A team of experienced consultants in the field of food, science and communications is responsible for the coordination of all activities and communication of Choices International, consisting of an international secretariat and a regional East Asian Secretariat.
The International Secretariat consists of:
- Rutger Schilpzand
- Sylvie van den Assum
The East Asian Secretariat consists of:
- Snigdha Misra
- Chu Wai Puay
- Pratiwi Hartono
As Managing Director of Choices International, Rutger Schilpzand supports national healthy food choice initiatives, based on the Choices program, worldwide. Rutger (1953) studied Human Nutrition at Wageningen University and has worked as a freelance science writer, a campaigner for OxfamNovib and for consumer organisations. As such, he was the initiator of the Clean Clothes (Schone Kleren) Foundation and member of the board of the Max Havelaar Foundation. Rutger Schilpzand is co-founder of the Ghana Schoolfeeding Programme that now serves 1,5 million meals daily to Ghanaian school kids. He has worked as a strategic consultant in nutrition at Schuttelaar & Partners, where he initiated two business units with 1M€ annual turnover. In 2005 he initiated the Future of Food seminars initiative, a series of international high level seminars about future developments in the global food system. Rutger is co-author of “De strategische Stakeholderdialoog”, the first study into experiences and expectations from business and with stakeholder dialogue in the Netherlands.
Sylvie van den Assum
Sylvie van den Assum is the Scientific Secretary of Choices International. She coordinates the science-based secretariat actions, supports the use and development of the international Choices criteria and takes care of the communication towards external stakeholders.
Sylvie graduated from Wageningen University in 2013 where she studied Nutrition and Health. For two years, Sylvie worked as a scientist at Danone Nutricia research in The Netherlands and Singapore, studying the effects of early life nutrition on growth and development. At Erasmus Medical Center (Rotterdam, NL), Sylvie has worked as Communication Officer for the Generation R study and was project manager for an international EU funded project. She was on the organizing committee of DOHaD 2017, a congress on the developmental origins of health and disease.
Snigdha Misra is the Senior Advisor to the Choices regional secretariat for East-Asia, covering China and the ASEAN region. She will collaborate closely with the Choices regional secretary for East-Asia and East-Asia Industry Support Group. Snigdha has a Masters and an MPhil in Food Science and Nutrition. She has been awarded a PhD in Nutrition from India. She has a vast experience in academia spanning more than 25 years.
Her research interests are in Public Health Nutrition inclusive of Maternal and Child Health and Geriatric Nutrition. She is engaged in active research and supervised many undergraduate and postgraduate students. She has worked with the food industry to improve the health of the community. She is committed to a strong foundation for a transformational change in the health of the community through professional and personal rapport. She is currently the Head of Nutrition and Dietetics, International Medical University, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Chu Wai Puay
Wai Puay will act as Choices Regional secretary for East Asia, covering China and the ASEAN region. She will collaborate closely and in alignment with the Choices Senior Advisor for East-Asia and with the East-Asia Industry Support Group.
Wai Puay graduated with a Masters degree in Food Science from The University of Leeds. For the past 20 years, she has been supporting and coordinated multi projects for a number of international companies in the pharmaceutical and food industries. These activities brought her to different East-Asian countries. By working with Choices she wants to contribute to the improvement of dietary habits in the region.
Pratiwi is representative of Choices International for Indonesia. She graduated from Wageningen University, The Netherlands with a Master Degree in Epidemiology and Public Health Nutrition. She had been a staff of the Indonesia Scaling up Nutrition (SUN) Movement Secretariat in the Ministry of National Development Planning. She also worked on research in the area of micronutrient deficiencies, stunting, and IYCF practices.
Having started in the area of fighting undernutrition, she is aware that the challenges of the double burden of malnutrition are approaching. Joining Choices International as an independent consultant, she wants to work together with Indonesian stakeholders to not only tackle malnutrition problems but also improving society’s healthy diet.