Dr. José Juan Rodríguez Jerez is a professor in the Departament of Animal and Food Sciences at the UAB. Since 1996, he works on techniques based on immunology (ELFA), ATP analysis, microscopy (light, electron, fluorescence and confocal laser scanning microscopy, and image analysis) and molecular biology (real-time PCR and sequencing). There are five scientists in his research group, which is specialised in development of rapid methods for foodborne disease prevention, by controlling cross-contamination between surfaces and foods, and has more than 350 publications, 112 of which are research papers, 12 of which are book chapters and more than 250 of which are popular science papers. From 2000 to 2008, he was in charge of the scientific coordination of the website www.consumaseguridad.com, and currently, he carries out the same task at http://mapaperills.uab.cat.

Dr. Armand Sánchez Bonastre, head of the Molecular Genetics Veterinary Service (SVGM) of the UAB, is an emeritus professor in the Departament of Animal and Food Sciences at the UAB. Head of the research group “Molecular animal breeding in veterinary sciences”, whose activities focus on the application of molecular techniques to animal production. He has been in charge of many projects funded by Spanish or international public institutions, or private companies. Currently, he takes part in animal genomics projects on genetic characterization of characteristics interesting for animal production, and in the development of analytical methods for molecular diagnosis. He has published about 200 papers in international journals on molecular genetics applied to livestock production.

Mr. Pascal Monzó Martos received his B.S. degree in Veterinary science from the Universidad de Zaragoza. He started his professional practice at dairy industry and, in 1990, joined the poultry industry, at Productos Florida (DACSA Group), in Vila-real, Castellón, where he founded and have led the microbiology laboratory from that year. His activities include all the microbiology-related areas, such as chick incubation room: viability and risk control in hatching, and hygiene and disinfection criteria assessment; chick incubation and birth room: control and safety criteria establishment; feed plant: raw material control and production process evaluation; field: support and control in pathologies (broilers); carcass production (slaughtering, plucking, evisceration, maturing, etc.): criteria establishment and process evaluation; dressing and packaging (processes which were started at the company in 2005): preservation optimization (modified atmosphere, plastic films, etc.), criteria establishment and expiry date assessment; processed poultry: control and criteria establishment. During all these years, he has gone through different stages in microbiology: from the conventional one, then, chromogenic culture media, and currently, automated equipment; and he has met different “trends” regarding pathogenic bacteria: first, Salmonella, then, Listeria monocytogenes, and finally, Campylobacter jejuni, which are of great importance at poultry industry, without forgetting antimicrobial resistances, which may turn out to be harmful. His large experience gives him a complete view of poultry industry risks; he concludes that microorganisms are constantly adapting to human challenges and surprising us, we will never have enough knowledge about the exciting microbial world, they will keep on causing many headaches.

Dr. Oscar J. Esteban Cabornero defines himself as “a tireless knowledge seeker and ‘grower’ of teams”. After doing research in microbiology for several years, he worked on technical equipment development in food industries. With an almost-25-year professional career, he has worked in dairy sector (Grupo Calidad Pascual); fruit juice and soft drink sector (AMC Group); and cheese sector for 14 years up to now, on new product development and currently as a head of quality at Queserías Entrepinares, in Valladolid. In those years, his wide range of tasks includes: quality, environmental coordination, laboratory management, product development, and establishment of corporate strategies for food safety and total quality. Currently, he mainly focuses on responsible leadership and sustainability. He juggles his professional activity and teaching and research, with participation in more than 30 projects and several publications in scientific and sectorial journals. He collaborates with the Universidades de Valladolid, Burgos, Pontificia Comillas, Autònoma de Barcelona and Complutense de Madrid, and is a member of the Sociedad Española de Microbiología. Further information: https://www.linkedin.com/in/oscarjesteban.

Mr. Jon Basagoiti Azpitarte, after doing microbiological control in a beer industry (from 1986 to 1992), works on different aspects of food quality and safety management systems. Regarding quality systems, he audits at several fields of industrial activity and services, with more than 1,500 audits, focused on food industries. He is involved in HACCP system since 1993, when he heard about it as an ISO 9001 quality system consultant and auditor. Since 1996, he teaches many courses on audits and HACCP to food industries and inspectors from different Spanish autonomous regions. From a practical application point of view, he tries to make sure the developed or evaluated HACCP systems recognize the behaviour of food hazards in industrial processes, so that they can be effectively controled. He is one of the promoters and the scientific editor of the The Enemy in your Kitchen project (https://elenemigoentucocina.com).

Mr. David Tomás Fornés is the coordinator of the Spanish Working Group on Standardisation in food microbiology at the Spanish Association for Standardisation (UNE), and an expert in International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and European Committee for Standardization (CEN) technical committees. He is a global scientific affairs associate director at bioMérieux, and collaborates with the Research Institute of Food Engineering for Development (IIAD) at the Universitat Politècnica de València. He worked as a technical auditor in the Spanish Accreditation Body (ENAC), as a microbiological methods specialist at Merck Life Science, as a senior scientist at Nestlé Research Center, in Lausanne (Switzerland), and as a head of the Microbiology and Molecular biology Laboratory at ainia, centro tecnológico.

Dr. José Martínez Peinado got his position as a professor of Microbiology at the Facultad de Biología of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in 1988. Besides his teaching and research activities, he was chairman of the Sociedad Española de Microbiología (SEM) specialist group on Industrial microbiology (1991-1998), deputy chairman of the SEM (1998-2006), and chairman of the Comisión de Normalización de Técnicas y Métodos Microbiológicos from its creation in 1999 to 2006. Member of the editorial boards of the Journal of Food Protection (1998-2000) and International Microbiology (from 1991 up to now). Commissioner at the International Comission for Yeasts (ICY) (1998-2017), a specialised commission on yeasts of the International Union of Microbiological Societies. He has been an evaluator in the Agencia Nacional de Evaluación y Prospectiva, the university quality agencies of Madrid and Castilla-La Mancha, the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (Portugal), the US-Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development Fund (Israel), and the European Commission (4th, 5th and 6th framework programmes), in the fields of food microbiology and biotechnology. He has supervised ten Ph.D. students, and participated as a lead researcher in ten Spanish projects and two European projects. He collects positive evaluation of his research in six 6-year periods.

Dr. Nathalie Gnanou Besse, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and Ph.D. in Food microbiology, is, since 1997, a research scientist at the Food safety Laboratory of the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety (ANSES), in Maisons-Alfort, France, where she was responsible for the Listeria/Cronobacter team-Ecophysiology and Bacterial detection Unit (until 2013), the National Reference Laboratory for Listeria monocytogenes (2014), and the National Reference Laboratory for Milk-Staphylococcus, Bacillus, Clostridium and Milk Unit (2015-2018). Her research activities focus on food microbiology, quantitative and predictive microbiology, microbiological analytical methods improvement, Listeria monocytogenes, Cronobacter spp., and microbiology of milk and dairy products. She participates in national and international research projects, in particular the co-direction of a doctoral thesis on Cronobacter spp. (2007-2010), and in standardization activities, such as project manager for the Review and Validation of Listeria standards: CEN mandate M381, TAG 17 Listeria spp., ISO TC34 SC9 WG 32 Improvement of pre-enrichment for Listeria detection; member of the Committee V08B and V45C of the French Standardization Association (AFNOR); CEN TAG Cronobacter spp. 14; CEN TAG 09 and CEN/TC 463/WG 5 Pre-enrichment; and ISO WG 22-23 Enumeration and detection of sulfite-reducing bacteria and Clostridium perfringens. She is also a competent personality in the frame of the specialised experts committees of ANSES, and participated in internal working groups for risk evaluation tasks and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) working group on Analysis of the baseline survey on the prevalence of Listeria monocytogenes in certain ready-to-eat foods in the EU (2012-2013). She participates in training of students, and is referee for several international scientific journals.

Dr. Marta Hugas Maurici is an independent expert and former chief scientist at the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). She held a B.S. in Biological sciences, M.S. in Genetics and Microbial biotechnology, and Ph.D. in Food microbiology. In 2020, she was appointed to the scientific group preparing for the UN Food Systems Summit held in 2021, co-coordinating Action Track 2: Shifting to sustainable consumption habits. In 2023, she has been appointed to the scientific committee advising the UN Food Systems Hub to reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s). She joined EFSA in 2003 until 2022, where she held several scientific and managerial responsibilities: head of Biological hazards Unit, head of Biological hazards and contaminants Unit, head of Risk assessment and Scientific assistance Department, and chief scientist (2017-2022). She worked for the Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA), in Spain, from 1983 to 2002, where she was head of Food microbiology and Biotechnology Unit. From 1992 to 2004, she was an associate professor at the Universitat de Barcelona. Her main areas of expertise are food safety, risk assessment and sustainability, as well as the science of providing scientific advice to policy makers.

Mr. José Antonio Salazar Rabasa, B.S. degree in Veterinary science from the Universidad de León, is a technical director in Micral Análisis Alimentarios, a private laboratory in Lugo accredited by the Spanish Accreditation Body (ENAC) and focused on food microbiological analysis and consulting (HACCP, IFS, BRC, labelling, legislation, etc.). He has worked with traditional plate culture methods and, for more than 10 years, with others such as automated MPN, ELFA and PCR. He is a lead instructor of the US Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance (FSPCA), and a member of the Spanish Society for Food Safety and Quality (SESAL) and the Society for Food Scientists and Technologists of Castilla y León (ACTA/CL).

Dr. Montse Vila Brugalla works in the Food Safety Management (DISAL) at the Barcelona Public Health Agency, by doing official inspections in food establishments of Barcelona city. She was a head, for 12 years, of the Quality control Department of a ready-to-eat meal industry. Her interest in thermobacteriology and the way of establishing food shelf-life leads her to the knowledge of microbial growth and inactivation models, and predictive microbiology. In 2002, she defended her research work entitled “Study on the application of Gompertz equation and Baranyi model for establishment of pasteurized sauce shelf-life”, in the Food nutrition, technology and hygiene postgraduate programme. In 2012, she participated in writing the “Guideline on good hygiene practices specific for sous-vide cooking”. Her Ph.D. thesis analysed the inclusion, in primary models, of the experimental variability observed after sous-vide treatments of a food at mild temperatures. From 2013, she has been an assistant professor in the Departament of Animal and Food Sciences at the UAB for several periods of time.