All A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Innovation Explorer Associate Director
Mars Wrigley

Insights leader. Creative mind. Big picture thinker. Chaos Pilot and Agile Problem Solver. Ana has 16 years of experience in insights, sales, and marketing in local and global roles across different FMCG categories. Currently part of the Global Agile Innovation team focused on building the innovation pipeline for the next 3-5 years. Methodology tester and pilot enthusiast. Sustainability advocate.

Vice President of Technology
Farmer's Fridge
Front End Innovation Scientist

Always rooted in Front End Innovation in her tenure at PepsiCo, Gabby has gone from Product Developer to certified Trendologist within the PepsiCo Beverages North America division. With a food science background but insights-driven instincts, PepsiCo has developed in her a new capability surrounding trends and competitive intelligence, and all within the R&D function. Gabby currently leads the Trend Collective program alongside her work in Front End Innovation based in Valhalla, NY.

Co-Founder & Rainmaker
Mid-Day Squares

Jake Karls is the co-founder and Rainmaker at Mid-Day Squares. . We're here to build the world's next largest Chocolate company Think, What would Hershey’s, Mars, Nestle or Mondelez look like if they launched in 2022. That’s what they’re trying to accomplish. Over the last 4 years, they have built a fully automated chocolate factory (that can make up to $70 million of chocolate per year. They sell their  bars in over 4,500 stores across North America, and have officially sold over 13 million chocolate bars with help from 60+ amazing teammates based in Montreal, Quebec. His purpose in life is to make people feel something deeply inside, to spread good energy and show the world that you can win by being yourself everyday. Jake passionately inspires others to be unapologetically themselves.

VP Applied Technology and Innovation
McCain Foods Limited

Joseph Lake is a big picture thinker with deep food innovation, research and collaboration experience across the global food industry. Joe’s career in diverse and progressive positions with the global powerhouse McCain Foods sparked his entrepreneurial spirit, confirmed his passion for transformative innovation, and honed his analytic and collaborative negotiating skills. While at McCain, he successfully created and launched a global food innovation platform, as well as gained knowledge of innovation network models, incubators, and accelerators in other countries, including the U.S., U.K. and Europe.  As CEO of the Canadian Food Innovation Network, Joe played a key role in building the organization from its conception, attracting talent from across the country, and launching CFIN’s online connector platform, YODL. Under his leadership CFIN awarded more than $8 million to 32 Canadian food tech projects. Since, Joe has returned to McCain Foods, leading a global team driving food technology innovation. Joe studied at Dalhousie University where his meticulous and thorough work in food science and technology to completing his PhD.

Chief Sustainability & Risk Officer
Silver Fern Farms

Kate is a purpose led and impacts driven business leader. Kate joined Silver Fern Farms in October 2020 as Chief Sustainability & Risk Officer to bring a strategic approach to sustainability and risk. Prior to joining Silver Fern Farms Kate has held a number of executive and senior leadership roles including Chief Risk & Sustainability Officer for Vector Ltd, Vice President Risk & Sustainability for the AMCOR global business and Strategic Risk Manager at Toyota Australia. Kate holds a BA/LLB and she practiced commercial law for some years before moving into corporate roles. Kate brings her unique perspective from working in a range of industries which include professional services, agriculture, manufacturing and utilities, both nationally and internationally. Kate is a faculty member of the Cambridge Institute for Sustainable Leadership, Business & Sustainability Executive Leadership Program (Melbourne).

VP of R&D, Nutrition and Scientific Affairs
Simmons Pet Food & Simmons Animal Nutrition

Leah is the Vice President of Research & Development, Nutrition and Scientific Affairs for Simmons Pet Food and Simmons Animal Nutrition. She leads a team of 35 scientists that drives nutrition, pet food formulation, process engineering, ingredient technology and innovation. Leah has a life-long passion for nutrition, health and wellness, new & innovative advances on how to feed our pets better, and consumer insights for pets and pet parents. In her 24+ year career, she has developed deep knowledge in pet food science. In addition to supporting her team at Simmons, Leah also enjoys immersing herself in the industry with her involvement with the Pet Food Institute's (PFI) Nutrition Subcommittee as Vice-Chair, she is a Board of Trustee with the Morris Animal Foundation, and most recently has joined the Pet Food Association of Canada's Board of Directors. Leah received her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Animal Science and Animal Nutrition from the University of Guelph, Canada.

Food Trend Director
Associate Developer
Krispy Kreme
Senior Scientist

Neval is responsible for the product development of the Nutrition Portfolio North America R&D Center Unilever, and she drives Innovation Projects as Senior Scientist and Technical Project Leader. Neval has also a wide range of experience in the Confectionery & Oil and Paper Industry R&D – Technology – Quality –Supply Chain and she has a Six Sigma Black Belt certification and managed Lean Projects in companies. Neval has a big passion for Plant-Based Nutrition Portfolio and Sustainability. For more information please connect with Neval on Linkedin:

Director Product Development Company
Fazer Confectionery

Niina Wredfors (PhD; Food Technology, Sensory Evaluation) holds the position of Director, Product Development at Fazer Confectionery, where she is responsible for overseeing the sugar candy bags, pastilles, and chewing gum categories. Additionally, se serves as the lead of the Sensory and Consumer Insight team within Fazer Confectionery. In collaboration with the product development team, Niina Wredfors ensures that the Facer Confectionery’s candy product portfolio aligns with the company’s strategy. This involves developing new product recipes that prioritize plant-based and sustainable outcomes, all while ensuring the highest standards of product quality and consumer preference. Additionally, Niina Wredfors has successfully established the Sensory Evaluation and Consumer Insight team, which plays a crucial role in validating novelty ideas, conducting consumer testing and performing sensory profiling for Fazer Confectionery products. Currently R&D organisation is conducting a comprehensive study in co-operation with the Operations-team to identify the most suitable production technologies for successful implementation of new raw materials and the constant supply of irresistible novelties. During her free time, Niina enjoys knitting and taking long walks with her dachshund, Mr. Vito, while enjoying audiobooks.

Director of Research and Development
Channel Fish

Richard Morin is the Director of Research and Development at Channel Fish Processing. He has been in the food industry for 25 years from restaurant dishwasher to Chef de Cuisine to R&D professional. Specializing in flavor development and product launching, Rich uses that experience to bring new products to market that have interesting flavor profiles and superior texture. By focusing on giving the end customer the best product, Rich has been able to put his experiences of professional cooking to good use. When he’s not at CFP, Rich is an avid hockey player and wood worker and loves spending time sitting around the dinner table with his wife and two kids.

SVP – Analytics and Insights
Vice President R&D
Lenny & Larry’s