With countries in Asia such as Thailand, India and China among the fastest growing pet care markets globally, and Japan ranking as the fourth-largest pet care market worldwide, the region will continue to have an increasing impact on the petfood and pet care industries. Petfood Forum Asia 2014 comes at a critical time for petfood manufacturers looking to extend their influence and improve their operations and businesses.

Petfood Forum Asia 2014, scheduled for April 9 at the Bangkok International Trade & Exhibition Centre in conjunction with FIAAP/Victam/GRAPAS 2014, features industry experts presenting the latest research and information on the petfood market, pet nutrition, petfood palatability, processing, new product development and more. Plus, participants enjoy valuable networking opportunities with peers from throughout Southeast Asia and the world. Visiting the FIAAP/Victam/GRAPAS exhibits enables Petfood Forum Asia attendees to talk with leading industry suppliers.

The latest schedule and line-up of topics and speakers for Petfood Forum Asia follows. For updates and full descriptions, please bookmark http://petfoodforum.petfoodindustry.com/PetfoodForumAsia.

8:30-10:00  Registration/check in/light breakfast 

10:00-10:45 Relevance of petfood recommendations to consumers in different retail channels -Pushan Tagore, director of pet nutrition services for GfK Animal Health, showcases various influencers and the relevance of their recommendations and advice within different retail environments to petfood consumers. Whom do consumers trust most when making decisions to purchase petfoods?

Tagore studied international management at Oxford Brookes University in the UK and has more than 10 years' experience in consumer research. His career started with the Nielsen Co. and includes five years in a regional market research role with Hill's Pet Nutrition. In his current role with GfK, he is responsible globally for all petfood syndicated retail tracking and consumer research.

10:50-11:30 Impact of dietary past on cat feeding preferences -Isabelle Guiller, global research and innovation director for SPF, shares recent research and data on how cats' feeding preferences change over time and are influenced by a lifetime of feeding experiences.

In her role with the Pet Food Division of Diana Group, Guiller supervises palatability science research and manages partnerships with external research centers worldwide. She holds a master's degree in food science and technology. Previously, Guiller worked at INRA institute (Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, France) before joining the SPF team in 1989.

11:35-12:15 Structured product development for petfood -Marcel Blok, owner and founder of Change Stranamics, explains structured product development, a practical way to not only develop your products but also link them to your company's strategy and the market in which it operates.

Blok has more than 30 years of experience in the pet industry in senior marketing positions, including as the founder and first president of Iams International and as consultant to top US and European industry leaders. He founded Change Stranamics in 1995 and currently serves as chair of the supervisory board of Aller Petfood Group in Europe. Blok has a degree from the Rotterdam Business School.

12:15-13:45 Lunch

13:45-14:25 Advancements in extruded petfoods -Will Henry, director of technology and research and development for Extru-Tech Inc., discusses recent innovations within process management and equipment design for typical extruded petfood production, focusing on preconditioning, extrusion, drying and batch coating.

In his role at Extru-Tech, Henry addresses petfood manufacturers and audiences around the globe about extrusion, processing and food safety systems. He joined Extru-Tech in 2006 after serving as senior project engineer with Bachelor Controls. Henry holds a bachelor of science in electrical engineering from Kansas State University and is certified in HACCP, BSL-2 and as an SQF practitioner.

14:30-15:10 Nutritional considerations for petfood processing -Wouter Hendriks, PhD, professor of animal nutrition at Wageningen University, shares new research on how processing affects nutritional benefits and characteristics of both wet and dry petfoods.

Hendriks completed his doctorate in monogastric nutritional physiology at Massey University in New Zealand. In 2000, he became head of the Department of Animal Nutrition & Physiology at the Institute of Food, Nutrition and Human Health of the university. In 2005, Hendriks moved to Wageningen University in the Netherlands, where he chairs the Department of Animal Nutrition.

15:10-15:45 Coffee break

15:45-16:25 Meat or grain for dogs-or both? -Anton Beynen, PhD, head of research and development for Vobra Special Petfoods and scientific manager for AB Diets, examines, from the standpoint of scientific data, how carnivorous dogs are, presenting relevant data and studies on whether dogs should be fed as carnivores or omnivores.

Beynen is also a part-time professor of animal nutrition at Rajamangala University of Technology-Isan, Sakon Nakhon, Thailand, and at King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He previously served on the faculties of Wageningen University in the Netherlands, University of Indonesia, Jakarta, and Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Beynen earned a master of science in human nutrition and wrote his doctoral thesis on the regulation of fat metabolism.

16:30-17:10 Latest developments in petfood stack odor regulations, emission evaluation and control -Hans Schieven, founder and owner of Uniqair, will share insights on how petfood manufacturers can prepare to comply with upcoming odor regulations, plus how to solve odor emission challenges.

Schieven invented cold plasma injection technology and started Aerox in 1994. Cold plasma systems have since been classified as BACT (Best Available Control Technology) by authorities, first in Europe. In 2004, Schieven sold his shares of Aerox to the Verder Group and started Uniqair Technologies Ltd. in Vancouver, Canada, to develop a new generation of high frequency plasma injection systems.

Register for Petfood Forum Asia 2014 online

Petfood Forum Asia takes place April 9 in Bangkok. Register online at http://petfoodforum.petfoodindustry.com/PetfoodForumAsia/Registration.html. Registration for FIAAP/Victam is separate; please visit www.victam.com.