Dutch innovative hybrid potato breeder Solynta announced today that Peter Poortinga will join the company as Chief Executive Officer as per September 15. He succeeds Hein Kruyt, who co-founded Solynta in 2007 and who will continue to serve as its CFO.
“I have had the pleasure of working closely with Peter in his role as Chair of our Supervisory Board over the last year and a half, and I am certain that Peter’s experience will boost Solynta’s scaling capabilities and help us achieve our vision for a more sustainable future.” said Hein Kruyt, co-founder and current CEO of Solynta.
“Peter has an impressive track record in the agriculture food industry as an entrepreneur, lastly as CEO of Plukon Food Group, which he scaled to a thriving €3 billion multinational enterprise and industry leader. Next to that he also brings subject matter knowledge, since he studied agronomy at Wageningen University with a focus on potato science. Our skills complement each other and I look forward to working even more closely with Peter in Solynta’s next exciting chapter of growth.”
Peter Poortinga is looking forward to the new position. “I am convinced that the technology Solynta has developed is the future of potatoes – for consumers, farmers, processors and the planet. Solynta’s mission to make a positive contribution to farmer economics and world food security is one I fully agree with, and the progress they have made to deliver potato varieties with natural protection against pests and diseases proves their commitment to this vision.
“I am looking forward to working with Hein and the team, and contributing to Solynta’s future as the leading potato-seed innovation company. Together, we will empower the potato value chain with new, robust potato varieties.”
Changes in the Supervisory Board
With the appointment of Peter Poortinga as CEO, the current Supervisory Board member Juergen Steinemann will become Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Solynta. Juergen’s accomplishments are numerous, with former executive positions at Nutreco and Barry Callebaut. He currently serves on the Supervisory Boards of Metro AG, Lonza Group AG, Big Dutchman, and Barentz.
He has outstanding expertise in the agriculture and food industry. New Supervisory Board Chair Juergen Steinemann remarked: “Solynta has entered the next phase of growth. After its breakthrough discovery in potato breeding, it is now on its way to achieving commercial impact, as well as its aim of becoming a world’s leading potato breeding company.
“I’m excited to support Solynta from my new role. Hein and the team have been developing Solynta since 2007. Their vision and perseverance turned an idea into a successful scale-up company that has started recently commercializing its first products.
“The Supervisory Board thanks Hein for his leadership and looks forward to his continued support to the team as CFO, the role he held at various companies prior to his current position. Peter’s election as CEO will help the company to grow further, mainly thanks to the experience and knowledge he brings from his previous role at Plukon Food Group.”
Solynta’s True Potato Seeds technology:
- Replaces 2500 kilo of perishable potato-seed-tubers with 25 grams of pristine true-potato seeds to start a crop
- By natural breeding, these seeds can be improved much faster with beneficial natural traits like disease resistances – limiting the need for pesticide use- and made more robust against climate change impact