ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS 2016
Boston Consulting Group (Hong Kong)
Youchi Kuo leads Boston Consulting Group’s (bcg) China Centre for Customer Insight. The centre develops various proprietary databases and reviews Chinese consumer megatrends on an annual basis. Youchi has 10 years’ experience with bcg, where her work has covered various industries, including consumer products, retail, durables and financial services. She also has experience with a wide range of demographic segments, such as middle class, female and youth consumer groups.
Ray He is the general director of Alibaba Group’s Tmall Fresh. Tmall Fresh brings high-quality fresh food to its customers across China, in the process providing solutions for the global fresh produce industry to sell online in the People’s Republic.
Loren Zhao is co-founder of Shanghai-based Fruitday, one of China’s leading fresh fruit e-commerce companies. Before joining Fruitday, Loren was an industry analyst with ISuppli Research. During his five years at ISuppli, Loren was in charge of the analysis of China’s telecommunications market covering the segment of mobile networks, broadband and optical equipment. Loren graduated from Shanghai University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Telecom Engineering in 2001.
Garry Langford is chairman of Pink Lady Development, a joint venture company between Apple & Pear Australia (apal) and Star Fruits,
apal’s EU master licensee. He has been working at apal since 1997 and manages international licensing of apal’s Pink Lady trademarks and new market development for the Pink Lady apple brand. He is also director and manager of the International Pink Lady Alliance. Garry is a founding director of Prevar, a joint venture company established to contract Plant and Food Research New Zealand to produce new apple and pear products that Prevar then licenses in Australia, New Zealand and internationally.
Marc Peyres is director of export sales at Blue Whale. Marc is responsible for the company’s overseas activities, including sales to Asia, the Middle East, Africa and North America, along with Spain and Portugal. He joined Blue Whale after finishing university and has 24 years’ experience in the fresh fruit business. Marc has played a leading role in building Blue Whale’s presence in South East Asia, with the company now exporting around 25,000 tonnes of fruit to the region each year – mainly apples and small volumes of kiwifruit.
Hisao Takeda is president of Tokyo-based Yamano & Associates. Hisao represents a number of overseas food and beverage manufacturers in Japan, assisting their market entry, market expansion and supporting marketing activities. Yamano & Associates has established long-term relationships with key players in the Japanese fresh produce industry, such as importers, produce wholesale marketers, national and regional retailers and food service operators.
Yasuhiko Chiba is general manager of the produce planning department within the food merchandising planning section for leading Japanese retailer Aeon. Yasuhiko began his career at Aeon (formerly known as Jusco) in 1988 and has been in the fresh produce business since 2008. Yasuhiko’s current role is focused on leading strategic produce planning and merchandise planning for Aeon, including its purchasing and sales plans.
Hamish Robison is operations manager at Zespri Japan. He oversees a small core Zespri team and an assortment of contractors nationwide. Hamish is responsible for the shipping schedule and storage of all New Zealand-grown kiwifruit that comes into Japan, as well as Japanese-produced Zespri Gold and SunGold kiwifruit. Zespri Japan imports more than 65,000 pallets each year, on a mix of charter and container vessels. Hamish is responsible for ensuring all imported fruit meets Zespri’s quality standards. He comes from a retail background in New Zealand and started working for Zespri in Japan 15 years ago.
Matahari Putra Prima (Indonesia)
John Glover is chief merchandise and marketing officer at Matahari Putra Prima. The Indonesian retail group operates the Hypermart hypermarket chain. A veteran of the food retail business, John has spent more than 20 years living and working in Asia. He worked for Metro Group for around ten years in various roles, including director of food buying and merchandising at Metro Cash & Carry Vietnam and vice-president and regional head of procurement and customer marketing for Metro Cash & Carry Asia. Prior to that, he worked in senior positions with ParknShop in Hong Kong, Hero Supermarkets in Indonesia and Royal Ahold Asia Pacific.
Liu Mau Wah is co-chairman of the Joy Wing Mau Group. Mau Wah was the founder of leading Chinese fruit supply chain company Golden Wing Mau, which merged with vertically integrated fruit supplier Joyvio in 2015. The amalgamated company, Joy Wing Mau, has positioned itself as the largest fruit company in China. Mau Wah has more than 30 years’ experience in the international fresh produce business, having first started exporting and promoting Chinese fruit varieties to foreign countries in the 1990s.
Ritin Malhotra is a senior business development consultant at Euromonitor International. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management and has worked with several key players in the food and agribusiness industry across Asia-Pacific to identify and develop new business opportunities. Ritin has represented Euromonitor at various conferences across the Asia-Pacific region, including events coordinated by government organisations such as the Health Promotion Board of Singapore.
Jasper Ong is the director of marketing and business development at Myanmar Golden Produce, Myanmar’s leading exporter of fresh fruit and vegetables. Jasper’s role focuses on developing the company’s global export strategy and working with import partners to send them the freshest produce from Myanmar. Jasper also oversees quality control procedures and develops quality improvement frameworks for growers and supply chain partners.
Ryan Au is Pink Lady Development’s South East Asia regional brand development manager. Based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Ryan has several years’ experience in marketing and promotion of fresh produce. His main focus is on supporting the marketing and development of Pink Lady apples in the South East Asia region.
Neil Barker is managing director of bgp International. The Melbourne-based company markets leading brands from Australia, Egypt, California, Pakistan, Turkey, and South Africa, with offices in Australia, California, India and Egypt. The business is focused on year-round supply of citrus, grapes, stonefruit and vegetables to markets throughout Asia, India and the Middle East. Neil has also played an active role in citrus industry committees aimed at ensuring viable and sustainable citrus growing.
AISS Corporation (Japan)
Satoru Aoyama is chief executive of Tokyo-based importer aiss Corporation. Satoru has 15 years’ experience in the Japanese produce industry and has helped establish aiss as a prominent importer and marketer of offshore produce. aiss procures its produce from countries across the globe and supplies wholesale markets and retailers across Japan.
Jan Doldersum is the marketing and business development manager of Rijk Zwaan. The current focus of Jan’s role is on strengthening retail partnerships, business development, marketing, brand management, product development and innovation. Jan has been working for Rijk Zwaan for more than 19 years in several positions and countries. From 2009-2013 he lived in China and was responsible for business development in the fresh produce chain in Asia.
Lain Jager is chief executive of Zespri. Lain joined the New Zealand kiwifruit marketer in 1999 as human resources manager and was promoted to general manager – supply chain in 2004. Lain was appointed acting chief executive in 2008, and chief executive in December 2008. Before joining Zespri, Lain served as the director of human resources at the Sheraton Auckland and prior to that he was the executive development manager for Pacific Steel. Lain holds a Master’s Degree in Psychology and Philosophy from the University of Waikato.
Alejandro Garcia Huidobro is the owner and ceo of Chilean grower-exporter Exportadora Prize. Based in Requinoa, Prize is currently ranked among the top four cherry exporters from Chile. Alejandro established the company in 2006 and has rapidly expanded its product portfolio to cover a wide range of fruits, stretching throughout the Chilean season, including blueberries, kiwifruit, cherries, apples, peaches, nectarines, table grapes, plums, avocados, citrus and pears.
Neil Maffey is chief merchandising officer of Sam’s Club China. Neil joined the company as vice-president of merchandising in 2013 from Walmart’s Best Price club business in India. Neil has more than 30 years’ experience in senior executive positions with leading global retailers, including Walmart, Spinneys, Watsons Malaysia, Tesco Lotus and Costco. He spent 12 years with Costco Wholesale, including eight years in the UK where he was general manager of fresh foods. He then moved to Costco Korea, where he was commercial vice-president between November 2001 and May 2005.
Lyndon Morant is head of strategy for Japan, South Korea and Taiwan with global media and marketing services company Mindshare. After joining Mindshare UK in London in 2006, Lyndon learnt the craft of media planning by working on accounts for Unilever, hsbc, LG and Zurich. Afterwards, Lyndon was appointed communications planning lead for the prestigious Nike account in China, based in Shanghai. Lyndon transferred to Tokyo in 2014 as head of strategy for Japan.
Jason Copland is general manager of tns Myanmar. He set up the business in 2012 after tns became the first global consumer insights firm to secure a licence to operate in the country. Jason has over 20 years’ consumer insights experience, more than half of which have been acquired in Myanmar. He first arrived in Myanmar in 1997 as founder and MD of Compass Research. Jason later spent a number of years in Australia working with AusHeritage and Roy Morgan Research before joining Indochina Research and then Cimigo in Vietnam.
Wipavee Watcharakorn is the managing director of leading Thai fresh fruit import company Vachamon Food. Over the past seven years, she has grown the business ten-fold. Vachamon now commands around a third of the fresh fruit import market in Thailand for key items such as New Zealand apples, Peruvian and Chilean grapes, Australian and South African navel oranges and Australian mandarins. Wipavee graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree from Mahidol University and gained an mba degree from ceibs, the leading business school in Asia located in Shanghai.
Sara Salama is commercial director of Pico Modern Agriculture. Sara’s role focuses on managing export sales as well as the Egyptian domestic market. Prior to joining Pico, Sara worked in the sales and marketing department of fellow Egyptian agri-company Daltex, which specialises in potatoes. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the Modern Science and Arts University in Cairo and a Master’s degree from Maastrict University in the Netherlands.
Ginza Sembikiya (Japan)
Mitsuru Saito is president of Ginza Sembikiya, Japan’s oldest fruit shop chain. The high-end retailer operates 14 stores, mainly located in the Tokyo area. Mitsuru joined Ginza Sembikiya in 1987 and was made president of the company in 2002. In 2008 he helped establish Patisserie Ginza Sembikiya. Mitsuru is a graduate of Komazawa University.
CK Lai is chief operating officer and executive director of Good View Group (GV Group). He is in charge of sourcing fresh produce for GV Fruits and the production facilities of fellow GV Group companies Fresh-Cut Produces and Pick n Pack. CK is an industry veteran with substantial experience in finance and natural produce sourcing. He previously worked for the Thales Group (ex Thomson-csf), a major international electronics and industrial hardware company for 22 years. He holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration and is also a fellow member of the Hong Kong Institute of the Certified Public Accountants.
Craig Stauffer is chief executive of the Vanguard International Group and a founding partner of Vanguard International. Vanguard International has been procuring, marketing, and selling fresh fruit and vegetables in Asia, the Middle East and other global markets for over 25 years, operating offices in China, Taiwan, Malaysia and Indonesia, as well as in the US, Chile, South Africa, and Europe. Last August, Vanguard International joined forces with New York-based agri-focused investment fund Blue Road Capital to establish the Vanguard International Group.