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June 22, 2017, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm

Global Food Trends in 2017: Nutrition, Quality & the Future of What We Eat

Vue Columbus

95 Liberty St, Columbus, OH 43215

Speaker: Amie Heap & Fabien Robert

Six months ago, an article in National Geographic predicted that 2017 could be a “pivotal one for the future of food.” One need only to take a quick survey around the world to see how varied and complex our current global food issues are.

In Mexico, sugar-laden diets have led to the highest rates of obesity in the world and diabetes has become the number one killer in that country. The world’s most populous country, China, is shifting its food security policy from one of preparing for basic survival during famine to one that focuses on how to provide a rising middle class with higher-protein diets and how to leverage technology to help meet this demand. In South Sudan, a young country plagued by war and drought, the United Nations formally declared famine in 2017 for the first time in over six years. Here in the United States, roughly fifty percent of all produce is thrown away; globally, that figure is about one-third, enough to feed two billion people.

According to Food and Agriculture Organization, food security is: “when all people, at all times, have physical, social and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.”

The Columbus Council on World Affairs invites you to join a dialogue about these and other topics as we consider the state of global food issues.

To help us put these critical topics into context, we welcome the following distinguished guest speakers to lead our discussion:

Fabien Robert is the Director of the Nestlé Food Quality Assurance Center in Dublin, Ohio.

Amie Heap is the Director, Health Policy, Education, and Alliances at the Abbott Nutrition Health Institute in Columbus, Ohio.


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Amie Heap

Director of Health Policy, Education, and Alliances

Abbott Nutrition Health Institute

Amie serves as the Director of Health Policy, Education and Alliances and as the Director of the Abbott Nutrition Health Institute. In this capacity she leads collaborations with international partners to create education resources that assist healthcare professionals, and the populations they serve, on a global level. As part of this role, Amie coordinates partnerships with international organizations working to address the challenge of identifying, preventing, and treating malnutrition at all levels of healthcare systems.

Prior to joining Abbott, Amie served as the Senior Nutrition Advisor in the Office of HIV/AIDS in the Bureau of Global Health at the United States Agency for International Development. In this position Amie provided technical assistance to 30+ PEPFAR and USAID country programs implementing global HIV/nutrition/food security programs. She also served as the HIV/nutrition strategic information liaison to the Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator.

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Fabien Robert

Director of the Food Quality & Assurance Center


Fabien Robert holds the role of NQAC Director at the Nestlé Quality Assurance Center in Dublin, OH, where he manages a 40 million annual income laboratory with 250 employees in the field of food testing. Mr. Robert has worked for Nestlé for 17 years, dedicated to the enhancement of the quality of life and contributing to a healthier, sustainable future. His past positions within Nestlé have included the Analytical Services Manager and Food Safety Platform Leader in CO-QM, Project Manager in the corporate Nestle Nutrition Operation department, and Project Manager in the corporate Regulatory and Scientific Affairs department.

The work that Mr. Robert and Nestlé invest are in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, by focusing on three overarching ambitions for 2030: (1) Help 50 million children live healthier lives, (2) Help to improve 30 million livelihoods in communities directly connected to Nestlé’s business activities, and (3) strive for zero environmental impact in Nestlé’s operations.

Mr. Robert is a graduate of the University Claude Bernard Lyon 1 in France, where he earned, amongst others, his Ph.D in Organic Chemistry with best honors. Following his university completion in France, Mr. Robert earned his post-doctorates in Bio-Organic Chemistry and Organometallic Chemistry from Université de Genève/Sciences II et III in Switzerland. In additional to his formal education and professional feats, Mr. Robert speaks French (native tongue), English, Spanish and German.