Biopolymer Network

About Us


Our New Zealand based company was formed in 2005 born of a desire by its shareholders to exploit specific niche areas of bio-research to create new bio-based chemicals, biopolymers and applications. In keeping with today’s style of doing business we are a small but agile company able to draw upon the skills of a large pool of talented research scientists sub-contracted from our shareholders Scion, AgResearch and Plant & Food Research Ltd.

Governance


  • David Hughes
    Chairman
    BPN Chairman
    David Hughes, CEO, The New Zealand Institute of Plant & Food Ltd

    David is the CEO of Plant & Food Research, a CRI with a focus on horticulture, arable crops, seafood and wine.


    Background

    Previously David was Group GM Commercial for Plant & Food Research, responsible for the company's marketing, business development and IP functions.  David has worked extensively in the Dairy Industry. David joined the New Zealand Dairy Board in 1987 and worked for 5 years in a range of technical functions at the head office in Wellington. In 1992 he transferred to the Middle East where he spent 5 years in sales, marketing and product development. His next move was to Tokyo, Japan where, for 2 years he was the General Manager Technical for the NZDB's Japanese operating company. In 1999 he returned to Head Office in NZ to take up the role of Global Category Manager before moving to the US to the role of Senior Vice President Business Development for the US operating company. In 2003 David returned to NZ to a leadership position in Fonterra's newly formed Marketing and Innovation group (Fonterra was formed through a merger of the majority of the dairy industry in NZ and is now one of the world's largest dairy companies). In 2005 David swapped from the ingredients to the branded consumer side of Fonterra's business taking the role of GM Brands Innovation with responsibility for consumer goods R&D.

    He was appointed CEO of Plant and Food in February 2018.


    Qualifications

    BTech (Hons), Manufacturing, Massey University, New Zealand
    PGDip, Applied Statistics, Massey University, New Zealand


    Professional Memberships

    Member, New Zealand Institute of Directors
    President, Australasian Industrial Research Group



     

  • Kieran Elborough
    Kieran Elborough, Group General Manager - Technology Development, The New Zealand Institute for Plant & Food Research Ltd

    As Group General Manager of technology development at the New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Ltd, Kieran is involved in aligning the majority of New Zealand's horticultural/arable breeding.   Kieran’s governance experience includes a Ministerial appointment on the Authority of the Environmental Risk Management Agency NZ and more recently several plant based companies both in NZ and overseas.


    Background

    Kieran has had a diverse science career to date, with a background that includes a lectureship at the University of Durham in the UK, and commercial research with a subsidiary of Fonterra.  In that time he has worked in cancer research, microbiology and plant molecular/breeding biology, working for a time in metabolic engineering of plants for bioplastics production.


    Qualifications

    BSc, Microbiology/Microbial genetics, University of Dundee, United Kingdom
    DPhil, Imperial Cancer Research Fund, Imperial College, University of London, United Kingdom


    Professional Memberships

    Director and decision maker for the New Zealand government's environmental protection agency (ERMA NZ)



  • Jolon Dyer
    Jolon Dyer, Science Group Leader, Food & Bio-based Products, Agresearch Ltd

    Jolon's research specialises in protein chemistry, proteomics and structural biology, and their application to wool, meat, dairy and personal care products. He is particularly active in the application of redox proteomics approaches to understanding and controlling protein damage within these substrates, and also in evaluating molecular level interactions between proteins and other biomolecules, especially in foods and textiles.

    Jolon has achieved significant national and international recognition, including the AWI Award for Scientific Achievement and AWI-DWI Excellence in Wool Science Personal Award (2005), NZIAHS Significant Science Achievement Award (2008) and American Society of Photobiology New Investigator Award (2010). Dr Dyer also has adjunct positions within the Biomolecular Interaction Centre at the University of Canterbury (Senior Fellow), the Wine and Food Molecular Biosciences Department at Lincoln University (Associate Professor), and the Riddet Institute based at Massey University (Associate Investigator).



  • Stuart Hall
    Stuart Hall

    Stuart is currently the Partnerships and Programmes Director for AgResearch, responsible for broad commercial activity, a role he commenced in late 2017.


    Background

    Prior to joining AgResearch, Stuart commenced his career with DB Breweries Ltd, spending 15 years in a variety of New Zealand based commercial roles, the last being National Sales Manager.

    In 2009 Stuart joined ANZCO Foods, a significant New Zealand Agri-Business with a global export focus. He spent 8 years in Sales & Marketing roles, the final 4 as General Manager of Sales & Marketing with responsibility for global commercial activity including responsibility for several international offices.

    Stuart graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce and Post Graduate Diploma from Otago University in 1993 and is a member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors.


Our Management Team


  • Sarah Heine, CEO
    Sarah Heine

    Sarah has served as CEO of the company since late 2008 and prior to this was the Manager of ATLAS Technology which provides integrated forestry management and processing software to the forestry industry. The board unanimously selected Sarah based on her demonstrated strong managerial and leadership skills. She leads a dedicated and talented team of scientists working alongside development and commercialisation specialists to deliver pioneering research in bio-based technologies.


  • Anne Harris

    Anne Harris
    Anne is the company secretary responsible for governance and compliance, however her skill set means she also works across a broad range of other areas within the company including marketing, external communication, reporting and contracts.


    Sally Williams

    Sally is BPN’s extremely capable Office Manager a role which encompasses a multitude of tasks both operational and administrative across a team of scientists spread from Auckland to Christchurch along with extensive customer engagement here in New Zealand and internationally.

     
    Sally Williams

    Sally is BPN’s extremely capable Office Manager a role which encompasses a multitude of tasks both operational and administrative across a team of scientists spread from Auckland to Christchurch along with extensive customer engagement here in New Zealand and internationally.

     

  • Barbara Forbes
    Barbara Forbes

    Barbara is a lawyer with many years’ experience in research, development and intellectual property in the science sector. She obtained her BSc at the University of Alberta followed by a law degree. Barbara is all about practical legal solutions to add value to the business. Barbara provides advice across a wide field of commercial matters with information technology, intellectual property and corporate governance being strong areas of expertise.


  • Sally Williams

     

    Sally Williams

    Sally is BPN’s extremely capable Office Manager a role which encompasses a multitude of tasks both operational and administrative across a team of scientists spread from Auckland to Christchurch along with extensive customer engagement here in New Zealand and internationally.