Christophe Montagnon, a world renowned coffee geneticist, has been named Scientific Director at World Coffee Research (WCR). Dr Montagnon previously led the highly successful CIRAD coffee and cocoa research programmes, and has published two books and over 100 articles on coffee.
As Scientific Director, Dr Montagnon will be WCR’s chief technical officer, and will be responsible for the entire WCR research portfolio. He will lead WCR’s programme to increase volumes of quality coffee through the conception, implementation and delivery of focused, results-oriented coffee research projects and activities.
Dr Montagnon’s work will include building a WCR climate research programme aimed at developing ‘climate smart’ technologies for adapting coffee to adverse effects of climate change. He will provide support to the CEO and board of directors to help them develop WCR’s strategy for the next five-year research plan, and will implement that plan.
At CIRAD, Dr Montagnon was responsible for applied agricultural R&D for coffee and cocoa and for linking farmers to markets. He was also the CIRAD co-ordinator for all coffee and cocoa partners, academic and private, worldwide. Between 2007 and 2011, he led a major public-private alliance between ECOM and CIRAD, which was one the largest technology transfer programmes in the coffee production sector. He assisted in the establishment of the Mexican Coffee Strategic Alliance with 12 academic and private partners under the umbrella of the National Scientific Council of Mexico. Dr Montagnon founded RD2 Vision, a consulting company whose mission is to contribute to sustainable investments in tropical crops production sector.
Dr Montagnon is a founding member of several coffee initiatives such as the International Coffee Genomic Network and the Committee on Sustainability Assessment. He was formerly a scientific adviser to World Coffee Research.