With diversity in background and experience, we have one goal in common — doing good, effectively.
Mirte leads GFI Asia Pacific as Acting MD, accelerating the markets for plant-based and cultivated meat through research and innovation. Prior to GFI, she worked as a management consultant to startups, and as a researcher in humanitarian logistics. She brings experience in startups, international development, and philanthropy. Mirte holds a Master’s in International Development Studies from Wageningen University & Research and is a graduate of the INSEAD Social Entrepreneurship Programme.
Mirte lives in Singapore.
Senior Operations Manager
Victoria leads the finance control, legal compliance and human resources for GFI APAC. Victoria brings in over 11 years of experience in nonprofit and management roles to her work. For the past decade, Victoria has worked for a multinational nonprofit organization and been dedicated to advancing corporate responsibility and sustainability in helping children and their families.
Victoria lives in Hong Kong.
Senior Communications Manager
Ryan Huling leads GFI’s communications and programs for the Asia-Pacific region. Prior to joining GFI, he was working as an international consultant for the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), based in Hanoi, Vietnam, where he focused on sustainable food systems and dietary change. Huling also previously served as an international director in the animal protection field and his work has been featured by major news outlets around the globe, including The Nikkei, South China Morning Post, The Bangkok Post, CNN, Fox News, NBC News, USA Today, Business Insider, and WIRED.
Ryan lives in Los Angeles.
Dean Powell, Ph.D.
Dean provides scientific and technical expertise for GFI APAC. He holds a Ph.D. in molecular and cellular biology with a focus on poultry muscle development and a bachelor’s in Animal and Veterinary Bioscience, both from the University of Sydney. Dean has experience working for the Australian Federal Government both as a scientific assessor for food safety regulations and as an international policy analyst focusing on the Asia-Pacific region.
Dean lives in Sydney.
Wasamon Nutakul, Ph.D.
Wasamon is our SciTech Specialist focusing on plant-based protein at GFI APAC. She has more than five years of experiences in the multinational food companies in which she gathered her interest and expertise in food proteins and their applications in variety of products. Before joining GFI, she spends two years working in academic/industry interphase to develop new talents for the food industry in Thailand. Wasamon holds a Ph.D. in Food Science from University of Massachusetts Amherst and a BSc. in Biochemistry from Chulalongkorn University, Thailand.
Wasamon currently lives in Bangkok.
Chair, Advisory Council
Nydia Zhang is an angel investor and alternative protein/food tech enthusiast. She serves as an advisor at FTW Ventures and co-founded the Altprotein HK meetup. She is also co-founder of Social Alpha Foundation (SAF), a Fundraising Committee Member of the Hong Kong Society for the Protection of Children (HKSPC), regional ambassador of the Global Blockchain Business Council (GBBC), former co-chair of the Financial Literacy & Inclusion Committee at The Fintech Association of Hong Kong (FTAHK), and also sits on the Global Patrons Board of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
Vikas Garg is the founder and CEO of abillion, a global community on a mission to help a billion people create world-changing social impact. Vikas is a dedicated supporter of grassroots education and conservation initiatives around the world. He’s received Credit Suisse’s Global Citizenship Award, is a Young Leader of the Milken Institute, and a Charter Member of The IndUS Entrepreneurs.
Rachel Pickel lives and works in Bangkok, Thailand and is a legal and policy expert at UNICEF’s Regional Office for East Asia and the Pacific. She has over 10 years’ experience working on international legal issues related to food law, regulatory policy and consumer protection and is passionate about how innovation can transform the food system. Rachel has worked for a variety of international organizations including the United Nations, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and the Clinton Health Access Initiative.
Elaine Siu founded and managed GFI’s operation in the Asia-Pacific region before passing on the torch. She first tapped into the alternative protein sector through Green Monday, building what is now Green Monday Ventures. Prior to that, Elaine had over a decade of experience in corporate and finance law, from IPO and M&A to structured products and investment funds.
Elaine J. Cheung
Elaine J. Cheung is a purpose-driven CFO and Board Director, helping companies fulfill their commitments to environmental and social sustainability through profitable strategies. Her experiences in healthcare, consumer goods, supply chains, and aquaculture—along with board roles at the UN World Food Programme and WWF—give her deep insights into moving beyond shareholder to stakeholder capitalism. Elaine strongly believes in harnessing individual actions as a catalyst for global change.
Elaine is an Operating Partner at Temasek’s Enterprise Development Group with a mandate to build and operate an Asia Sustainable Food Platform to accelerate the adoption of sustainable food in Asia.