment of the EFSA and performed various comparisons and studies between codex, FDA and EU, that helped better understanding to Food regulation. Radwa has various senior positions across big multinational food companies such as PepsiCo, Mondelez, Nestle before she joined Kellogg’s in 2019 as Senior Manager Quality and Regulatory Affairs.

Rizwan Ahmed Siddiqui

Director - Finance and Commerce at MAI DUBAI™ BOTTLED DRINKING WATER

Spearheading the Finance and Commerce division of the leading bottled water company, Mai Dubai, Rizwan Ahmed Siddiqui brings over two decades of industry expertise working with major FMCG companies with reputed food & beverage brands. Prior to joining Mai Dubai, Siddiqui served as the Head of Finance, Procurement, and Supply Chain at Emirates Refreshments P.J.S.C. for over eight years and was responsible for the overall financial management including long term financial strategies, forecasting, procurement, and supply chain management, making significant contributions to the financial growth of the business. Fully owned by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), Mai Dubai’s commercial production started in 2014 and is renowned in the bottled drinking water industry in Dubai; ensuring the highest standards of quality locally and globally. To date, Mai Dubai has exported its products to several countries in Asia, Africa, Europe, and the GCC. Siddiqui graduated from The Trinity College and University, London, United Kingdom with a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) - Finance. He is also a Fellow Member of the Institute of Financial Accountants (IFA) and Institute of Public Accountants (IPA).

Gerald Mahinda


Gerald Mahinda is a high-energy, innovation focused general management executive with a proven track record creating profitable and sustainable businesses in Africa with clear vision and well-defined short- and long-term goals that benefit all stakeholders including the company’s management team, work force, and shareholders. Executive assessment shows him to have a key strength in “Creating Possibilities”—setting ambitious goals, driving for step-change, and inspirationally freeing up his teams to think outside-the-box and drive impressive growth. He readily aligns people on stretch goals, connecting brilliantly with people to manage stakeholders—articulating the journey required, “banging the drum” of new expectations, and driving a coaching culture at the organizational level. Mr. Mahinda has held a variety of executive positions including CEO and Managing Director roles for major multinationals across Africa, Middle East & Turkey region. The exceptional results he has invariably delivered come from his focus on strategic planning, people development, and technology utilization, supported by another “spike” strength in innovation and value creation through restructuring, M&As, and joint ventures. Mr. Mahinda is currently the Managing Director of Kellogg Africa, Middle East & Turkey based out of Dubai. He has been with Kellogg since the start of 2014. His primary objective is to provide Leadership, Inspiration and Strategic direction for the newly created Africa, Middle East & Turkey region for Kellogg’s in order to deliver the long-term growth potential for Kellogg’s developed and emerging markets strategy. This includes growing the African businesses, expanding and opening new markets in Turkey and Pakistan in order to deliver a profitable and sustainable business across the region. In 2015 Kellogg’s invested approximately $850 million for a major stake in one of Nigeria’s leading food company. He is also a key member of the Group’s Asia Pacific – Middle East –

Hassan Safi

Chief Financial Officer, AL AIN FARMS

Mr. Hassan Safi has been a member of UAE community almost his whole life, as he was born and raised in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. With more than 25 years of experience in Finance Management, Auditing and Accounting, Hassan's career started at Ernst & Young UAE. He then progressed to Audit Manager at KPMG, Chief Audit Executive at the General Holding Corporation (Senaat), Head of Finance for its subsidiary (Al Foah Company), and then Finance Director at Yahsat (a subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company). Early, 2015 he became one of the partners and founders of the Metis Management Consultancy Company, where he remains an active member up to date. 2016, he has performed a role of CFO for the ACPN (American Center for Psychiatry & Neurology). Hassan has joined Al Ain Farms in 2017 as one of the key team members to lead the efforts for the company turnaround period in its journey toward a vital pillar of the UAE Food Security, where he today performs a dual function of a Chief Financial Officer and General Manager of Dairy& Juice, and is also a member of the Top Management team. He lives with his family in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

Yusuf Tambawala

VP, Corporate Strategy & Development, GHASSAN ABOUD GROUP

Yusuf Tambawala has over 23 years of diverse experience in strategy formulation, deployment and implementation, marketing and operations, new product and service development, market assessments, growth/ entry strategy formulation, international strategy and strategic alliances. As Vice President of Corporate Strategy and Development for Ghassan Aboud Group, Yusuf is responsible for managing the strategy for the groups existing businesses and developing new growth opportunities. Prior to this, at DP World and Economic Zones World, Yusuf contributed to the Emirates of Dubai strategic direction as the Project Manager for the Dubai Industrial Strategy and the eCommerce Strategy along with mega development projects within Jafza and DP World. Yusuf worked with S. P. Jain School of Global Management as an Academician and Corporate Relations Head. He has also worked with Tata Group as a Senior Manager of Product Development for their ‘bottom of the pyramid’ Hospitality Product. He started his career as a Business Manager with various departments of Indian Hotels Company Limited. Yusuf holds a graduate degree from Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University, The Netherlands. He also holds a Bachelor’s degree from University of Huddersfield, U. K.

Darsana Nair

Head of Category Planning and Activations, Gulf & New Markets, MONDELEZ INTERNATIONAL

Darsana Nair is the Head of Category Planning & Activations, Gulf & New Markets at Mondelez International. In her current capacity, Darsana provides strategic leadership across Mondelez’s categories including chocolates, biscuits, powdered beverages, cheese, gum, and candy. In addition, she spearheads sales operations and drives sales capability across the region. Darsana is a seasoned FMCG professional. With more than 15 years of experience in the food & beverage industry across the Middle East, Africa, and Europe, Nair has specialized in strategy, business development, sales, marketing, while also gaining practical knowledge in category management, trade, and shopper marketing. Prior to joining Mondelez International, she worked across major blue-chip companies including PepsiCo, Mars Wrigley as well as Arla Foods. Throughout her experience, she became proficient in developing high-performing commercial organizations, and in leading world-class partnership with retailers. With an MBA from London Business School, Darsana Nair has honed her skills in commercial strategy and P&L management. As a thought leader of the food industry for more than a decade Darsana has been a popular face of various food forums as Keynote Speaker and has been quoted in the regional news publications including GulfNews and Khaleej Times.

Rory Mccarthy

Chief Commercial Officer, YELLOW DOOR ENERGY

As the Chief Commercial Officer of Yellow Door Energy, Rory leads the operation and expansion of the company’s business across all markets. Under his guidance, the regional and country teams bring solar energy and energy efficiency solutions to commercial and industrial customers in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia. With over 25 years of global leadership experience, Rory brings forth in-depth customer understanding, comprehensive market knowledge and a relentless drive for sustainable energy growth. Prior to joining Yellow Door Energy, Rory was Managing Director of ARJ Water Technology Group, a company which specializes in water technology and services construction markets throughout the Middle East. He also served as Commercial Director for YALE Europe, part of NACCO Group of Companies. Previously, he was Director for Liberty Media in the UK. Prior to that, he was with Xerox where he worked in Europe, China and New Zealand. Rory holds an MBA from Hult University in the U.S. He also has a Post Graduate Degree in Commerce from Auckland University in New Zealand.

Shefa Alhalah

Senior Regional Manager, Middle East, NUTRICIA MIDDLE EAST DMCC

Shefa Alhalah Senior regulatory, Government and Public Affairs Manager at Danone Nutricia Middle East. Shefa has 20 years of rich and versatile experience in leadership, execution, and implementation of successful organizational integrations in both governmental and private sectors. Her career journey started in the private sector where she held the position of quality control manager and then with her passion for food science; she joined Backaldrin as Research and Development Director, where she was overseeing the new product formula developments. Shefa enriched her leadership and experience in regulatory and food laws when she joined two key governmental bodies during the period (2007-2015); Jordan Standards and Metrology Organization (JISMO), where she held the position of food standards regulator, served in managing the national technical committees for standards developments for the food sector. In addition, Jordan Food and Drug Administration (JFDA), where she held the position of head of food standards and consultation, with her role she led the technical team who was responsible for the implementation of food standards and providing consultation to the food industry and leading national technical committees for the registration of specialized nutrition products, Athletes food, and food supplements. Her vast experience, with a well understanding of local, regional and global regulatory environment enabled her to build a trustworthy and sustainable relationship with the key opinion leaders in the region. and hence, leading regulatory advocacy in the Middle East in her last role as Senior Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Manager at Nestle’ Middle East (2015-2018), where she served as regional regulatory pillar coordinating RSA projects across functions, representing Nestle’ Middle East externally, managing internal and external regulatory issues, and building competencies for halal in MENA region.

Priya Sarma Mathur

Sr. Sustainability Head for MENA, Russia, Ukraine, Belarus & Turkey, UNILEVER

Priya joined Unilever in February 2008 as the Corporate Communication Manager for Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and is based in Jebel Ali, Dubai which is the regional Unilever headquarter. In January 2012 she was assigned the additional responsibility for Employee Engagement across the countries of MENA, Turkey, Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. In 2019 she was promoted as Sr. Sustainability Head for MENA, Russia, Ukraine, Belarus & Turkey and in 2021 the additional remit of MENA External Affairs was added to her portfolio. Prior to joining Unilever, Priya worked in global advertising agencies including FCB Ulka, India and Equity Advertising (an affiliate of Grey Communication) and Lowe Look (an affiliate of Lowe Worldwide), Egypt. In 2016, she led the formation of the Advertising Business Group (ABG) and has been its Board Member since 2016. The ABG is GCC’s largest advertising and marketing self regulatory body with over 60 members who account for over 70% of the MENA’s advertising spend. Since 2018 she has been representing the Multinational Companies Busienss Group (MCBG) in the FCSA led Private Sector Advisory Council on the SDG’s. In Nov 2020, Priya led the launch of the UAE Chapter of the Unstereotype Alliance (UA) in partnership with UN Women. The UA is a thought and action platform that seeks to eradicate harmful gender-based stereotypes in media and advertising. (https://www.unstereotypealliance.org/en). Priya has a Master’sin Business and is an Accredited Business Communicator (ABC) having successfully completed a course from the International Association for Business Communicators in 2010

Binoy George

General Manager Contract Logistics, AL FUTTAIM LOGISTICS

A creative logistician with expertise in multiple sectors such as Retail operations, high-throughput market place fulfillment, food and beverages cold chain, fashion, spare parts Logistics and last mile delivery services. Strategic leader managing contract logistics, cold chain and fulfillment operations at Al-Futtaim Logistics in the MENA region. He has played a key role in driving growth through intuitive solutions in specialized verticals including cold chain, F&B operations, e-commerce fulfillment and Middle East expansion keeping customer centricity and talent development as number one priority.

Tamer Mosalam

VP and GM, Gulf and Levant Foods, PEPSICO

Tamer Mosalam is the Vice President and General Manager for GCC-Levant Foods, and PepsiCo JV Chairman of Board in Saudi Arabia. In his role, Tamer is responsible to lead PepsiCo foods portfolio strategy, deliver on the potential growth in Saudi, other Gulf and Levant while delivering on PepsiCo investment opportunities, and performance with purpose global agenda. Prior to his current role, Tamer was the CEO, and Managing Director for PepsiCo Food Division for Egypt and North Africa, where he led the re-design and transformation of the Savory portfolio in Egypt, along with redefining the operating model strategies and lead PepsiCo infrastructure investment that enabled the company to double the business revenues and profits. In his capacity, he worked closely with external stakeholders in Egypt and Key NA markets to consolidate and integrate private sector feedback to emerging markets taxation strategies, consumer protection law, integrate entrepreneur financing into investment laws, upgrade food safety regulations and the development of agriculture vision and unlock potential for industrial infrastructure. Tamer works across the Startup community in Egypt & Middle East, providing mentorship to wide network of startups and small size business, while supporting and sponsoring financing through venture capital funds. Tamer holds the post of Vice-Chairman for AmCham Saudi Arabia (American Chamber of Commerce), and the Chair for the newly launched Trade & Industry committee in Saudi, the Co-Chair for the agriculture committee at the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, The Head of the Food & Beverage committee at the Canada Egypt business council, a core committee member for the Trade, and Industry committee at the American Chamber of Commerce, and member of Egypt agriculture Export council. Tamer works closely with NGO on women empowerment programs, design for females led entrepreneur programs, and the co-founder and sponsor for PepsiCo Tamaka

Alexander Alzamora

Senior Manager - Industrial Applications, ENGIE SOLUTIONS

Alexander is a seasoned renewable energy industry veteran with more than 15 years of experience in Europe and the Middle East. As the Senior Manager of Industrial Aplications for ENGIE Solutions, Alexander is responsible for driving the effort to decarbonize heavy industry by facilitating the adoption of energy efficiency measures aimed to reducing the specific energy consumption of energy intensive processes such as cement manufacturing, metallurgy and primary food production. He led the commissioning team of the first Organic Rankine Cycle system in the Gulf Region, integrated into a cement production process, and has carried out multiple detailed energy audits and detailed feasibility studies across several industries across Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain. Alexander is Expert in complex thermodynamic systems such as the Organic Rankine Cycle and Steam Cycle optimization.

Saahil Khan, CEM®

Business Development Manager, Energy Optimisation and Retrofit Industry – India, Middle East & Africa, GRUNDFOS

Saahil Khan is a Certified Energy Manager with 4 years of experience in the field of Retrofit and Energy Optimization. He is part of the Regional Business Development team for India, Middle East, Africa and currently heading the energy optimization activities in MENAP for the Industry segment. His core competency lies in conducting audits, evaluating pumping system and optimizing its operation, to reduce the energy, water and chemical usage making the operation efficient and sustainable. He has worked on several iconic energy projects across the Middle East providing turnkey solutions that have been a great success and recognized by several Government entities.

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The Future Food Forum 2021 is hosted annually as an initiative of The Food and Beverages Manufacturing Business Group (FBMG).

The Food and Beverages Manufacturing Business Group (FBMG) is an association that brings together all food and beverage manufacturing firms in UAE. Formed in 2012, under the auspices of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce, the FBMG is committed to the development of the food and beverage industry. The group provides a platform for firms to cooperate and resolve some of the key challenges faced by the food and beverages industry in the region. This is also an opportunity for firms to network and collaborates on innovations that will benefit the industry.



Connecting key stakeholders across governments, businesses, SMEs and regional entrepreneurs, Ejtemaat’s events management portfolio drives thought leadership, business partnerships and knowledge sharing across the region and the world. With 5+ years of successful conferences, exhibitions, special events and trade missions underway, our 2020 agenda is looking more exciting than ever before. The relationships we build last a lifetime ensuring our team works with you all the way to create legacy-driven event experiences to address today’s challenges and prepare for tomorrow’s opportunities.
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