Industry Advisors

UBC Faculty of Land and Food Systems is fortunate to receive counsel from industry advisors on some of our major initiatives. These experts provide a sound external viewpoint to support our infrastructure and program decisions. To read more about our industry partnerships, click here.

Food and Beverage Innovation Centre

Yves Potvin, President, Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts

Photo courtesy of Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts.

Dedicating his career to creating a wide range of healthy, tasty, convenient foods that can now be found across North America, Yves Potvin bought Vancouver’s Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts in 2017––with the aim of training a new generation of chefs committed to nutrition, sustainability and technological advances.

Trained as a classical French chef, Yves has built two highly successful health-focused companies. Yves Veggie Cuisine grew to become North America’s largest refrigerated meat-alternative producer. Garden Protein International created a meatless product line called Gardein, which redefined the plant protein category in this fast-growing segment, receiving multiple awards.

Yves has also received many personal accolades, including the BC Food Processors Innovation Award, Mercy for Animals Innovative Business Award, BC Export Award for Sustainability and Canada’s Top 40 under 40 Award from Financial Post magazine. Yves served on the LFS Advisory Board from 2007 to 2018, and on the BC Ministry of Agriculture Board of Advisors.

Henning Freybe, Retired Chairman, Freybe Gourmet Foods Ltd.

Henning Freybe is the retired Chairman of Freybe Gourmet Foods, Ltd., a sixth-generation, family-owned Canadian business. Freybe served as CEO and President prior to his son, Sven, taking on the role in November 2009

Henning graduated in 1965 from UBC with a Bachelor of Arts degree, followed by an MBA in 1968. He spent two years in the banking industry at Royal Trust in Montreal, and joined the family business as Head of Sales in 1970. In 1990, he was named CEO.

In 2001, Freybe Gourmet Foods opened a new 10,000 square meter (120,000 square feet) state-of-the-art facility in Langley, B.C., producing more than 120 varieties of sausage, ham and specialty meat products. The company employs more than 300 associates, serving customers across North America. Freybe was the first North American company to declare its products gluten and lactose-free. In March 2013, the company was sold to Premium Brands.

Wine Research Centre

Howard Soon, C.M., British Columbia Winemaker

Vancouver-born Howard graduated from UBC in Biochemistry and later pursued an MBA at the University of Manitoba. He is currently Master Winemaker for Vanessa Vineyard, a 75-acre Similkameen Valley property. He has also been named a member of the Order of Canada (C.M.) for his influence on the wine industry.

From 1980 to 2017, Howard––well-known for his collaborative relationships with growers––was Winemaker at Sandhill Wines, receiving an Award of Distinction from the BC Wine Institute. He was the only winemaker in history to receive all three top honours at 2009’s Wine Access Canadian Wine Awards when Sandhill won for Red Wine of the Year, White Wine of the Year and Winery of the Year.

Howard is renowned as the first winemaker to release exclusively single vineyard wines that captured terroir. His contribution to the B.C. wine industry was first recognized in 1998 by the Okanagan Wine Festival Society with a Founders Award. In addition, he was the first B.C. winemaker to receive a Gold Medal at the Chardonnay du Monde competition in Burgundy, France.

Teaching Wine Appreciation at Okanagan College, Howard is also currently on the Board of Directors for the Canadian Grapevine Certification Network (CGCN), the national organization that directs funds towards grape and wine research, especially towards virus-free nursery stock. He is also on the Scientific Advisory Board for Wine and Grape Genomics, a research project involving Genome BC and Genome Canada.