Ajay TG, Westfalia Fruit

Ajay TG

Westfalia Fruit (India)

Ajay is general manager of Westfalia Fruit India, with over ten years’ experience in the fresh produce business. He has been involved with the establishment of Sam Agri Group’s avocado project and establishing its Indian operations. Ajay comes with a background and experience in the hospitality industry and investment banking.

Ajit Bisoi, Rijk Zwaan

Ajit Bisoi

Rijk Zwaan (India)

Ajit has more than 20 years of diverse experience in agri-business, starting his journey in agri financing and moving into fruit and vegetable retail. Ajit now works in agri inputs and has been with Rijk Zwaan for four years. He has a clear understanding of consumer needs and farming linkages for a better, healthy and sustainable future.

Ambrish Karvat, Yupaa Group of Companies

Ambrish Karvat

Yupaa Group of Companies (India)

A veteran of the international fresh produce business, Ambrish has pioneered the establishment of strawberry, raspberry and blueberry production in India. Since 1989, he has actively developed the country’s berry sector, and established a tissue culture lab at his R&D centre to produce high-quality plants for Indian farmers. He is also chairman of Yupaa Group, a leading fresh fruit import and distribution company.

Anton Kruger, Fresh Produce Exporters' Forum

Anton Kruger

Fresh Produce Exporters’ Forum (South Africa)

Anton is chief executive of the Fresh Produce Exporters’ Forum (FPEF), an association which represents 95 per cent of fresh fruit exported by South Africa. His responsibilities include market access and ensuring a sustainable and profitable US$3.4bn industry. Anton is chairperson of FruitSA, serves on the Country Council of IFPA and is a past president of the Southern Hemisphere Association of Fresh Fruit Exporters (SHAFFE).

Azhar Tambuwala, Sahyadri Farms

Azhar Tambuwala

Sahyadri Farms (India)

Azhar is co-founder of Sahyadri Farms, a farmer producer organisation supplying a wide range of fresh produce to domestic and international markets. Azhar has extensive experience in the world fruit trade and holds senior positions at other companies in the industry including Seasonz International.

Desh Ramnath, Dutch Greenhouse Delta

Desh Ramnath

Dutch Greenhouse Delta (Netherlands)

In his role as director of business development at Dutch Greenhouse Delta, Desh acts as a linchpin between ambitious Indian growers and the Dutch high tech greenhouse sector. With his out-of-the-box way of thinking, Desh wants to make a profitable impact in the Indian fresh produce chain and be the driving force behind profitable business cases for growers and retailers.

Jason Morris, Pink Lady

Jason Morris

Pink Lady (Singapore)

Jason is general manager of Pink Lady. Based in Singapore, he leads the global Pink Lady business, working closely with international partners and licensees to invest in and develop the Pink Lady brand. Prior to joining Pink Lady, Jason spent 20 years at Heineken International in commercial leadership roles across Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

Jitender Lohani, DJ Exports

Jitender Lohani

DJ Exports (India)

Jitender is CEO and director of DJ Exports, which represents premium growers and shippers of fruits in India. He is a third-generation entrepreneur who has helped to revolutionise the fresh produce market in India with over three decades of experience in shipping and marketing fresh fruits. A key achievement has been his role in developing demand for Indian grapes in Asian markets including China.

John Tyas, Avocados Australia

John Tyas

Avocados Australia (Australia)

John is chief executive of Avocados Australia, the peak industry body for the Australian avocado industry. Reporting to the board of Avocados Australia, he leads all facets of the organisation and implements plans agreed with the board. John holds a Bachelor of Applied Science (Rural Technology) and has worked in the horticulture industry since 1992.

Laurent De Smedt, BelOrta

Laurent De Smedt

BelOrta (Belgium)

Laurent is head of the pome fruit division at BelOrta. Belorta is a Belgian cooperative with more than 1,000 growers specialising in fruit and vegetables. With a production of 200,000 tonnes of pears and 85,000 tonnes of apples, it is the leading cooperative in Belgium.

Navneet Daga, Superplum

Navneet Daga

Superplum (India)

Navneet is chief operating officer of Superplum, an agritech company seeking to build a first-of-its-kind digital supply chain in India with complete transparency. In addition to working to reduce fruit wastage, Superplum has a unique farm-to-shop traceability product, which enables end consumers to see the entire journey of the fruit and pay farmers for high-quality produce.

Peter McPherson, Costa Group

Peter McPherson

Costa Group (Australia)

Peter is a consulting advisor to Costa Berry International, part of Australian fresh produce grower-marketer, Costa Group. As general manager of Costa Berry International from 2016-2023, Peter led the growth of Costa’s berry business including the expansion of blueberry growing operations in Morocco, the establishment of blueberry growing operations in China, and the licensing of Costa’s genetics internationally. Peter is also outgoing president of the International Blueberry Organisaton (IBO).

Peter Snellink, Van Der Hoeven Horticultural Projects

Peter Snellink

Van der Hoeven Horticultural Projects (Netherlands)

Peter is sales director for the Indian market at Van der Hoeven Horticultural Projects. He sees great opportunity in the growing Indian market and its willingness to invest in horticulture technologies. With a background in engineering and understanding business needs as a sales director, Peter helps Indian growers in calculating high tech business cases, tailored to the needs and ambitions of the grower.

Rithish Babu, Lemonchillii Farms

Rithish Babu

Lemonchillii Farms (India)

Rithish is chief operating officer of Lemonchillii Farms. In this role, he explores new technologies and opportunities to achieve superior quality and maximum yield. Rithish’s commitment is geared towards delivering the freshest and cleanest food to customers, embracing innovation for a sustainable agricultural future.

Saurabh Raina, Reliance Retail

Saurabh Raina

Reliance Retail (India)

Saurabh is assistant vice-president of fresh for Reliance Retail. He has over 20 years’ experience in fresh food retail and wholesale. Prior to joining Reliance, he was vice-president of sales and marketing for major fresh fruit importer NGK Trading. Saurabh has also held management positions in major corporations such as Walmart, Del Monte and Tata Group.

Shardul Sheth, AgroStar

Shardul Sheth

AgroStar (India)

Shardul is co-founder and chief executive of AgroStar. He began his entrepreneurial journey in 2010 after spending eight years in the US. Upon his return, Shardul and his brother Sitanshu dedicated their career to solving challenges faced by smallholder farmers in India. Today, AgroStar is the foremost agritech company in India, serving millions of farmers across the length and breadth of the country.

Siddharth Tata, Amazon India

Siddharth Tata

Amazon Fresh (India)

Siddharth is an agribusiness professional with 18 years’ experience including time spent with farm-to-table organic vegetable start-up, Purple Chilli. In his current role as product leader for the Amazon Fresh Supply Chain, he builds cutting edge technology to deliver best-in-class customer experience on selection, in-stock, quality, and value. He also co-founded Amazon Kisan and Amazon Johari.

Sumit Saran, SS Associates

Sumit Saran

SS Associates (India)

Sumit is director of SS Associates, an international food marketing firm based in New Dehi, National Capital Region. The firm represents and markets Washington Apples, USA Pears, American Pistachios, US Cranberries, Chilean Kiwifruit, Chilean Cherries, Northwest Cherries, Chilean Walnuts, American Pecans and World Avocados in the high growth Indian market.

Tarun Arora, IG International

Tarun Arora

IG International (India) 

Tarun is director of IG International and a second-generation leader who drives the company’s growth in fresh fruit importation and agri-tech services. He manages diverse ventures, including IG Blueberries, and works to pioneer CEA technology and agroforestry for premium fruit cultivation. Tarun also directs IG’s response to climate change challenges through ESG initiatives and strategic partnerships. 

Zac Bard, Westfalia Fruit

Zac Bard

Westfalia Fruit (Global)

Zac joined Westfalia in 2000 with the establishment of Westfalia Marketing. Throughout his career Zac has been involved in developing Westfalia’s global presence and taking the company to new growing territories, such as Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe and more recently India and China. Zac is also the current chair of the World Avocado Organisation.

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