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PARIS, 18th February 2014 — The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), managed by The Consumer Goods Forum, announced today the appointment of Cenk Gürol, Group Chief SCM Officer, Aeon CO., LTD & President, Aeon Global SCM CO., LTD, Japan to succeed Yves Rey, Corporate Quality General Manager, Danone as its Board Chairman. Cenk will take over the leadership of GFSI as of March 2014.

  • Cenk Gürol, Group Chief SCM Officer, Aeon CO., LTD & President, Aeon Global SCM CO., LTD, Japan takes over Chairmanship of the GFSI Board of Directors.
  • Mike Robach, Vice President, Food Safety, Quality and Regulatory Affairs, Cargill, USA and Neil Marshall, Global Director, Quality & Food Safety Strategy, Policy and Programs, The Coca-Cola Company, USA have been elected as Vice Chairs of GFSI.

As Chair of the GFSI Board for the last two years, Yves Rey has played an important role in setting the direction for the Initiative. Under his chairmanship, GFSI has progressed rapidly with its geographical expansion strategy, including the set-up of the first GFSI Local Groups. Mr Rey has been a strong advocate on the importance of collaboration between the private and public sectors and has contributed to building partnerships with key stakeholders.

Commenting on the appointment, Yves Rey said: “The GFSI Board is delighted that Cenk has agreed to take up this role. The Initiative has gained colossal momentum over the last few years in many countries. Among other objectives, GFSI has a key role to play in supporting smaller suppliers in different parts of the world to build their capacity and ensure the development of effective food safety management systems. Given the growing importance of Asia and its role in the global supply chain, GFSI needs to grow its presence in this part of the world. I believe that Cenk will be instrumental in leading GFSI’s work both in Asia and around the world.

Cenk added, “Over the years, GFSI has been instrumental in mapping the food supply chain and substantially improving it through collaboration with key stakeholders to accomplish real change and continuous improvement. I am honoured to be appointed as the GFSI Chair and look forward to working with the leading food safety experts to carry this work forward. GFSI is uniquely positioned to drive progress in the field of food safety globally and I’m convinced that together we can achieve tremendous results.

Cenk Gürol will become the seventh Chairman of the Global Food Safety Initiative since its foundation in 2000. Yves Rey will continue to serve on the GFSI Board of Directors.

In addition, Mike Robach, Vice President, Food Safety, Quality and Regulatory Affairs, Cargill, USA and Neil Marshall, Global Director, Quality & Food Safety Strategy, Policy and Programs, The Coca-Cola Company, USA have been elected as Vice Chairs of GFSI.

Showing his full support to the newly appointed Vice Chairs, Yves Rey shared “The GFSI Board will be greatly strengthened by the commitment of Mike Robach and Neil Marshall. The combined expertise, experience and enthusiasm of GFSI’s new leadership will be key to continue the development of GFSI as the world’s leading business-driven food safety collaboration platform.

Cenk Gürol joined Aeon in 1996 and since then he has held a variety of positions in different areas including perishable foods systems development, B2B solutions development, optimization and standardization of the supply chain. He joined Aeon Global SCM in 2006 initially becoming the General Manager of the Supply Chain Management Re-Engineering Department and in 2011 became the President of Aeon Global SCM. In March 2012 he was appointed as Chief SCM Officer of the Aeon Group, responsible for all Global SCM and fresh foods production related areas. He is leading the GFSI movement within the Aeon group with the mission of creating a safe food chain across all Asian markets to deliver safe food for the customers.
Cenk plays a leadership role at The Consumer Goods Forum, not only with GFSI but also within the CGF Supply Chain Committee. Cenk has also been very active within the Global Standards 1 (GS1) network, playing a key role within the Aeon group in all the global areas he is involved in.

Mike Robach joined Cargill in January of 2004 to lead the company’s corporate food safety and regulatory affairs programs. Since that time, Mike has increased the department’s scope to include animal health and quality assurance. He continues to refocus the department toward global efforts in line with Cargill’s vision of being the global leader in nourishing people.
Mike is on the Board of Directors for Safe Supply of Affordable Food Everywhere (SSAFE) and a member of numerous organizations and committees including the Scientific and Regulatory Affairs Council Executive Committee for the Grocery Manufacturers Association, the International Association of Food Protection, and the American Society for Microbiology. Mike has worked with the World Organization of Animal Health (OIE) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on harmonized animal health and food safety standards. He has worked closely with the USDA and FDA regarding food safety policy, HACCP, and regulatory reform based on science.

Neil Marshall joined the Coca-Cola system in June 1999 for Coca-Cola Enterprises Ltd in the UK. Since then, he has held several Quality and Supply Chain technical lead roles within the UK and Europe before moving to a global position in Atlanta, USA in 2009. Neil’s responsibilities include defining global strategy, policy, programs, requirements and initiatives for quality and food safety to ensure product integrity, whilst reducing risks across the supply chain.
Neil led a global Food Safety project team in 2007-08 to mitigate supply chain risks prior to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, was the technical crisis management lead for the 2010 South Africa World Cup and for the 2012 London Olympics. Neil also led the development of a collaborative food and packaging industry steering group responsible for the development of PAS 223: Prerequisite Programs and Design Requirements for Food Safety for Food Packaging which was published in July 2011. Neil has been a longstanding member of the GFSI Technical Working Groups and is also a Board member of Safe Supply of Affordable Food Everywhere (SSAFE).


The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) is a business-driven initiative for the continuous improvement of food safety management systems to ensure confidence in the delivery of safe food to consumers worldwide. GFSI was launched in 2000 following a number of food safety crises when consumer confidence was at an all-time low. Its collaborative approach to food safety brings together international food safety experts from the entire food supply chain at technical working group and stakeholder meetings, conferences and regional events to share knowledge and promote a harmonized approach to managing food safety across the industry.
For more information, please visit www.mygfsi.com

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