Sofie Maria Gilbert Saerens holds a PhD in Bioscience engineering from KU Leuven, where she worked on aroma development by brewing yeast. After doing her PhD as well as post-doctoral research at KU Leuven, Sofie started at Chr. Hansen as an application scientist in the wine department. Sofie has moved this department a long way and taken the company into brewing microbiology. Today Sofie is the Senior Department Manager of the Fermented beverage application team, which try to pioneer the brewing industry with new innovative solutions as Pichia Kluyveri (NEER®) and the soon to be launched SmartBev™ Ale and Lager yeast.