Jason Whooley has been CEO of Bio-marine Ingredients Ireland (BII) since Sept. 2014. Prior to taking up the role in BII, Jason was CEO of the state seafood agency, Bord Iascaigh Mhára since 2007. He has an extensive knowledge of the fishing industry having spent over a decade as CEO of the fishing group, ISWFO. Jason is a graduate of UCC, where he was awarded a Bachelor of Commerce Degree.
Dr. Snehal Gite is working as Senior R&D Technologist at BII since Feb 2018. He has completed his B.Sc. M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Biochemistry from University of Pune, India. He is having 13 years’ of experience in bio-based Industry and Academia. Dr. Gite is having 11- international peer reviewed publications, one book chapter and one patent to his credit. In his previous job, he was working on functional food development for optimum brain health using marine health ingredients, at Teagasc Moorepark Food Research Centre, Ireland. Dr. Gite’s Ph.D. thesis was on “study towards development of polyphenols enriched food supplements using indigenous plant materials and assessing their multifunctionality”. His previous research was mainly focussed on In vitro screening and ranking of food materials, ingredients and nutraceuticals as per their heath promoting activities, pre-clinical trials and functional / medical food development.
Clemence Prosen is working as a Senior NDP technologist at Bio marine Ingredients Ireland Ltd. Since January 2018. Prior to BII, Clémence had 10 years of experience in the Dairy industry, working as a project manager in product development for Ingredia, Danone Nutricia, Sodiaal and Glanbia. She developed milk proteins, hydrolysates and milk powders for various food applications for the European and Asian market. She has also manged the development of clinically-proven Infant and Medical formulas. Clemence holds a Master of Engineering in Food and Nutrition from AgroSup Dijon, National Superior Institute of agricultural sciences, food and environment.
Brian McGovern is operations manager at BII since, January 2016. Brian has previously worked as filling & packaging operations plant manager with Henkel Ireland from 2007 until Dec 2015. With Henkel Brian managed a large team of people and focussed on optimising efficiencies across multiple filling and packing lines. Previously Brian was the production manager for C&D Foods (Privately owner Irish pet food manufacturer) from 1998 to 2007 where he had responsible for commissioning of a new plant. Brian also worked with The Queally Group & Kepak Group in the food industry following his completion of a Diploma in Food Science from UCC. Brian is very excited about Bio-marine’s future and is very much enjoying being involved in this start-up venture.
Vaibhavraj Shahapure is working as a Quality Assurance Supervisor at BII since July 2017. Raj holds a Master of Engineering Science degree majoring in Food Engineering from University College Dublin and a B.Tech degree in Agricultural Engineering. Raj has 2 years of experience working in quality department in Dairy, beverage and ready meal company. He is driving the food safety and quality system in BII and actively involved in establishing various standards like ISO 22000, FEMAS, SFPA, ORIGIN GREEN, HALAL etc for BII. Raj is a certified internal auditor and leading the HACCP team at BII.
Dr Neil Ruane is Section Manager of the Marine Institute FEAS - Aquaculture Section. He has published extensively in the fields of fish welfare and diseases of farmed fish. He has been involved in many international initiatives including Chairing the Pancreas Disease TriNation Group and the Gill Health Initiative with colleagues from all the major Atlantic salmon farming countries. He is also a member and former Chair of the ICES Working Group on Pathology & Diseases of Marine Organisms. He is actively involved in a number of National and EU funded projects and has previously project managed a number of projects under the Sea Change initiative (funded by the MI and the NDP Marine Programme). He has over 10 years experience as a Team Lead for finfish health at the MI and has 50 publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
Dr Jamie Downes has worked in the aquaculture and aquarium industry for over 10 years concentrating on the husbandry and welfare of a variety of both marine and freshwater species. He is also working on the SALMSON smolt project (EMFF) which is looking at incorporating the use of Re-circulation Aquaculture Systems for the production of larger smolt. Previously, he has been involved in the INvertebrateIT project (EASME) that aims to help aquaculture operators mitigate their current dependence on costly, volatile, and often unsustainable fish feeds, to diversify their business and to contribute to a better management of valuable organic waste and/or new algal substrates for invertebrate production.
Dr Liz Ryder is a Scientific and Technical Officer with the Marine Institute on the HYDROfish project, based in Newport Co. Mayo. Elizabeth has supported the Marine Institute long term automatic water quality monitoring programme. Her main areas of research are carbon cycling, high resolution monitoring of catchment and in-lake processes as well as expertise in fish ecology, genetics, evolution, environmental effects on host microbiomes and the monitoring of the impacts on phenotypic traits such as metabolism and immune response of Atlantic Salmon in freshwater catchments and the marine environment.
Prof. Mark Johnson is the deputy director of the Ryan Institute and coordinator for the BSc in Marine Science at NUI Galway. Prof. Johnson’s research interests are in population and community ecology of marine species, with particular focus on spatial processes. These research themes have been applied to invasive species biology, assessment of harvest impacts, ecosystem modelling, spatial planning, assessments of climate change and regional ecosystem dynamics.
Dr Alex Wan is the project manager for HYDROfish research programme and team leader in ANARU. Graduated in 2017 with a PhD in Marine Sciences at NUI Galway, Alex has a key interest in analytical food chemistry, biochemistry, haematology, fish nutrition, marine biology, marine innovation and sustainable aquaculture. He is the team leader for the Aquaculture Nutrition and Aquafeed Research Unit (ANARU) based in the Ryan institute’s Carna Research Station, Connemara and Martin Ryan Annex building on NUIG’s main campus. The group specialises in engaging with commercial entities through joint collaborations in aquafeed, aquaculture and market research. He has worked with both national and international SMEs and LEs on industrial research collaborations in developing sustainable new feed ingredients and validating feed products.
Mr Proinsias Hernon completed a B.Sc. in Applied Freshwater and Marine Biology in GMIT, Co. Galway in 2018. He is currently undertaking a research masters as part of the HYDROfish Programme investigating the effects of various fish protein hydrolysates on the growth and nutrition of Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar) while investigating the functional properties of the hydrolysates. Prior to conducting this research, Proinsias has been involved in the Cleanerfish programme, where he was directly involved in the semi-commercial production of lumpfish (Cyclopterus lumpus) for use as a biological control of sea lice in commercial salmon farming.
Dr Maria Tuohy is Principal Investigator and head of the Molecular Glycobiotechnology Group (MGBG). Dr. Tuohy has a strong track record in Glycobiotechnology and Enzyme Biotechnology, with ~25 years’ experience in fungal biology and biotechnology. A special focus of the research is on developing enabling technology for bioconversion of terrestrial plants and algae for biorefinery and bioenergy applications. This research encompasses protein biotechnology, molecular enzymology, proteomics, fungal genetics, biology and genomics, fermentation, analytical methods in glycobiology and protein biochemistry, development of novel energy systems, as well as key analytical methods to measure and characterize novel bioactive compounds from microbial, plant and marine sources. Understanding fungal biodiversity and the relationships between fungi and other organisms (terrestrial plants and marine life) forms a central theme that underpins the research on developing fungi as cell factories for production of enzymes and bioactives of biotechnological relevance. Research to date has involved ongoing collaboration with industry. Dr. Tuohy is one of 5 PIs in the EI-IDA supported, industry-led, national Technology Centre for Biorefining and Bioenergy (TCBB) and more recently, TCBB Resource. Through TCBB is involved in the European Bio-based Industries Consortium (BIC) and was a PI on the Technological Innovation workpackage of an EU FP7 INTERREG IVB NWE Programme (‘ReNEW’), which was coordinated by The Queens University Belfast and involved a consortium of RTD, Industry and regional development organisations across NW Europe. Dr. Tuohy is also a co-PI on Pillar 5 of the recent national Dairy Processing Technology Centre (DPTC; 25m funding), since February 2015, and a collaborating PI in the recent SFI-Industry supported ‘Sustainable Energy & Fuel Efficiency Spoke’ in MaREI Research Centre. Dr. Tuohy & her group are members of the Energy Research Centre and Environmental Technologies PRA group, Ryan Institute, NUI Galway, Ireland.
Dr Cecília de Souza Valente is a Postdoctoral researcher within the Ryan Institute at the National University of Ireland Galway, as part of the HYDROfish Programme. She manages a research project and investigates novel aquafeed ingredients and their inclusion level efficacy on the growth, nutrition, and health of Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar). Cecília is a Veterinarian, who obtained her Doctoral degree on Aquaculture in 2019, with a thesis on the influence of aquaculture systems and infectious diseases on shrimp health and welfare. Cecília’s main research interest include fish and crustacean nutrition, fish and crustacean health and welfare, immunonutrition, nutrigenomics, gut health, and innovative and sustainable aquaculture.
Ms Deepanshi Sharm is a PhD researcher at the National University of Ireland and a team member of the HYDROfish research programme. Deepanshi has a double master's in Biotechnology and Biomedical Sciences each and more than two years of experience in biochemistry research. Her current project focusses on investigating various biotechnological approaches for the production of novel bioactives and feed ingredients for organic aquaculture applications.
Ms Ellie-Ann Conneely recently completed an MSc from the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology in collaboration with the Marine Institute, where she analysed geographic and temporal changes in toxic phytoplankton species affecting shellfisheries along the Irish coast. Prior to this she graduated from NUI Galway with a BSc (Hons.) in Zoology. She has completed two previous scholarships within the Ryan Institute, one with the ANARU research group. Ellie-Ann has returned to the HYDROfish project as an intern where she will again be working on histological sample processing, nutritional analysis, and the maintenance of fish stocks.
Ms Nuala Landers recently graduated from NUI Galway with a B.Sc Honours in Marine Science. Previously, she had worked on the effects of wrasse cleaner fish on health and welfare in salmon sea cages. Nuala is currently working on the HYDROfish research project as an intern in nutritional analysis and histological sample processing.
Prof. Catherine Stanton is Senior Principal Research Officer at Teagasc and Research Professor at UCC, College of Medicine and Health. She is one of the nine original PI’s in the APC Microbiome Institute, Cork. Her research programme addresses food and health, including developing innovative dairy foods and probiotics that influence human health and gut microbiota. She has been involved in numerous national and international grants, including the coordination of FP5 funded EU-BIOCLA, JPI FOOD PROCESSING FOR HEALTH-LONGLIFE (2016-2019) and ERA-GAS funded METHLAB (2017-2020). Professor Stanton received the ELIE METCHKNOFF AWARD 2010 for research on the application of Lactic Acid Bacteria (LAB) in fermented dairy products to improve health. She was awarded D.Sc. from NUI (2009), and Irish Laboratory Scientist of the Year 2017 and 2019.
Prof. Paul Ross was appointed as Director of APC Microbiome Ireland in June 2019 and is also Professor of Microbiology at University College Cork. For the previous 5 years, he was Head of the College of Science, Engineering and Food Science at the University. Prior to that he was Head of the Teagasc (National) Food Research Programme (Moorepark & Ashtown Food Research Centres) which included the role of Managing Director of Moorepark Technology Ltd. – an ultramodern Dairy Pilot Plant facility. APC Microbiome Ireland is an SFI-funded Institute devoted to the study of the human microbiota and it’s relationship to food and human health. Pauls main research interests are in gut microbiota, antimicrobial peptides, bacteriocins, bacteriophage, and anti-infectives. He was conferred in March 2009 with a D.Sc. from the National University of Ireland (N.U.I.) based on published works. He has won many awards including the Distinguished Service Award from The American Dairy Science Association in June 2017. He was elected a member of The Royal Irish Academy (RIA) in May 2010 and a Fellow of the American Academy for Microbiology (AAM) in 2014.
Dr Brian Healy
Dr Shuqin Zeng is a Postdoctoral researcher and works as part of a team based in the Biosciences Department located in Teagasc Food Research Centre. She obtained her Doctoral degree in 2019 with project focusing on the embryo-maternal interactions by using bioinformatics to reveal the establishment and maintenance of pregnancy. Her main areas of research interest include functional genomics, transcriptomics, embryo development, cell type-specific gene expression, nutrition, gut microbiota. As part of the HYDROfish Programme, she will explore the potential of fish protein hydrolysates as a functional additive through measurement of biological properties, such as immunostimulatory, modification of the gut microbiota and antioxidative properties by multi-omics approaches.