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Margaret Bath

Member of the Board, EIT Food, European Institute of Innovation and Technology

Margaret Bath is a CEO with a strong background in R&D and Quality systems in food. She is currently serving on several boards, including one in Belgium, the EIT Food Supervisory Board. Previously, she served as the CEO of EIT Food, based in Leuven, Belgium. EIT Food is a knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC) that has been established to accelerate the transformation of Europe’s Food System. It is a unique operating environment with a strong principle of consumer centricity at the center of the Knowledge triangle (business, education and research/innovation. The funding comes from various sources, including the EU (government) and our partners. For personal reasons, related to family, Margaret needed to step down from her CEO position. In addition, Margaret spent seventeen years with the Kellogg Company, including over twelve years as their Chief Technology Officer. As the Company’s CTO, she globalized the Company’s R&D and Quality network. During her tenure, the global staff increased by almost 50% to over 900 professionals and the operating budget increased by approximately 20%. Under Margaret’s leadership, R&D was consistently recognized by the business as a strategic enabler of delivering strong and sustainable top-line and bottom-line results. This was accomplishing by driving strong growth programs, led by consumer insights and an innovative technology pipeline, enhancing bottom line performance through cost savings, margin enhancements via consumer derived design improvements, and strengthening the company’s most important asset, the brands, via quality programs and new product initiatives that reinforced the brand promise of a given equity. Margaret has successfully led the R&D integration for the Kellogg Company’s two largest acquisitions with minimal disruption of business operations and an overall strengthening of the new product pipeline. She also has extensive experience in developing Quality and Food Safety programs to ensure the delight of consumers and a strong relationship with regulatory bodies. During her last six years at the Kellogg Company, Margaret’s focus was on globalization of the R&D network to enable growth in emerging markets. In this period, six new R&D centers have been open, with four of them being in emerging markets. This globalization has led to broader access of talent, external knowledge and new technologies, thereby strengthening the entire global network, yielding stronger ideas, and speed to market. Prior to joining the Kellogg Company in 2000, she spent several years at PepsiCo in their Frito Lay division where she held positions of progressive responsibility in Research and Development. Currently, as Founder & Managing Partner at Strong Harbor, LLC – a consultancy helping food companies with R&D and Quality challenges, Margaret is focused on bringing unique consumer, technology, and regulatory insights to others in the consumer goods industry. Serving on non-profit boards throughout her career, Margaret currently on the Board of Directors at International Food Protection Training Institute, EIT Food and Monnell Chemical Senses. Margaret holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Food Science from the University of Maryland, and an Honorary Doctorate from the Katholieke University in Leuven, Belgium (Bioscience Engineering).