Rockford, IL – December 3, 2015 – Representatives from Petfood Industry magazine have announced Frank Yiannis, Vice President of Food Safety for Walmart, will deliver the opening session on March 30, 2016, officially leading off the 5th edition of the conference. Yiannis will present why pet food manufacturing companies need to develop and maintain a food safety culture. Petfood Forum Asia 2016 is to be held at BITEC in Bangkok, Thailand, co-located with VICTAM Asia 2016.

Yiannis_F_2Yiannis will provide insights on his work with behavior-based food safety, how pet food companies can adopt these principles and why they should. He also will discuss The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI, of which Walmart is a member) and how the organization, which was established under Belgian law in May of 2000 and is managed by The Consumer Goods Forum, maintains a scheme to benchmark food safety standards for all food manufacturers globally (including pet foods and treats) as well as farm assurance standards. This, in turn, helps foster continuous improvement in food safety management systems to ensure confidence in the safe delivery of food to consumers.

In other sessions, Mariko Takemura, an analyst from Euromonitor International will provide an update on the global and Asian pet food markets, while Kadri Koppel, PhD, assistant professor for Kansas State University’s Department of Human Nutrition will share research on what Thai dog owners look for in the appearance of dry dog food, compared with consumers in other parts of the world. Sessions on pet nutrition include the relevance of changes in gut microbes for pet health, by Emma Bermingham, PhD, senior scientist with AgResearch Ltd., and optimum vitamin nutrition for dogs and cats, by Jeff Alix, global pet nutrition marketing manager for DSM Nutritional Products. Andrew Mallison, general director of IFFO Ltd., will address fish-based pet food ingredients; Isabelle Guiller, global research and innovation director for Diana Pet Food, offers insights into identifying relevant indicators of pet food palatability; and Galen Rokey, director of process technology for Wenger Manufacturing’s companion animal division, will explain how to automate critical pet food production tasks.

“It was essential to select a keynote who can convey the importance of establishing a food safety culture, especially in a fast growing and emerging market like the Southeast Asia pet food manufacturing audience,” said Debbie Phillips Donaldson, Editor-in-Chief of Petfood Industry. “Selecting someone with a recognizable name and company, like Frank Yiannis, has broad appeal and his focus on food safety is a global topic of critical importance. We want our conference to provide education on subjects that help support the pet food industries of this region of the world, so they can continue to grow their businesses.”

Petfood Forum Asia is a conference for the Southeast Asia pet food and pet treat industry featuring industry experts presenting the latest research and information on the pet food market, pet nutrition, pet food palatability, processing, new product development and more. Attendees are provided the ability socialize and network with industry peers from throughout Southeast Asia and to meet with prospects, schedule project update meetings on site with customers and meet new leads thru networking events.

About Petfood Forum & Petfood Industry
Petfood Forum is organized and hosted by Petfood Industry magazine ( Both are owned by WATT Global Media, a content company founded in 1917 that provides exceptional business content and solutions to the agribusiness industry. As an industry innovator, WATT Global Media has connected buyers and sellers in the poultry, pig, animal feed and pet food industries through its media channels for more than 95 years (

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Nancy Batio, Director of Marketing
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