Our Speakers

2 days with 9 sessions, +10 speaker and 14 supplier. At our first online event WeFood Future, we gathered our most important food industry partners, who shared more than just their knowledge with us.

Albana Rama, Founder of The Rainforest Company

Albana Rama, Founder of The Rainforest Company
Albana is the founder and CEO of The Rainforest Company – formerly known as Amazonian. The company has started its mission to provide 100% natural foods products to change lives of its customers all around Europe in 2016.

Starting as pioneers іn thе superfood industry, they are determined to hеlр реорlе еаt healthier. Their organic and vegan products distinguish themselves by being packed with essential nutrients, low calories, low sugar, and with a high protein content. Albana did her Master (2012) of International Business with rotation to San Francisco at Hult International Business School in London. Hult International Business School belongs to the top 1% business schools of the world according to the Financial Times and The Economist. Prior to that Albana finishes her Business Economist in 2011 at University of Applied Sciences Zurich.

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Alexander Djordjevic, CEO & Co-Founder bei Foodist GmbH

Alexander Djordjevic, CEO & Co-Founder at Foodist GmbH
In 2012 Alex founded the company Foodist in Hamburg together with a friends. He became medially known through the show “Cave of the Lions” where he appeared in 2014 together with his three Foodist co-founders. The idea: once a month, customers should receive a box of high-quality, durable surprise products from the food assortment, ranging from craft beer to spreads. Today Foodist is one of the leading online food retailers in Germany and one of Germany’s best-known food startups.
In 2012 Alex finishes his BA in Business, Management and Marketing at the HSBA in Hamburg.

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Professor Dr. Bastian Halecker

Professor Dr. Bastian Halecker, Founding Partner at Hungry Ventures
Bastian’s mission is to connect people in the new food ecosystem. As a serial founder he’s well connected and valued as a thought leader for entrepreneurship and foodtech.

After passing his diploma in Business Administration at Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft Berlin (HTW) Bastian started his business 2010 career at a management consultant at Horváth & Partners before completing his PhD in Economics. In 2015 he founded Startup Tour Berlin and in 2016 NESTIM, both for organizing professional matchmaking services between startups and corporates. Since 2018 Halecker is professor for Business and Entrepreneurship at Beuth University of Applied Sciences Berlin and also founding partner of the food innovation platform Hungry Ventures.

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Deniz Ficicioglu, Co-Founder of Nordic Oceanfruit

Deniz Ficicioglu, Co-Founder of Nordic Oceanfruit
Deniz is one of the pioneers of plant-forward seaweed products.

After graduating as Bachelor of Arts in Communication in Social and Economic Contexts Deniz Ficicioglu started at Siemens Energy in Market Communication & Information before entering the Berlin food ecosystem as Head of User Acquisition at Kitchen Stories in 2016 and later as Innovation manager at HERMANN’s. 2018 she founded together with Jacob von Manteuffel Nordic Oceanfruit. The start-up develops food-specialties based on native European Seaweed as an alternative to the fishing industry. For their delicious maritime gourmet salads Nordic Oceanfruit won the FIC FOOD AWARD 2019 for Best product idea. Nordic Oceanfruit is member oft he accelerator program of KitchenTown Berlin.

Ficicioglu is co-founder, author and speaker of the most well-known German-speaking platform fructopia.de for recipes and research on fructose malabsorption and sugar-free diet and was one of 20 selected female entrepreneurs in tech participating in Grace “Accelerate Female Entrepreneurship” Summer Camp 2018.

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Dirk Schmidt

Dirk Schmidt, General Manager and Partner at Bösch Boden Spies
In June 1998, the second generation of the Schmidt owners joined the company in the person of Dirk Schmidt. Dirk started his career at Bösch Boden Spies in the Frozen Fruit Department. From 2002 onwards, he became responsible for the newly founded concentrate department and developed this new unit to a significant new business section for BBS. Dirk became a Managing Partner in 2006 , succeeding his father. As the general manager for the Frozen & concentrate business he continued the strong growth of both business units. In addition, the growing need for transparency and security led him to the establishment of a separate Quality Management department in 2008. Dirk is now working on the constant digitalization of the company besides his overall responsibilities for the Finance, Controlling & IT side of the business.

Dirk had begun his business career at Krahn Chemie GmbH in Hamburg in 1991 with an apprenticeship as a wholesale and export merchant. After completing his training, he gained sales experience for two years before completing his studies and a degree in business management with a focus on corporate management and controlling, which laid the foundation for his entry into the family business.

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Christian Schultze-Wolters - IBM Germany

Christian Schultze-Wolters, Director of Blockchain Solutions DACH, IBM
BIO is on the way …

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Emily O’Halloran, Global Impact & Sustainability, Sr. Analyst Ocean Spray Cranberries

Emily O’Halloran, Global Impact & Sustainability, Sr. Analyst at Ocean Spray Cranberries
Driven by passion and knowledge Emily O’Halloran achieved with her team, that Ocean Spray, world’s largest producer of cranberries, was actually certified as the first fruit cooperative worldwide to achieve a 100% FSA verification. As a Senior Analyst for Global Impact & Sustainability she implemented the sustainability framework and supported the 700+ family farmers by adapting the new standards.

After her masters degree in economics at Michigan State University in 2018 O’Halloran started as a Biological Technician at U.S. Forest Service before entering Ocean Spray in June 2017.

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Emmanuel Delerm - Director of Organization & Methods at Carrefour

Emmanuel Delerm, Director of Organization & Methods at Carrefour
Emmanuel Delerm is the blockchain programme director within Carrefour, one of the world’s leading food retailers with a multiformat network of 12,000 stores in over 30 countries. Early 2018, Carrefour launched the first European blockchain in productive use for food traceability. Prior to that, Emmanuel has been consulting at SAP, A.T. Kerney and 2DEGO

Emmanuel finishes his studies at Sciences Po Strasbourg in 1987.

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Fabio Ziemssen, Director Food Innovation | YGL | Speaker | Advisor | NX-FOOD (METRO AG)

Fabio Ziemssen, Director Food Innovation | YGL | Speaker | Advisor | NX-FOOD (METRO AG)
Fabio is the Founder and Director Food Innovation at NX-Food. The company stands for Next Generation Food and is THE hub of METRO AG for new food solutions. The range of NX-Food topics covers alternative protein sources, sustainable food solutions, food waste reduction, vertical farming as well as innovative and functional food concepts for gastronomy and end consumers. Founded in March 2018, NX-Food has over 800 food startups in its network and entered the list of Top-18 German innovation labs. Prior to that, Fabio spent almost 3 years at METRO AG and almost 6 years at METRO Germany. In 2020, he joined the Forum of Young Global Leaders initiated by the World Economic Forum.

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Heinz Grüne

Heinz Grüne, Managing Partner at Rheingold Instiute
As a managing partner of the famous Rheingold Institute in Cologne Heinz Grüne established the in-depth psychological research.

After finishing his studies in psychology at Cologne University he entered the Rheingold Institute as part of the founding team ramped-up the institute to a worldwide well-known institution for qualitative research.

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Dr. Helena Melnikov - Waren-Verein der Hamburger Börse e.V.

Dr. Helena Melnikov, Managing Director at Waren-Verein der Hamburger Börse e.V.
BIO is on the way …

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Jacob von Manteuffel, Co-Founder of Nordic Oceanfruit

Jacob von Manteuffel, Co-Founder of Nordic Oceanfruit
Jacob is one of the pioneers of plant-forward seaweed products.

After graduating as Master of Sciences at Georg-August-University in Göttingen von Manteufel started the Seaweed Project, which was the groundwork for Nordic Oceanfruit, a start-up he founded together with Deniz Ficicioglu. Nordic Oceanfruit develops food-specialties based on native European Seaweed as an alternative to the fishing industry. For their delicious maritime gourmet salads Nordic Oceanfruit won the FIC FOOD AWARD 2019 for Best product idea. Nordic Oceanfruit is member of the accelerator program of KitchenTown Berlin.

They are currently working on toppings and burgers designed for European taste palates. Good Impact Food which does not require soil, fresh water or fertilizers and which supports our fragile ecosystem and climate find it’s balance again.

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Julian Bube, yoga teacher

Julian Bube, Yoga Teacher
As a passionate yoga teacher Julian Bube inspires his classes since 2007 with his positive energy and infectious humour.
Born in London he studied English, sociology and sports before starting his career in yoga.

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Kay Schumacher - Bösch Boden Spies

Kay Schumacher, Head of Ingredients & Technlogy Center at Bösch Boden Spies
Kay Schumacher began his career in the food industry in 1991 as a brewer and maltster before going on to study food science and biotechnology at the Technical University of Berlin. He carried out the research for his diploma thesis at the University of Adelaide’s Waite Research Institute. For his first steps in R&D, Kay returned to the field of brewing. In 2003, he switched to the dairy industry, where he developed fruit drinks and fruit preparations for more than ten years. As the Ingredients Manager for a major dairy company, his work increasingly focused on fruit ingredients and their effects on the performance of the end product.

Kay Schumacher joined Bösch Boden Spies in 2014 as Head of Product Application and Development. In this role, he explores fruit and nut ingredients and explains them and their properties to food industry professionals.

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Lukas Neuß, Founder & Managing Director KitchenTown

Lukas Neuß, Founder & Managing Director at KitchenTown
Lukas is a true digital native with a long track-record in digital transformation of business-models in different industries. As Founder and Managing Director of KitchenTown Berlin he ramps up the new hotspot of Europe’s new food ecosystem.

While finishing his master thesis in Management and Entrepreneurship at Leuphana University Lüneburg he started his career as a digital marketing manager at Pelikan, before working as internal consultant for social media and change management at Volkswagen AG. In September 2015 Neuß moved tot he Bahlsen Group. As Head of Digital Busines Lab he explored new acceleration models as an external source for innovation. Together with his colleague Eike Kieras he convinced the family-owners to become co-founder of KitchenTown Berlin, the first European hub of the US-Accelerator in San Mateo.

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Malte Dammann, (Marketing & Sales) at Ritter Sport

Malte Dammann, Chief Demand Officer at Ritter Sport
Malte Dammann is a truly international leader with a track record in beverage & food for 20+ years. As the Chief Demand Officer of Germany‘s popular chocolate producer he‘s leading the Marketing & Sales Teams since January 2019.

After finishing his studies in economics at HSBA Hamburg School of Business Administration Dammann started his CPG-Career in the cigarette industry before entering food & beverage industry in 1996 by taking over responsibility für international marketing & sales at world-market leader Anheuser-Busch InBev. In 2001 he entered Mars for a 17 years career in marketing and sales for the european markets, finally as a Chief Consumer Officer.

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María Mascaraque, Industry Manager for Food and Nutrition at Euromonitor

María Mascaraque, Industry Manager for Food and Nutrition at Euromonitor
As Industry Manager for Food and Nutrition at Euromonitor International in London María Mascaraque has deep insights about Europe’s consumer habits and market trends.

Finishing her PhD in nutrition at Universidad Complutense de Madrid she started her research in pharmacy and hospital-business before entering medical research in 2012. In 2015 she entered the Health and Wellness department of Euromonitor London.

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Michael Rund, Managing Director bei Boesch Boden Spies GmbH + Co, KG

Michael Rund, General Manager and Partner at Bösch Boden Spies
Michael Rund joined Bösch Boden Spies in 1990 as a sales merchant. Before that, Michael completed his apprenticeship in 1985 in foreign trade and made a career in sales at the Hamburg company Martha Bünger (import, packaging, and processing of dried fruit and nuts).

In 1996, Michael was appointed third partner at Bösch Boden Spies. To enhance the company’s product expertise, additional new departments such as Marketing, Business Development as well as Product Development were created under the leadership of Michael. Today, these departments support the sales team and our customers and suppliers with analyses, communication and product concepts, as well as turnkey multi-channel campaigns. Michael is focused with on the evaluation of new long-term partnerships with suppliers all over the world and by that analyzing the global sourcing opportunities.

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Dr. Philipp Stradtmann, General Manager bei Bösch Boden Spies GmbH & Co. KG

Dr. Philipp Stradtmann, General Manager at Bösch Boden Spies
As General manager in the management board of Bösch Boden Spies Philipp is responsible for Sales, Supply, Development and Logistics. He’s an entrepreneurial senior executive with experience in various industries (Food, Healthcare, Media & Entertainment, e-Business) in combination with global players and hidden champions.

After completing his diploma in Media Management at the Hannover University of Music, Drama & Media Philipp Stradtmann started his professional career in e-Business as a project manager at iXL, a US-stock-market noted global e-Commerce agency network. Later he worked as a Managing Director for Pixelpark AG and Director eBusiness at US-Agency-Network Interpublic Group (IPG). 2004 he started working for the family-owned Oetker Group, where he was responsible for the following 10 years as managing directors in various companies in the B-to-B-food-division. 2010 he finished his PhD in strategic marketing at the University of St. Gallen (HSG). In 2014 he switched into healthcare business by joining HARTMANN medicale textile daughter company Karl Otto Braun (KOB) as CEO. In 2018 he came back to food by entering Bösch Boden Spies als general manager.

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Suzanne Hagener, Vice President Brand Marketing at Blue Diamond Growers

Suzanne Hagener, Vice President Brand Marketing at Blue Diamond Growers
Suzanne Hagener is a senior marketing executive with a strong record of building new and existing businesses at top CPG US-companies. As Vice President she’s since February 2020 in charge for the Brand Marketing at Blue Diamond Growers, world’s largest tree nut processing and marketing company.

After finishing her studies in economics at Washington University in St. Louis she entered food-business 1988 at Kraft General Foods and worked for The Hershey Company and Barilla in the following years. 2008 Suzanne Hagener entered Blue Diamond Growers as a Senior Brand Manager and managed later as Director of Brand Marketing, Non Dairy Products highly succesfull the Almond Breeze franchise, the fastest growing brand in company’s portfolio.

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Ylenia Tommasato, Brand Sustainability & Communication Manager at Barilla

Ylenia Tommasato, Brand Sustainability & Communication Manager
at Barilla

Ylania has been working in the Barilla Group for over 10 years now and is currently driving the embedding of Barilla’s sustainability commitment into brands’ strategy and managing the global Brand PR of Barilla Brand. Throughout her entire career, sustainability has been her passion and focus.
Ylenia completed her Bachelor’s Degree and Second Level Degree Philosophy and Behavioral Economics in 2010 at Libera Università Vita-Salute San Raffaele, followed by Advanced Management Program in Business Administration and Management in 2016 – 2017 at a ESCP Europe and topped by Sustainability Studies in Sustainability Marketing and Communication in 2017 at Business School Lausanne.

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Moderator

Ralf Leister - Moderator

Ralf Leister, Moderator | Speaker | Consultant | Trainer at ralfleister.com
Ralf Leister is a moderator of a wide variety of business events and speaker for the areas of Innovations, New Work, Change and Sportsbusiness. Additionally, he teaches his moderation and speaking skills in online- and offline-workshops.

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