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The International Board

The Board of the Choices International Foundation comprises members from the countries of our collaboration. Current members are from the Nigerian Heart Foundation and the Chinese Nutrition Society. The Board has an independent president. The chair of the International Scientific Committee is the advisor to the Board.

Rokiah Don (Chair)

Rokiah Don is trained in Biochemistry/Physiology from the University of Westminster, London and in Community Nutrition from the University of Queensland, Australia.

She was formerly with the Nutrition and Dietetics Department at International Medical University (IMU), Kuala Lumpur. Prior to this, she was the Director of Nutrition Division in the Ministry of Health Malaysia and had served the Ministry of Health Malaysia for 35 years. As Director and Head of the nutrition profession in Malaysia, she has vast experience working inter-sectorally with various ministries, professional bodies, NGOs and food & beverage industries and collaboratively designed, developed, implemented, monitored and evaluated nutrition policies, strategies and activities to address nutrition and health-related issues in the country, especially double burden malnutrition. She chaired and participated in many technical committees for nutrition and health-related program development and the formulation of Policies/Curriculum/Guidelines/Standard Operating Procedures for nutrition/health.

She was a Council Member and is a Fellow of the Nutrition Society of Malaysia. She has been a Temporary Advisor to and worked with WHO and UNICEF, especially in the field of infant and young child nutrition. She has, for several years, led the Malaysian Delegation for participation at the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU) Meeting at the international level. Due to her tremendous contributions to the development of nutrition, locally and globally, she has been honoured with several excellent service awards from the government of Malaysia.

Prof. Dr Olugbenga Ben Ogunmoyela (Secretary)

Ben Ogunmoyela obtained a BSc (Hons) in Agricultural Biochemistry and Nutrition at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, and later the MSc and PhD degrees in Food Technology from the University of Reading, United Kingdom. He also attended the Lagos Business School as a member of the AMP-7 Class in 1997 and has attended many other leadership courses.

He was a Senior Research Officer and Head of the Crop Utilization Division at the Cocoa Research Institute of Nigeria in Ibadan, from where he moved to the University as a Lecturer. He was the Foundation Senior Lecturer and Head of the Department of Food Science and Technology, first at the University of Lagos, Abeokuta Campus, and later at the present Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, where he rose to the position of Associate Professor before proceeding to industry. His industry sojourn of 15 years started in Cadbury, Nigeria, where he served in various capacities as Technical Manager, Purchasing Manager, and Business Manager in the Production Units for ten years. He was the Project Leader for the first voluntary fortification project for a chocolate beverage in Nigeria, which was launched in 1994, and is a renowned fortification expert who led the first national survey of large-scale survey of fortified foods in Nigeria, which formed the basis of far-reaching program reforms in 2015. He is a Certified ISO-9000 Lead Auditor and was  Director of Quality Assurance at the Honeywell Flour Mills in Apapa, Lagos, where he championed the company’s efforts to develop its quality management system to become the first flour mill in Nigeria to be ISO-certified in 2005. He returned to the University system as a pioneer Professor of Food Science and Technology at Bells University of Technology, Ota, in 2006, where he was the maiden Inaugural Lecturer of the University and as the Dean of the Colleges of Food Sciences and the Postgraduate School for ten years. At various times, he was also Acting Vice Chancellor, University Orator, and Chairman of Ceremonials Committee, and pioneer Chairman of various Projects and Committees in the University. He retired at the mandatory age in September 2022 after a cumulative career of over forty-five years in research, academics, industry, and development to focus on giving back as President/CEO of his Consumer Advocacy for Food Safety and Nutrition Initiative, a Not-for-Profit Organization, which commenced activities in 2019.

He has chaired, facilitated, and participated in many technical committees for the development of food, nutrition, and health-related programs in and outside Nigeria, including participation in the International Meeting of the Codex Committee on General Principles, and has, in particular, also worked with GAIN and TechnoServe, as Senior Technical Advisor, in various programs for over 15 years. He has at various times been a Council Member of the Nigerian Institute of Food Science and Technology, NIFST, the Editor-in-Chief of the Nigerian Food Journal, NIFOJ, and a Fellow and Chairman of the Body of Fellows of the Institute. He is also an Emeritus Professional Member of the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), USA. He is also the current Chairman of the Council of the Institute of Public Analysts of Nigeria, National President of the Society of Testing Laboratory Analysts of Nigeria, and Chairman of the Food Safety Expert Advisory Committee of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC. He is a long-standing member of the Nutrition Committee of the Nigeria Heart Foundation, a long-standing Board Member of Valleumbra Flour Mills, Aba, AACE Food Processing and Distribution, Ota, Past Member of the Board of IACIU (the Institute for African Culture and International Understanding), the UNESCO Category 2 Institute at OOPL, Abeokuta, Nigeria, and a Past Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Supreme Education Foundation Schools, Lagos, Nigeria. He is also presently the Chairman of the FCCPC-Led National Task Force on Implementation of the ‘Guiding Principles for Sustainable Consumption’, and a long-standing Member of the National Fortification Alliance, presently serving as the Chair of the Country Working Group on Bouillon Fortification.

He is a recipient of several awards, including the NIFST Lifetime Achievement Award for contributions to the Development of Food Science and Technology, the FATE Foundation Volunteer of the Year Award, the Bells University of Technology Ota Award in acknowledgement of his contributions to the growth and development of the University, and the National Merit Award of the Government College of Ibadan Old Boys Association, Ibadan Nigeria. He is also an accomplished and widely cited author of over 70 peer-reviewed Journal publications, and apart from the ‘CAFSANI Consumer Pocket Guide on Food Safety and Nutrition’ which was launched during the last World Food Safety Day Celebrations in June this year, he has recently published his ‘Memoirs of A Cow Without A Tail’ on Amazon.

Prof. Dr Hans Verhagen (Treasurer)

Prof. Dr Hans Verhagen has 40 years of experience in food safety and nutrition. He is a certified toxicologist and nutritionist. He worked at Universities (Nijmegen, Maastricht, Ulster, Copenhagen), in contract research (TNO), in industry (Unilever), for the national government (RIVM), and EFSA from 2015-2020. From 2006-2015 he was a member of the EFSA-NDA panel, working on health claims and novel foods. He is a professor at the University of Ulster (Northern Ireland) and at the Technical University Denmark (DTU, Denmark). Since 2020, he is owner and consultant of Food Safety & Nutrition Consultancy in the Netherlands (https://www.fsnconsultancy.nl/).  

Dr Annet JC Roodenburg (PhD Nutrition) (Advisor)

Annet JC Roodenburg (PhD Nutrition) has been Associate Professor Nutrition and Health at HAS University of Applied Sciences, in Den Bosch/Venlo, The Netherlands since 2010.

She worked for 16 years in the food industry as a nutrition scientist on the scientific approach towards healthier foods and responsible communication in order to help consumers to make healthier choices.

Current research focus: foods, consumers, and food producers on topics such as nutrient profiling and food labelling, reformulation and food data, product development for specific target groups (elderly), tools for chefs in food service.

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