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Sharon Bolel appointed new SAAFFI Executive Director



Following Michael Gristwood’s recent announcement regarding his retirement from the position as SAAFFI’s executive director, Sharon Bolel, has been appointed as the successor to this position.



Michael, who retires officially from end-2023, will stay on until December to ensure a seamless transition.

Sharon is well known to the South African Flavour & Fragrance industry, having served as Assistant Executive Director of SAAFFI for the past 8 years, and before that as an active member of SAAFFI through the membership of her former company, Sharon Bolel Chemical Marketing.

Michael’s tenure as executive director has been a long and very significant one for the organisation. A bankrupt, defunct association was resurrected by Michael almost 25 years ago, and is today recognised and hailed as one of the most relevant and active industry associations in South Africa. Michael’s contribution to fulfilling the mission of SAAFFI is immeasurable.

Sharon commented: “Michael’s shoes are big ones to fill! Michael has done a sterling job of moulding SAAFFI into the admired and relevant organisation it is today, locally and internationally. For me personally, Michael has served as a fantastic mentor and role model.

I know that he will continue to be available to me and to SAAFFI should we need to tap into his wisdom, knowledge and leadership capability as we navigate the future.”

Sharon holds formal qualifications in Chemistry, Mathematics, Microbiology, Business Management and Marketing. She has worked as a food chemist, in medical research, as technical editor, in technical sales, marketing and general management.

In her role as Assistant Executive Director of SAAFFI, Sharon enjoyed the opportunity to nurture her interest in education and skills development, member engagement and organising events. As Executive Director, she will promote and facilitate interaction between SAAFFI members, the FMCG industry, academic institutions, and other interested sectors, while continuing to grow the training and professional development projects within SAAFFI.

SAAFFI, the South African Association of the Flavour & Fragrance Industry, represents all aspects of this fascinating industry. It unites the industry across non-competitive industry issues, freeing up individual organisations to grow their business.

For more information, please contact Michael Gristwood on michael@saaffi.co.za or Sharon Bolel on sharon@saaffi.co.za


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