Invited Keynote Speakers

Dr. Adrien Durand-Petiteville (University of California - Davis / USA)

Dr. Adrien Durand-Petiteville received the  M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in control theory and robotics from the University Paul Sabatier Toulouse III and LAAS-CNRS, Toulouse, France in 2008 and 2012 respectively. In 2013, he was a postdoctoral fellow and lecturer at the Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia. Since 2014, he is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Davis, USA in the Biological and Agricultural Engineering department. His research interests concern control theory and vision for robotics. Recently, he has focused his research on the development of automated solutions to the harvesting and post-harvesting problems.

Dr. Ariel Vicente (Universidad La Plata/Argentina)

Agronomist and Doctor in Biochemistry from the University of La Plata/Argentina, Master of Science in Plant Biology from the University of California/Davis and Specialist in Postharvest Management from the National University of Rosario/Argentina. Currently, Dr. Ariel is faculty at the Universidad La Plata/Argentina lecturing classes in agroindustry and including a position of Independent Researcher at CONICET from Argentina. He also is named the National Coordinator of the Section of Food Science Technology of the Ministry of Science and Technology/Argentina. Dr. Ariel is an editor of the Journal of Experimental Botany (edited in the UK) and has advised and co-advised twenty graduate and master's dissertations and five doctoral thesis and has contributed to the publication of 70 papers, 13 book chapters and 200 conference presentations in the area of food sciences, plant physiology and biology and postharvest technology. Dr. Ariel has evaluated more than 500 manuscripts submitted to 50 international journals and about 400 research projects. The Research Group of Post-Harvest Technology (GITeP), in which Dr. Ariel is involved, is dedicated to identification of the factors that contribute to the deterioration of fruits and vegetables and is in the search for methodologies to control and reduce post-harvest food losses.

Prof. Auri Brackmann (Federal University of Santa Maria, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil)

Prof. Auri Brackmann has a degree in Agronomy from the Federal University of Santa Maria (1978), a Master's degree in Agronomy from the Federal University of Pelotas (1984) and a Ph.D. in Agrarian Sciences from the University of Hohenheim (1990), Germany. He is a full professor at the Federal University of Santa Maria in the area of fruit-growing and post-harvest physiology of plant products. As a Level 1 researcher at CNPq, he works on research in refrigerated and controlled atmosphere storage, post-harvest physiology and quality of fruits, vegetables and grains. He advised 46 graduate students (master's and doctorate level), published more than 300 papers in scientific journals and has six patents that involve controlled atmosphere storage techniques. He has conceived and today coordinates the Post-Harvest Research Center of the Federal University of Santa Maria.

Dra. Claudia Fabrino Machado Mattiuz (Escola Superior Luiz de Queiroz of the Universidade de São Paulo/ ESALQ/USP)

Agronomist, B.Sc. from the Universidade Estadual Paulista Júlio de Mesquita Filho/Campus Jaboticabal, SP. Obtained Dr. degree from the same university in the area of Crop Production. Nowadays, Dr.a Claudia is faculty at the Escola Superior Luiz de Queiroz of the Universidade de São Paulo (ESALQ/USP) and her teaching and research activities are assigned to ornamental plants, landscaping and postharvest conservation of cut flowers.

Dr. Charles Wilson (World Food Preservation Center/USA)

Dr. Wilson’s career spans over 15 years in academe at the University of Arkansas and Ohio State University and 37 years with the USDA. In the last 7 years, he has been involved in the establishment of the World Food Preservation Center® LLC. .Dr. Wilson has authored over 250 scientific publication, 20 patents, and 6 books. He has been invited to organize and chair ten international symposia, to present papers at ten additional symposia, to deliver over 40 lectures in 22 states and 11 countries, and to lead seminars and discussions with students at ten major universities. He has organized three international BARD‐sponsored workshops on food preservation by biological means. He was instrumental in the development of the first EPA‐registered “biofungicide” for the control of postharvest diseases.

Dr. Eduardo Tondo (Institute of Food Science and Technology/ ICTA-UFRGS)

Dr. Tondo has a Full Professor position at the Institute of Food Science and Technology (ICTA / UFRGS), where he lectures the Disciplines of Food Microbiology and Quality Control in Food Industries. Master in Agricultural and Environmental Microbiology and PhD in Sciences (UFRGS), with a thesis in Food Microbiology and HACCP. Dr. Eduardo attended trainee programs at the Università Degli Studi di Sassari (Italy), Norvegian Veterinarian Institute (Norway), Department of Food Safety, and Food Quality at Ghent University (Belgium). Member of CODEX ALIMENTARIUS on Food Hygiene - Brazil committee. Occupied the position of Vice-Director of ICTA and as Coordinator of the Graduate Program in Food Science and Technology (PPGCTA / UFRGS). He was a Brazilian representative of the European Community VEG-I-TRADE Project from 2010 to 2014 and lecturer at the International Training Program on Food Safety Quality Assurance System and Risk Analysis, organized by Ghent University, Belgium. He is the leader of the Food Microbiology Research Group at CNPq and the Associate Editor of the Brazilian Journal of Microbiology and Coordinator of the Brazil Regional Office of the Journal of Infection in Developing Countries (JIDG). He is Professor and Graduate Advisor at master, doctorate and post-doctorate levels. Dr. Eduardo is a reviewer of 26 scientific journals and has 100 national and international scientific publications. Author of the book Microbiology and Food Safety Management Systems. He was a technical reviewer of the Food Microbiology Book (Jay, 2002), Food Safety Microbiology (Forsythe, 2002 and 2013) and standards of the European Hygienic Engineering and Design Group (EHEDG). He has been a consultant to food regulatory agencies and dozens of food industries and food service facilities. He has been a specialist for Bureau Veritas Certification for several years and has guided more than five dozen Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) in the food and feed industries.

Dr. Jeffrey K. Brecht (University of Florida/ USA)

Dr. Jeffrey K. Brecht received his B.A. in Biology from Whittier College (1979) and Ph.D. in Plant Physiology from the University of California, Davis (1984). He has been on the faculty of the University of Florida since 1984. His research program involves studies of harvesting, handling, storage, transport, and the physiological and metabolic processes related to the development, maturation and senescence of horticultural crops. He also shares statewide postharvest extension responsibilities and co-teaches a beginning graduate level course, “Principles of Postharvest Horticulture.” Dr. Brecht is the Director of the Center for Food Distribution and Retailing (CFDR) at the University of Florida, which brings agricultural scientists and engineers together with companies involved in the distribution and selling of perishable foods to conduct multidisciplinary research.  As CFDR Director, he interacts with commodity associations, packers, shippers, distributors, importers, exporters, processors and retailers to extend information regarding advances in perishable food handling. Dr. Brecht has been involved in international postharvest research and extension projects in Central and South America, Asia and Africa. He has authored over 500 technical publications including 160 refereed journal papers.  He was named a University of Florida Research Foundation Professor in 2002, a Fellow of the American Society for Horticultural Science in 2006, and an Honorary Member of the Florida State Horticultural Society in 2014.

Dr. Jun Song (Kentville Research and Development Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada/ Canada)

Dr. Jun Song is a senior research scientist at the Kentville Research and Development Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), Nova Scotia, Canada. He received his Ph.D from University Hohenheim, Germany in 1994. He then worked on his postdoctoral research on postharvest physiology and biochemistry of fruit at Michigan State University, US. He joined AAFC as a research scientist in 2001. Dr. Song specializes in the flavour biochemistry, postharvest physiology and biochemistry of fruit and vegetables to maintain and improve the quality attributes. He has established the proteomic/‘omics’ research platform at AAFC focusing on horticulture/food products. He has been leading numerous national research projects using integrated ‘omic’ techniques to reveal the control mechanism and identify biomarkers for flavour, texture, ripening and physiological disorders in fruit and vegetables. He was the elected chair of postharvest working group of the ASHS. He serves as the committee member of the USDA postharvest biology working group (NE-1336).

Prof. Jorge de Souza (Faculties of the Gorutuba Valley/ Brazil)

Agronomist graduated from ESALQ-USP with a specialization in Strategic Business Management. Director of the company Attivo Consulting & Training Ltda. Throughout his 35 years of professional life, he was Operations Leader at Zeneca and Dow AgroSciences in the area of seeds and biotechnology, actively participating in the creation of new organizational designs and work processes, using a number of management tools such as Six Sigma and Design Thinking. Agribusiness entrepreneur, he was the owner of Agropecuária Paquetá, acting as a producer in the irrigated fruit industry for domestic and foreign markets. He was president of Frutvale - Cooperativa de Fruticultores de Vale do Verde Grande and also of Abanorte - Central Association of Fruit Growers of the North of Minas Gerais in the Region of Jaíba. Actually Eng Agr. Jorge de Souza is a partner of SEBRAE in the area of fruit production and is an organizer of the Seminar EMPRETEC developed by the UN. Professor of the Administration course at FAVAG - Faculties of the Gorutuba Valley in Janaúba-MG, is currently the leader of the Apex-ABRAFRUTAS Sectorial Project in the areas of competitive intelligence and international promotion of Brazilian fruit. He is also responsible for the technical area in the same association.

Dr Luiz Antônio Fayet (Consultant for Logistics and Transport Infrastructure)

Luiz Antonio Fayet, is an economist graduated from the Faculdade de Ciências Econômicas of the Universidade Federal do Paraná (UFPR). As economist, Dr. Fayet had teaching assignments as Professor of Economic Geography at UFPR. From the faculty position Dr. Fayet occupied positions in the public administration of the state of Paraná having been President of the Bank of Development of the State of Paraná and Secretary General-Assistant of the Ministry of Finances. He held a legislative mandate as Federal Deputy for the State of Paraná from 1993 to 1997. Dr. Fayet was Director of Rural Credit and President of the Bank of Brazil and also held the position of President of the Bank of the State of Paraná and was also a member of the Board of the Port Authority of Paranaguá and Antonina as representative of the Brazilian Foreign Trade Association. Currently, Dr. Fayet works as a consultant for economic matters in the areas of strategic planning, logistics and risk analysis. He also works as a consultant for the Brazilian National Confederation of Agriculture and Livestock (CNA) for logistics and infrastructure issues and represents the Confederation at the Brazilian Foreign Trade Association, the National Association of Freight Transport Users, the National Permanent Port Commission and in the Committee for Crop Shipping of the Ministry of Agriculture and in this ministry also represents the CNA as member of the Chamber of Infrastructure and Logistics. Dr. Fayet also represents the CNA in the National Port System of the Special Secretary of Ports and in the Forum of Transport of Road Loads of the Ministry of Transport.

Dr. Luis Cisneros-Zevallos (Texas A&M/ USA)

Dr. Luis Cisneros is a Food Engineer from the National Agrarian University – La Molina, Peru. He received his M.S. and Ph.D. degree in Food Science from the University of California at Davis (USA) and is a Professor at Texas A&M University (USA). He is in the Department of Horticultural Sciences, and member of the graduate programs in Food Science and of the Molecular and Environmental Plant Science Program. He leads the Plant Bioactives & Bioprocessing Research Lab studying areas of drug discovery of bioactive compounds from plants and postharvest with emphasis in the biosynthesis of secondary metabolites in plants under stress conditions, and the interaction between microorganisms and plant surfaces. He has over 100 publications in scientific journal articles and book chapters with > 8300 citations, has graduated > 20 Ph.D. and M.S. graduate students and received over 80 visiting scientists in his lab. His research work has generated funds and collaborative contracts for > $7.9 million dollars and has given > 100 invited presentations for conferences and seminars including the US, Latin America, Europe and Asia.

Dr. Luis Luchsinger Lagos (Faculty of Agronomic Sciences of the Universidad de Chile/ Chile)

Agronomist from the University of Chile in 1988 and Ph.D. in post-harvest physiology from the University of Maryland (USA) in 1996. He is currently Associate Professor at the Faculty of of Agronomic Sciences of the Universidad de Chile. He holds the position of Vice-Director of the Centro de Estudios Poscosecha (CEPOC) of this same Faculty of Agronomy. Dr. Luchsinger is a specialist in management and post-harvest quality of export fruits and cold chain with emphasis on table grapes, stone fruits, berries, avocados and citrus. Specialist and Legal Expert for post-harvest quality of export fruits and maritime transport. Dr. Luchsinger, since 2014, is the representative of the Council of Rectors of the Chilean universities in the Codex Alimentarius Committee on Fruit and Vegetables.

Dr. Majeed Mohammed (Postharvest Education Foundation, Trinidad & Tobago)

Dr. Majeed Mohammed is a Postharvest Physiologist and Senior Lecturer at the Facultyr of Food Production of the University of the West Indies (UWI) in Trinidad & Tobago for the past 30 years. After completion of his B.Sc. in Agriculture from the UWI in 1977, he completed his MSc. and Ph.D. in Postharvest Physiology at the University of Guelph, Canada (1984) and The University of the West Indies (1992). He is currently a Board Director with the Postharvest Education Foundation (USA) as well as a member of the UN/FAO Panel of Experts from Latin America and the Caribbean on the Prevention and Reduction of Food Losses and Waste.

Dra. Marthe de Boevre (Ghent University/ Belgium)

Dr. Marthe De Boevre graduated in 2013 from the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences with the PhD-dissertation ‘Chemical risks related to food and feed containing masked Fusarium mycotoxins’. She is quality-manager (ISO/EN 17025) of the Laboratory of Food Analysis, guaranteeing the highest quality of results in both service work and research. To date, she is coordinator of the research lines ‘mycotoxins & human health’ and ‘mycotoxins & occurrence’ within the research framework of the Laboratory. Dr. Marthe De Boevre investigates the impact of multi-mycotoxins on human health, therefore she coordinates many national and international research projects. Dr. Marthe De Boevre is promoter of two defended PhD-dissertations and currently she is supervising 8 PhD´s. Her work is published in 50 A1-research papers and 3 book chapters. She is also member of the Research Council at Ghent University, and is involved in the Commission of Internationalization at the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences. She is editor of the World Mycotoxin Journal and peer-reviewer in many A1-peer reviewed journals such as Toxins, Toxicology Letters, Food and Chemical Toxicology. To date, a great focus has been set towards the coordination of MYTOX-SOUTH, together with Prof. Dr. Sarah De Saeger MYTOX-SOUTH is an intercontinental partnership to improve food security and food safety through mitigation of mycotoxins at global level. This well-structured multi-disciplinary partnership, which deals with all known aspects of mycotoxins and toxigenic mould issues, is able to provide the most adequate strategies and solutions for different stakeholders.

Dr. Patrick Brecht (Chairman PEB Commodities, Inc.)

Dr. Patrick Brecht has a Ph.D. from University of California, Davis in Plant Physiology with emphasis in postharvest biotechnology. He was a professor at Cornell University where he taught both Food Chemistry and graduate level Postharvest Biotechnology. During his career of over 35 years, Dr. Brecht has been actively involved with the domestic and international handling, storage and transportation of perishable products. Moreover, he has published recommendations for the handling, storage and transportation of perishables products. He has authored multiple publications such as Shipping Special Commodities, Marine Container Transport of Chilled Perishable Produce, Refrigerated Trailer Transport of Perishable Products, Air Transport of Perishable Products, chapters in Innovations in Transportation and Modified and Controlled Atmospheres for the Storage, Transportation, and Packaging of Horticultural Commodities, an atmosphere management book and the Mango Postharvest Best Management Practices Manual. Most recently, he co-edited and authored the ‘US FDA Food Safety Modernization Act STF Final Rule Summary and User Guide’, the Refrigerated Transportation Best Practices Guide and the FDA Food Safety Compliance guide. He also authored a soon to be published perishable cargo transport chapter in a textbook. Currently, he is re-writing and co-authoring USDA HB 669 entitled Protecting Perishable Foods during Transport by Truck. Dr. Brecht has been a guest speaker on postharvest perishables handling at conferences in Australia, Asia, Brazil, North America, Hawaii, Europe and South America. He has also given workshops involving the quality, handling, safety and distribution of perishable products. Additionally, he has conducted extensive perishable product, refrigerated and atmosphere technology and cargo handling training sessions for domestic and international perishable products surveyors and inspectors. Dr. Brecht has served in executive capacities for multinational businesses involved with perishable products and refrigeration technologies including the design and construction of ocean and land transport refrigerated equipment. Dr. Brecht was also the co-founder and former co-manager of Unifresh, LLC (now BV Fresh), an internet-based global inspection and surveying company that specializes in inspecting and surveying perishable products. Dr. Brecht is a scientific advisory board memberfor the Global Cold Chain Alliance (“GCCA”). The GCCA is comprised of the International Association of Refrigerated Warehouses, the World Food Logistics Organization, the International Refrigerated Transportation Association and the International Association for Cold Storage Construction. Currently, he is President of PEB Commodities, Inc., an international service company that specializes in consultation, workshops and forensics.

Prof. Ricardo Ayub (Ponta Grossa State University/ Brazil)

Dr. Marthe De Boevre graduated in 2013 from the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences with the PhD-dissertation ‘Chemical risks related to food and feed containing masked Fusarium mycotoxins’. She is quality-manager (ISO/EN 17025) of the Laboratory of Food Analysis, guaranteeing the highest quality of results in both service work and research. To date, she is coordinator of the research lines ‘mycotoxins & human health’ and ‘mycotoxins & occurrence’ within the research framework of the Laboratory. Dr. Marthe De Boevre investigates the impact of multi-mycotoxins on human health, therefore she coordinates many national and international research projects. Dr. Marthe De Boevre is promoter of two defended PhD-dissertations and currently she is supervising 8 PhD´s. Her work is published in 50 A1-research papers and 3 book chapters. She is also member of the Research Council at Ghent University, and is involved in the Commission of Internationalization at the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences. She is editor of the World Mycotoxin Journal and peer-reviewer in many A1-peer reviewed journals such as Toxins, Toxicology Letters, Food and Chemical Toxicology. To date, a great focus has been set towards the coordination of MYTOX-SOUTH, together with Prof. Dr. Sarah De Saeger MYTOX-SOUTH is an intercontinental partnership to improve food security and food safety through mitigation of mycotoxins at global level. This well-structured multi-disciplinary partnership, which deals with all known aspects of mycotoxins and toxigenic mould issues, is able to provide the most adequate strategies and solutions for different stakeholders.

Dr. Víctor Hugo Escalona Contreras (University of Chile/ Chile)

Dr. Víctor Hugo Escalona Contreras graduated in 1988 as Agronomic Engineer from the University of Chile. In the years 1999 up to 2003, he completed PhD studies at the Post-Harvest and Refrigeration Group (GPR) of the Universidad Politécnica de Cartagena (UPCT) and at the CEBAS-CSIC in Murcia, Spain. Later, between 2004 and 2006, he had a postdoctoral stay at the Post-Harvest Technology Laboratory of the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium and he joined in 2006 until 2007 the GPR-UPCT as a researcher under the Juan de la Cierva program of the Spanish Ministry of Education. Dr. Víctor is an academic of the Department of Agricultural Production of the Faculty of Agronomic Sciences of the University of Chile since 1999, and took office in December 2007 as the Director of the Center for Post-Harvest Studies (CEPOC). He became a Full Professor in 2017 and in recent years has coordinated public research projects, development and technology transfer in the areas of controlled production, handling of produce, as well as in the processing, conservation and transportation of fruits and vegetables. Dr. Víctor has developed University / private business cooperation projects on the application of post-harvest fresh fruit technologies and is the coordinator of the International Cyted Hortifresco network dedicated to artisanal products of the IV and V range in which the main post-harvest research groups of Latin America and Spain participate. In addition to this network, Dr. Víctor collaborates in other Ibero-American networks related to the conservation and monitoring of fruit quality during transport and commercialization. He directed more than 60 course completion essays for the Agronomic Engineering course and 20 master's dissertations in the Agricultural Sciences Program. He is a professor of the Doctorate Program of Nutrition and Food and Agroforestry Sciences of the University of Chile and author of more than 250 technical and scientific publications.

Dr. Wojciech J Janisiewicz (United States Department of Agriculture/ USA)

Dr. Janisiewicz has spent most of his three-decade long career working on alternatives to synthetic fungicides for controlling postharvest decays of fruits.  His concept of searching among natural microflora of fruit for antagonists against postharvest diseases of fruits resulted in finding the most effective bacterial and yeast antagonists.  This approach has been successfully adopted by other scientists and has been the foundation for developing more than 20 similar programs worldwide.  He developed a very effective biocontrol system on apples and pears, which resulted in developing the first bacterial commercial biocontrol product, BioSave, for controlling postharvest diseases of fruits.  The commercial use of BioSave (Jet Harvest Solution, FL) has been increasing steadily since the largescale introduction in 1996, and its use has expanded to cherries, potatoes, sweet potatoes and sugar beets, making it the most successful biocontrol product for controlling postharvest diseases of fruits and vegetables. 
Dr. Janisiewicz characterized an active compound, pyrrolnitrin, produced by one of the antagonists and demonstrated that the compound alone could be used to control postharvest diseases of fruits and cut flowers (US Patent No. 4,975,277).  Syngenta developed the analog of this compound, fludioxonil, which is currently the most widely used fungicide for control of fruit decays after harvest.  He conceptualized and demonstrated that the application of bacterial and yeast biocontrol agents developed to control postharvest decays and bacteriophages can reduce the risk of contamination of fruit with bacterial food borne human pathogens.  He also characterized bacterial and yeast microflora of plums and nectarines, developed a method for selecting antagonists against latent infections on fruits, and found, for the first time, resistance in apple fruit to postharvest fruit decays among germplasm collection of wild apples from Kazakhstan.  Most recently, in collaboration with a horticulturist and entomologists, he developed a PhylloLux technology that combines specific use of UV-C irradiation followed by application of biocontrol agents for control of strawberry diseases, mites and insects, which also has great potential for use in other crops.
Dr. Janisiewicz’s research earned him a worldwide reputation, which resulted in numerous invitations to present inaugural lectures and keynote addresses at national and international meetings; to write book chapters; interest expressed by industry to commercialize his research; requests for consulting to programs in academia and industry; and from individuals from various parts of the world who come to work in his laboratory.  His work has been described in various books including the classical text book, “Plant Pathology”, by G. Agrios, 2005, and his review article in the Annual Review of Phytopathology (2002) is among the 10 most cited articles of this journal.  He is also a recipient of the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture and the Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer award.