Invited Speakers

The following people have accepted the invitation to give a keynote or session keynote speech at the conference.
Keynote speakers

Professor Harold S. Freeman

Ciba Professor Emeritus, North Carolina State University

Professor Harold S. Freeman has experienced a 40-year career as a textile/dye chemist and served for 3 years as the team leader for the inaugural activities at NCSU that pertain to the application of biocolourants to textiles, evaluation of the technical properties of the dyed substrates, and development of analogs of natural select biocolourants. Phase 1 biocolourant application studies included waterless dyeing technologies comprising SC-CO2 and atmospheric plasma treatments, and will be extended to the use of digital printing. During Phase 2 studies, Freeman will also lead the evaluation of biocolourants for use in dye sensitized solar cells.

Interview with Professor Freeman.

Professor Laurent Dufossé

Since 2006 Professor Laurent DUFOSSÉ has a position at Reunion Island University, located in the Indian Ocean, nearby Madagascar and Mauritius. That volcanic island is one of the French overseas territories with almost one million inhabitants and 19,000 students. Previously, he was researcher and senior lecturer at the Université de Bretagne Occidentale, Quimper, France, where the congress Pigments in Food III occurred in 2004. Laurent DUFOSSÉ attended the University of Burgundy, Dijon, where he received his PhD in Food Science in 1993.

He has been involved in the field of Biotechnology of Food Ingredients for more than 33 years.

Before joining the University he was Research Project Leader at private companies such as Sanofi-SKW or Lesaffre in charge of natural aroma production using fermentation.

His main research subject is now focused on microbial production of pigments. This activity started 28 years ago and studies were and are mainly devoted to aryl carotenoids, such as isorenieratene, C50 carotenoids, adonixanthin, azaphilones and anthraquinones. Links with food science are established within the cheese industry, the sea salt industry, etc.

After being kidnapped for some years by the administration of his University in order to build the Food Science and Technology Department there, he “escaped” some years ago in order to have more time for research.

Anne de la Sayette

Mrs. Anne de la Sayette graduated in agronomy and economy. She created and lead the Regional Center for Innovation and Technological Transfer in Horticulture (CRITT) which develops various activities: greenhouses engineering, urban agriculture and natural dyes.

She initiated and managed a 20 years innovation project on natural dyes. The interdisciplinary approach has allowed to build up a large plant collection, to develop cultivation specifications and extraction processes in order to produce plant colorant extracts and pigments on an industrial scale.

She is also the head of the private company Couleurs de Plantes which extends the natural dyes production and their uses to many industrial fields such as textile, cosmetic and plastic coloring.

She was the general manager of ISEND Symposium 2011 in La Rochelle France.

She was made Chevalier de l’Ordre du Mérite in France for her contributions to innovative economy.

Session keynote speakers

Dr. Karin Altmann, University of Applied Arts Vienna, Austria

Karin Altmann is an Austrian artist and researcher. Since 2008, she has been a senior lecturer at the Department of Textile Arts at the University of Applied Arts Vienna. Her lectures mainly focus on three areas: dyeing with natural dyes, textile printing, and textile production fields. Besides, she has been developing and participating in a series of transcultural projects with international partners from Bhutan, Kyrgyzstan, Mexico, Japan, Ghana, and Mali, and also in art projects with children, people with disabilities, refugees, and women in psychological or social need. Her interests are the practical and theoretical exploration and development of the textile element as a specific mediality, with regard to its appearance and significance in art, culture and society, but also to its potential as networking model. Since 2020 she has been a member of the Advisory Council of the European Textile Network (ETN).

Karin Altmann has been engaged in artistic research on natural indigo dyeing for more than eight years and has been the Project Head of the arts-based research project “A World of Blue – Dialogues in Indigo” (

Professor Richard Blackburn, University of Leeds, United Kingdom

Richard Blackburn is Professor in Sustainable Materials at The University of Leeds in the UK. Richard’s key areas of research, focus around the principles of sustainability and how these principles can be applied in the fields of textiles, materials science, coloration technology and cosmetics. His research is important in terms of the contribution to basic research, fundamental discoveries, and influence on the direction of the field, making a significant contribution to the scientific community. Richard’s research also has significant impact in its application in terms of providing more sustainable products and processes for industry and society. Much of Richard’s research is centred around dyes and coloration processes and making them more sustainable; specifically in the field of Biocolours, Richard has done significant work in the field of anthocyanins and has developed methods to extract the pigments from waste and has developed application methods for their use in dyeing hair and textiles, and as cosmetic and food colorant.

He is a co-founder and director of University spin-out company Keracol Limited, which develops novel approaches to the extraction of active molecules from plant sources, and fractionating and purifying them for consumer applications. Keracol extracts are effectively applied in cosmetic products for hair coloration, hair care and skin care, including products that utilise biocolorants. In 2013 Richard was made a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Dyers of The City of London, and was given The Freedom of The City of London. In 2016 Richard was awarded the Silver Medal of the Society of Dyers and Colourists for Prolonged contributions to education and academic research and in 2017 the Fellowship of the Society. In both 2018 and 2019 he was awarded The Society of Dyers and Colourists Centenary Medal for best paper in the journal Coloration Technology, becoming the first author in history to win the award in two consecutive years. In 2018 Richard was co-Chair of the annual ACS Green Chemistry and Engineering Conference.

Associate Professor Heidi Halbwirth, Technical University of Vienna, Austria

Heidi Halbwirth is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Chemistry of the Technische Universität Wien and the head of the research group ‘Phytochemistry and Biochemistry of Natural Compounds’ at the Institute for Chemical, Environmental and Bioscience Engineering. Her main research interests are secondary metabolism in plants, structure-function relationships of enzymes, and the valorization of bioactive compounds from natural resources. She has acquired extensive experience in polyphenol research of different horticultural crops, working for more than 25 years on numerous national and international projects in this field, obtaining several awards in the process. While her background in the past was exclusively focused on plant derived pigments, she has recently started to expand her activities to microbial pigments and their industrial application as natural dyes.

She is the author of numerous peer reviewed articles and has successfully coordinated two Marie Curie ITNs (within FP6 and Horizon 2020), the larger one providing research training activities for 20 Early Stage Researchers and 3 Experienced Researchers in 13 teams and 10 countries and is currently in the process of building a Europe wide network to attain funding for doctoral college under the auspices of Horizon Europe Marie Curie.

Dr. Mikko Herrala, University of Eastern Finland, Finland

Mikko Herrala is a postdoctoral researcher at the School of Pharmacy, University of Eastern Finland. His research focuses on environmental health and toxicity testing of various environmental agents, including natural and synthetic dyes. In 2018, Herrala earned his Ph.D. in environmental science from the Department of Environmental and Biological Sciences at the University of Eastern Finland. Since 2019, he has been involved in the toxicity testing of biocolourants, initially within the BioColour project led by Prof. Riikka Räisänen. Subsequently, he continued this research in his own postdoctoral project, funded by the Research Council of Finland. This project aims to assess the genotoxicity and toxicity mechanisms associated with natural anthraquinone dyes. Currently, as part of this project, Mikko is on a nine-month research visit to the University of Ottawa, Canada, hosted by Prof. Carole Yauk.

Interview with Dr. Mikko Herrala.

Professor Namrita Lall, University of Pretoria, South Africa

Professor Lall is a Research Chair at the University of Pretoria and has been placed in the Essential Science Indicators list of the top 1% of publication outputs (citations) in the discipline Pharmacology and Toxicology. She has recently been listed as part of Stanford’s University List of the Top 2% Scientist of the World.

Six start-up companies named, "Bio Indigenous Solution" (a Mamelodi community-based company in Pretoria), “Tone Tribe”, "Blyde Botanics", "Anoiksen", "Scholareview" and "Looksci" (formed by Young postgraduates) resulted from Professor Lall’s research programme. She has international recognition for her research into the potential of medicinal plants for pharmaceutical and cosmeceutical purposes. Two pharmaceutical products for skin-hyperpigmentation and liver protection have been commercialized internationally and another twelve are close to commercialization. Several License Agreements have also been signed for various actives researched under Professor Lall’s supervision.


She has published more than 180 research articles, 13 patents, more than 70 book chapters, H-index is 51 and RG score is over 45 (Top 5%). Four books on medicinal plants edited by Professor Lall, have been published by ‘Elsevier’ and ‘Taylor and Francis’. She has received several awards in recognition for her work including “The Order of Mapungubwe”, South Africa’s highest honour from the Honorable South African President Jacob Zuma (April 2014), and UNESCO-L’Oreal Award for Women in Science (one of the 10 selected candidates internationally, March 2002, in Paris).

Professor Thomas Ostenfeld Larsen, Technical University of Denmark

Thomas Ostenfeld Larsen is a Professor in Microbial Natural Product Chemistry at the Technical University of Denmark. TOL’s research carrier has covered various aspects of fungal, bacterial, and microalgal natural products chemistry based on advanced chemical analysis using HPLC-DAD-HRMS/MS and NMR, with a key focus on discovery of antibiotics, myco- and phycotoxins, as well as pigments. In recent years this has included genomics driven discovery and full characterization of fungal biosynthetic pathways. TOL is currently a member of the Center of Excellence CeMiSt (, aiming at understanding the true ecological role of natural products. TOL was one of the co-founders of the DTU spin-out Chromologics Aps aiming at bringing natural fungal pigments to the market.

Dr. Gerardo Montero, Consultant Engineer for NCSU, USA

Dr. Gerardo A. Montero is experienced in Supercritical Fluid Technology (SFT) and he is the founder of Green Consultant Engineers in Raleigh, NC USA. Gerardo holds a B.Sc. (Chemical Engineering)., M.Sc. (Chemical Engineering/Polymer Science), and Ph.D. (Chemical Engineering/Soil Remediation by Supercritical Fluid Technology). Dr. Montero was born in Venezuela and came to the USA to pursue a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Vanderbilt University in 1990. In 1996, he moved to Raleigh to start a career at North Carolina State University (NCSU), College of Textiles, where he led and developed a cutting-edge technology of “Dry Dyeing Process” utilizing carbon dioxide (CO2) to increase the rate of dyeing, reactions, and treatments of textile substrates such as Polyester, Nylon 6,6 and Cotton.

Dr. Montero has been involved in the field of Supercritical Fluid Technology in different applications [such as soil remediation (Ph.D. dissertation), textile dyeing, polymer particle formation and coating by using Rapid Expansion Supercritical Fluid (RESS), polymer melt spinning, and extraction of herbal medicines compounds using carbon dioxide] for more than 30 years.

Before joining NCSU in 1996, Dr. Montero was a Research Project Leader at an Oil Company in Venezuela where he was in charge of the commercialization of innovating technology and product “Orimulsion”. He is the author and co-author of more than 35 scientific publications in different applications. Finally, Dr. Montero is a co-inventor of several international patents which were developed when he was at NCSU as well as working as a Consultant Engineer with Nike. 

Professor Alain Trémeau, University Jean Monnet, France

Alain Trémeau is full Professor at University Jean Monnet (UJM), France and member of the laboratory Hubert Curien (CNRS - UMR 5516). He is also affiliated as Affiliate Researcher at Chulalongkorn university, Thailand. His research activity covers various fields, such as Light and Matter Interactions, Color and Visual Appearance of materials, Color Constancy in Computer Vision, Color Science and Multispectral Imaging, etc. He wrote numerous scientific papers and book chapters, in the domain of Color Imaging and Computer Vision in  high ranked journals and conferences in the domain. He is member of the EMJMD COSI consortium, at UJM his teaching activities cover Color and Multispectral Image Processing, and Computer Vision.

Associate Professor Nelson R. Vinueza, NCSU, USA

Nelson R. Vinueza is an Associate Professor and Faculty Scholar in the Department of Textile Engineering, Chemistry, and Science and the Department of Chemistry at North Carolina State University. He joined NC State in August 2013 as part of the Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program. His research centers around three aspects of mass spectrometry: fundamentals, instrumentation, and applications in dyes, textiles, forensics, and biofuels. Dr. Vinueza is the Max Weaver Dye Library Director, a historical collection with approximately 100,000 synthetic dyes, where he has been creating a dye database since 2016 to enhance the use of these organic molecules in different fields through machine learning. This work is currently being used for several federal and industrial research projects. He has 10 years of experience in dye characterization by developing new mass spectrometric methods. Also, his research has focused on the biodegradation studies of reactive dyes in the soil to understand their multiple degradation pathways. He received in 2022 the Dyers’ Company Research Medal.

Dr. Vinueza’s formal education began with a B.S. in Industrial Chemistry and B.S. in Chemical Engineering at Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador. He then earned his Ph.D. in Physical Organic Chemistry from Purdue University with Professor Hilkka Kenttämaa, where he studied the chemical reactivity of carbon-center tri- and tetraradicals to design better cancer drugs. In 2010 he was a post-doctoral fellow at the Center of Direct Catalytic Conversion of Biomass to Biofuels at Purdue University. During this time, Vinueza´s research focused on developing new mass spectrometry methods for analyzing lignin and cellulose degradation products and bio-oil.

Interview with Associate Professor Vinueza.

Emeritus Professor Kumi Yoshida, Nagoya University, Japan

Kumi Yoshida is the Emeritus Professor of Nagoya University and Visiting Professor of Aichi Institute of Technology. After 6 years occupation in Research Center of Amano Enzyme Inc., she moved to Sugiyama Jogakuen University as an Assistant Professor. In 1993, she obtained her Ph.D. degree at Nagoya University under the direction of Prof. Goto and Prof. S. Marumo. In 2000, she moved to Nagoya University as an associate prof. and in April 2010 she was appointed as a full prof. of Graduate School of Information Science, Nagoya University. In 1994-1995, she stayed in Universität Konstanz (Prof. P. Böger) as a visiting research fellow, and in 2013 stayed in Helsinki University (Prof. K. Wähälä) as the scholar of Erasmus Mundus program for “Master of Science in Advanced spectroscopy in chemistry”. She received The Japan Bioscience, Biotechnology and Agrochemistry Society Award for the Encouragement of Young Scientists and in 1995, Salt Science Research Foundation Award in 1998, Groupe Poyphenols Scientific Prize in 2019 and Japan Bioscience, Biotechnology and Agrochemistry Society Award in 2023. She organized IWA2009 and ICP2014, jointly hosted with 8th Tannin Conference. Her research interests are in chemical and biological studies on flower coloration of anthocyanins, structure determination of polyphenols, synthetic studies on polyphenols (anthocyanins, flavones, flavonols, catechins, procyanidins and others), molecular biological and biochemical aspects of metal transporters involved in blue coloration, functional studies of polyphenols.

Interview with Professor Kumi Yoshida.