Portland, Oregon-based nonprofit World Coffee Research has appointed Tania Humphrey to its chief scientific leadership position. As director of research and development, Humphrey succeeds George Kotch following a planned retirement.
Prior to joining WCR, Humphrey spent nearly 14 years at the independent, not-for-profit Canadian horticultural research organization Vineland, most recently serving as vice president of R&D.
In that role, Humphrey oversaw a staff of about 60 people through numerous R&D projects involving a variety of horticultural crops, including fruits, vegetables and flowers.
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According to WCR, Humphrey will be supporting the 2022 launch of the organization’s Global Breeding Network, an ambitious international project designed to hasten the pace of coffee genetic improvement globally amidst climate change.
“To unleash the potential of coffee varieties to address 21st-century challenges and provide opportunities for farmers, coffee needs to incorporate learning from other crops,” WCR CEO Jennifer “Vern” Long said in an announcement of Humphrey’s appointment. “Tania brings tremendous experience from a range of vegetable and fruit crops, including tree crops like peaches and apples. She is passionate about innovation in agriculture and combines a business approach with a strong foundation of science to achieve real-world impact. We can’t wait for her to bring her skills and experience to coffee.”
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