Each month, we meet one of IFT’s valued volunteers;
“It’s a fascinating time to work in food” says Sarah Levy, vice president with FoodMinds, a Washington, D.C.- based food and nutrition communications company that harnesses science, public affairs, food values, and communications to meet business and public health objectives.
“I lead our global food and nutrition affairs business, which requires cultivating a deep understanding of global public health recommendations and policy/regulatory actions to help guide our clients through an increasingly complex landscape,” she says. Before joining FoodMinds, Levy, who is a registered dietitian with a master’s degree in public health nutrition, held positions at FleishmanHillard and the Grocery Manufacturers Association.
One of the things she enjoys most about her job is working with a “passionate, super-smart staff” of more than 20 experts to develop cutting-edge strategies. “As consumer food values evolve and obesity and chronic disease continue to afflict our global population, food and beverage companies are changing the way they approach nutrition,” she explains. “I enjoy the challenge of helping companies that think innovatively about how to contribute to public health solutions and meet new consumer demands.”
Levy has participated in IFT events since the beginning of her career. Two years ago, she was presented with an opportunity to run for president-elect of the Washington, D.C., Section. Since then, she has served as the section’s president-elect and president, and currently serves as past president. “Volunteering with the D.C., section has been an excellent opportunity to network with and learn from colleagues,” she says. “As a nutrition professional, the relationships I have built within the food science and technology community have led to insights that enrich my day-to-day work.”
Among the experiences Levy has found particularly meaningful is her participation in the Food Policy Impact Conference that the D.C. section hosts each February. “Each year, the meeting has successfully convened leaders from government, industry, science and public health organizations to discuss the latest developments in food laws, regulations, and policy initiatives,” she explains. “The smaller setting and high-caliber speakers and attendees lead to highly dynamic conversations that help attendees understand and anticipate changes in the food and beverage environment.”
When she’s not studying global food policy, Levy says, “you’ll find me traveling the world at every opportunity. Hiking mountains and glaciers in Patagonia makes the list of top trips!”
For someone who enjoys meeting challenges, Levy finds a rich source of possibilities in the world of food and nutrition. “Food science and technology has a critical role to play in some of the most important challenges facing our planet,” she observes. “From hunger and malnutrition to food waste and environmental sustainability – I look forward to the creative and innovative solutions that are being/will be pursued.”
This article originally appeared in the March issue of IFT’s Food Technology Magazine, read it here.