It's a pleasure to address so many readers in my first months as Chair of the Global Food Safety Initiative. It's been a great start to 2014 for GFSI with 1106 delegates at our Global Food Safety Conference in California! I would personally like to thank Frank Yiannas who chaired the Programme Committee, and all of the Programme Committee members who took so much time out of their day jobs to make the programme such a success. We have had extremely positive feedback from delegates and will be reviewing it over the next months to see how we can build on this success ahead of our first ever Global Food Safety Conference in Asia in 2015. On behalf of the GFSI Board of Directors, I would like to thank everyone who attended the event and shared knowledge around such an important and pre-competitive issue. We are delighted that the Global Food Safety Conference has become such an eminent platform to share knowledge and create a global network of experts whose shared purpose is to deliver safer food to customers around the word. Our conference theme of "One World, One Safe Food Supply" is on the right path!
I would like to thank Yves Rey for his leadership of the Initiative over the last two years and for contributing so successfully to the expansion of GFSI's global reach while remaining effective locally. Along with the new GFSI Board Vice-Chairs, Mike Robach and Neil Marshall, as well as the rest of the GFSI Board, we commit to doing our best to further GFSI as a 'glocal' movement and continuing to share openly the progress we are making, particularly in the areas of capacity building and regulatory affairs. We would also like to further measure our success - the GFSI Efficacy Study has demonstrated GFSI's successes but also highlighted areas where we need to improve, and the Board will be taking a close look at these areas over 2014. As the Board of the GFSI, we will revisit governance, strategy and stakeholder engagement in our May meeting and will make the GFSI process more accessible and more effective both on a global and local scale.
Thanks to your continued support of GFSI, we look forward to working together to make our food supply chain even safer.
GFSI Board Chair
Vice President, AEON Co., Ltd., Japan