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ASIC 2021

28 June - 1 July 2021 - Montpelier SupAgro - France

Bandeau - ASIC 2021

Keynote lecturers

Opening Session

A Illy
The future of the coffee industry. A strategy for the Green New Deal

Andrea Illy


Andrea Illy is the Chairman of illycaffè SpA. He is co-founder of the Ernesto Illy Foundation, Chairman of the Ernesto Illy Foundation USA and Co-chairman of the Regenerative Society Foundation.
Recognized as a coffee authority, Mr. Illy’s writings are published on a regular basis, and he serves as a speaker at major conferences throughout the world. He is a passionate supporter of the stakeholder company business model, and firmly advocates for corporate responsibility as means to improve society. Among his several recognitions, Andrea Illy was named Cavaliere del Lavoro by the President of the Italian Republic.


Session Coffee Plant Science

Robert Henry
Genomics of coffee quality

Prof. Robert Henry


Robert Henry conducts research on the development of new products from plants. He is Professor of Innovation in Agriculture and was Foundation Director of the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI), a Research Institute of the University of Queensland established in collaboration with the Queensland Government.  He was previously Director of the Centre for Plant Conservation Genetics at Southern Cross University, Research Director of the Grain Foods CRC and Research Program Leader in the Queensland Agricultural Biotechnology Centre.  His current research targets plant genome sequencing for the capture of novel genetic resources for diversification of food crops to deliver improved food products. 

Karen A. Garrett
Global change: Adapting coffee pest and disease management

Prof. Karen A. Garrett


Karen A. Garrett is in the Plant Pathology Department, Food Systems Institute, and Emerging Pathogens Institute at the University of Florida. Her work addresses epidemiology, systems analysis, and analyses for decision support, including machine learning approaches. Recent work includes analysis of strengths and vulnerabilities of crop seed systems, adaptation strategies for global change, and corresponding crop breeding networks. Other work addresses the translation of microbiome analyses for improved agricultural management. Garrett is on the editorial committee for Annual Review of Phytopathology, recent Senior Editor for Phytopathology, and an elected AAAS Fellow.
More information is available at her website:


Session Sustainability, Climate Change

Piet Van Asten
Coffee and climate change

Dr Piet Van Asten


Piet van Asten is Head Sustainable Production Systems at Olam coffee. He provides technical support to Olam's coffee plantations and supply origins globally. The aim is to harness and transfer academic and farmer knowledge into productive and profitable solutions that create value along the supply chains. This requires a strong focus on the sustainability of both the natural and social environment. Climate change adaptation and mitigation form an integral part of this approach. Piet holds a PhD in agricultural and environmental sciences from Wageningen University with a strong focus on soil science, crop production, farming systems, smallholder producers, innovation partnerships and sustainable development. He worked from 1998 to 2017 as a CGIAR scientist (H-index 24) on sustainable intensification of smallholder farming systems, including coffee, cocoa, bananas and rice.


Session Biochemistry and Biotechnology of Green Coffee

Gerhard Bytof
Coffee postharvest - a crucial processing step for maintaining green coffee quality - or even more?

Dr Gerhard Bytof


Gerhard Bytof is a biologist, who has been working on coffee plants and their beans for more than 25 years. Whenever asked to explain a certain aspects of coffee quality evolution, as a plant physiologist, he usually suggests to first take the “bean-centric viewpoint” (Bradford 1998).
Originally beginning with cocoa, Gerhard Bytof started his research on caffeine-containing crops at the Technical University of Braunschweig, Germany. Already then his special focus was on putative aroma precursors and their fate during fermentation and seed germination. Further studies on cocoa and tea brought him to Japan (NIBB) and Zurich University (T.W. Baumann). He then concentrated his work more and more on coffee, and in particular on postharvest treatment, which included a wide range of field experiments in several coffee producing countries. In 2007, Gerhard Bytof joined Tchibo, Hamburg, a major European coffee roasting company. Since then, in addition to the green bean increasingly the brown bean and its compounds have been added to his coffee-related interests.


Session Coffee Chemistry & Sensory Sciences

Imre Blank
The molecular code of coffee aroma and taste

Prof. Imre Blank


Imre Blank is the Principle investigator, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, ZHAW, Coffee Excellence Center, Waedenswil, Switzerland

  • University of Münster, Germany, Food chemistry → Master degree (1979-1984)
  • Technical University of Munich, Germany, Flavor Chemistry, with Prof. Werner Grosch Ph.D. (1985-1989)
Professional Experience
  • Post doc, Coffee aroma research, TU Munich, Germany (1989-1991)
  • Nestle R&D, Head of Science & Technology, Switzerland, UK, Germany (1991-2015)
  • Nestle Fellow for Food Chemistry & Flavor Science, Switzerland (2015-2018)
  • Zurich University of Applied Science, Coffee Excellence Center, Switzerland (since 2019)
  • Yiming Food Co, LTD, Head of R&D, CSO, Vice President, China (since 2019)
  • Professor, Flavour Chemistry, Beijing Technology & Business University, China (2020)
  • Professor, Food Chemistry, EWHA Womans University, Seoul, South Korea (since 2021)
Recent Publications
  • Bel Rhlid, R.; Berger, R.G.; Blank, I. Bio-mediated generation of food flavors – Towards sustainable flavor production inspired by nature. Trends Food Sci. Techn. 2018, 78, 134
  • Poisson, L.; Schaerer, A.; Spreng, S.; Mestdagh, F.; Blank, I.; Davidek, T. Generation of α‐diketones and 4‐hydroxy-2,5-dimethyl-3(2H)‐furanone upon coffee roasting - Impact of roast degree on reaction pathways. J. Agric. Food Chem. 2019, 67, 13829-13839
  • Li, W.; Chen, Y.P.; Blank, I.; Li, F.; Li, C.; Liu, Y. GC × GC-ToF-MS and GC-IMS based volatile profile characterization of the Chinese dry-cured hams from different regions. Food Res. Internat. 2021, 142, 110222-110230
Research Field
Food science and technology, flavor science, analytics, Maillard reactions, lipid oxidation, formation and mitigation of food-borne process contaminants, applied to food categories such as culinary, beverages, coffee & beverages, confectionery, cereals, dairy, and petfood. Result: More than 200 publications, 26 patents, cited more than 7000 times with an h-index of 41 (ResearchGate) and 46 (Google Scholar), participation in more than 100 international conferences.

Karen Nikolai Kuhnert
Characterisation of coffee polyphenols in roasted coffee

Prof. Nikolai Kuhnert


Nikolai Kuhnert studied chemistry and obtained his PhD at the University of Würzburg in Germany. Following postdoctoral years at the university of Cambridge and Oxford (UK) he took his first independent position at the University of Surrey. In 2006 he moved to Jacobs University Bremen, where he is now a full Professor of Analytical Chemistry. He is an honorary Professor in Kandy Sri Lanka and organised the 2019 Cocotea conference. He has around 200 publication and an h-index of 45.


Session Consumption & Health

HP Landolt
Will it keep me awake? Common coffee / caffeine intake habits and sleep in real life situations

Prof. Dr. sc. ETH Hans-Peter Landolt


Hans-Peter Landolt earned a PhD in natural sciences from ETH Zurich (Switzerland) and completed fellowships in human psychopharmacology at the University of Zurich and the University of California in San Diego (USA). Since 2001, he leads an independent research group in preclinical human psychopharmacology and teaches as pharmacology and toxicology at the University of Zurich. Prof. Landolt is widely recognized as an expert on caffeine and sleep. Furthermore, he is internationally known for his work on genotype-dependent differences in sleep and the sleep electroencephalogram, waking performance and brain functions, and responses to sleep- and wake-promoting pharmacological agents. He published more than 90 peer-reviewed original reports and review papers, some of which in prestigious journals such as PNAS, Science and eLife, and currently serves on the Editorial Boards of highly influential journals and textbooks in the field (e.g., SLEEP, Principles and Practice of Sleep Medicine). He initiated and currently leads the University Center of Competence, Sleep & Health Zurich, that fosters interdisciplinary collaboration among basic and clinical scientists in sleep research, sleep medicine and chronobiology.
Finally, he is a regular guest speaker across Europe and North America and actively contributes to numerous local, national and international committees and work forces, including the Executive Boards of the European Sleep Research Society (since 2016) and the Swiss Society of Sleep Research, Sleep Medicine and Chronobiology (since 2017).

Rodrigo Cunha
A cup of coffee for healthier aging

Prof. Rodrigo Cunha


Rodrigo Cunha is a Full Professor at the Faculty of Medicine and Director of the Multidisciplinary Institute of Ageing (MIA-Portugal). He is part of the Steering Committee of the European Neuroscience Campus, the National representative of the Network of European Neuroscience Institutes and a scientific consultant of the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee (ISIC). He heads the group ‘Purines at CNC’, focusing on caffeine neuroprotection and purinergic modulation; his group is constituted by 6 resident PhD researchers, 5 post-docs and 8 PhD students. He has published over 270 papers with an h factor of 67. He has trained over 40 PhD students and 20 post-doctoral fellows and attracted funds from American and European agencies and private companies.