Dr. Shannon Hood-Niefer has worked in the food industry for over 20 years gaining experience in developing new food products, assisting entrepreneurs start food companies, and implementing innovative solutions in food companies. As the Vice President of Innovation and Technology, her primary role is to strategize technologies to be adopted and to help food companies work with non-traditional ingredients and innovative solutions. She is passionate about agriculture and the role food plays in health, community, family, and entertainment. Outside of her profession, family and sport plays an integral part of her life. Shannon loves to be outside, whether it be cycling, running, hiking, skiing or backpacking.
Consumers are more interested in the impact of nutrition on health resulting in an increase in the consumption of plant-based foods. The plant-based foods sector grew 31% in two years (2017-2019; Plant Based Foods Association) This sector is predicted to grow over 13% in 2020. To keep up with this growth, food companies of all sizes are developing new products and new product categories. In this presentation, Shannon will discuss the impact of food processing and product development on innovation and diversification of plant-based foods.