I really enjoy working in the modern work environment of IFS. The purpose driven team as well as the direct involvement of safety and quality stakeholders from the entire supply chain is amazing.
Felix Schuhmann, IFS Academy Technical Manager
IFS is happy to have Felix Schuhman as an employee. He started with an internship in June 2020 and became one of the faces behind the IFS Academy – currently with the opportunity to work remotely from Chile. In this blog post, Felix introduces himself.
One of the IFS Faces behind the IFS Academy
My name is Felix, and I am from Leipzig, Germany. I started my professional path with a horticultural science degree at Humboldt University in Berlin, ten years ago. My particular interest was fruit and vegetable production. I was lucky enough to be involved in a practical research project on the shelf-life elongation of sweet cherries while maintaining critical quality parameters. After completing my thesis, it was time for me to gain more hands-on experience and to see the world. So, I was very fortunate to be accepted by The Ohio Program – a Food and agriculture intern program in the USA.
From horticultural production to food quality management
While going through a full cherry season, I learned what it takes to work in the competitive horticultural sector of Washington. After the season, I switched to the Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission, an industry funded private research institute. There, I was involved in extension work, such as the prediction of postharvest diseases, developing a pre-harvest maturation indicator for a new apple variety and the identification of harmful pathogens in field and warehouse environments. These experiences made it clear to me that I wanted to learn more in the field of food safety and quality. Therefore, I applied for a M.Sc. program at the renowned Wageningen University in the Netherlands.
I was beyond happy when I was accepted for the food quality management program, which allowed me to gain deep insights in food safety and quality standards, legislation and methods. While studying, I worked practically on another research project with LambWeston / Meijer on potentially migrating substances from different sources. While finishing my thesis, Covid-19 stirred up all plans for my internship. A presentation by Britta Müller-Wahl, at the time, sparked my interest in IFS. After a successful application I started my internship in Berlin in June 2020.
Unique chance to gain new perspectives, while living in Chile
After getting to know, the incredible passionate team behind the IFS Standards and Programs, it was quickly clear to me that I wanted to continue my professional path here. Therefore, I felt very accomplished, when I was offered a job in the IFS Academy at the end of my internship. I was excited to join the transitioning academy team and helped with the new signature IFS E-learnings as well as redesigning existing materials.
With a better understanding of the pandemic and loosened travel restrictions, I was hoping to extend my insights in different markets again. So, I was happy when I was granted the opportunity to work remotely for IFS from Chile for five months in the beginning of 2022. It was great to gain deep insights on the specifics of the Chilean and Latin American market. Also, it was wonderful to meet my colleague Daniela Poblete in person, after months of virtual meetings. Not to mention that I had the opportunity to pick-up some basic Spanish and see some parts of the magnificent country.
I am thankful for all the opportunities IFS offers and encourage you, if you are not already, to become part of the IFS Network.