Conference speakers

Suresh DeCosta

Director of Food Safety, Lipman Family Farms (US) & Technical Committee, Center for Produce Safety (US)
Suresh DeCosta is director of Food Safety at Lipman Family Farms in the US and is internationally recognized for his expertise in food safety management and driving industry change.  At Lipman Family Farms Suresh DeCosta has implemented a number of risk reduction strategies for Listeria monocytogenes, based on based on his prior experience at MacDonald’s and Fresh Express (US).

Dr Robert Premier

Microbiologist/Food Scientist, Global FS Pty Ltd/PMFresh
Dr Robert Premier has over 20 years’ experience in microbiological food safety, in particular Listeria monocytogenes, and has a strong track record in improving food safety practices in the Asia Pacific.

Dr Craig Shadbolt

Manager, Food Incident Response, Biosecurity & Food Safety Compliance, NSW Department of Primary Industries
Dr Craig Shadbolt coordinates the NSW DPI state and national responses to food incidents, including the recent melon associated outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes.

Brendan Hayes

Senior Product Technologist, Coles
Brendan has more than 25 years’ experience in the fresh produce sector a grower, buyer and technologist. His current work at Coles is improving growing standards of fresh produce to improve food safety for the Australian consumer.

Andrew Shaw

Environment Coordinator, AUSVEG
Andrew Shaw works with the Australian vegetable industry to integrate sustainable production and resource management practices.

Joe Ekman

Technical Director, Fresh Produce Group
Joseph Ekman is Fresh Produce Group’s Technical Director and leads the team responsible for food safety and quality compliance, product technology and quality control.

Professor Robyn McConchie

Professor of Horticulture, University of Sydney
Robyn is director of the ARC Training Centre for Food Safety in the Fresh Produce Industry which manages nine projects across the supply chain, and trains the next generation of industry-ready food safety researchers.

Dr Mark Bradbury

Post-doctoral research associate, University of Sydney
Mark has joined the ARC Training Centre for Food Safety in the Fresh Produce Industry as a post-doctoral associate and previously worked at CSIRO. He has food safety expertise in the fields of microbiological and molecular analysis.

Dr Haryiye Bozkurt Cekmer

University of Sydney, Post-doctoral research associate
Hayriye received a Fullbright scholarship to undertake a PhD in food safety focusing on predictive modelling and thermal inactivation. She is currently a post-doctoral associate in the ARC Training Centre for Food Safety in the Fresh Produce Industry.

Dr Anthony Kachenko

R&D Team Leader, Hort Innovation
Anthony Kachenko is the Research & Development Team Leader at Horticulture Innovation Australia. Anthony manages research and development, including the health, nutrition and food safety portfolio.

Steve Hather

Director, The Recall Institute
Steve Hather was a co-author of the international standards for product safety (ISO 10377) and product recall (ISO 10393) and has over 25 years of experience in risk management, product recall and crisis management.

Kashif Ahmed

Kashif Ahmed manages operations of seven testing laboratories around Australia. Kashif has been in the testing industry for over 25 years, providing technical and operational management for major commercial and manufacturing testing laboratories servicing the food, agricultural, environmental and therapeutic goods industries.

Professor Charleoboi

Dr. Sylvain Charlebois is a Professor in food distribution and policy in the Faculties of Management and Agriculture at Dalhousie University in Halifax. He is also the Interim Scientific Director of the Institute of Agri-food Analytics, also located in Halifax. He is as well the former Dean of the Faculty of Management at Dalhousie University. Before joining Dalhousie, he was affiliated with the University of Guelph’s Arrell Food Institute, which he co-founded. While at the University of Guelph, he was also the Associate Dean of Research for the College of Business and Economics.