International Food Information Council (IFIC) announced that Chief Executive Officer Joseph Clayton will step down after 6.5 years leading the nonprofit science communications and consumer research organization. Since 1985, IFIC has promoted evidence-based information on nutrition, food safety, and agricultural production to consumers and health professionals while conducting a decades-long series of consumer research programs at the intersection of food, health, and consumer perception.  

“Over the last six years, Joe has built strong IFIC communications and education programs that have increased the visibility of evidence and science-based information about food, diet, and health,” said IFIC Co-Chair Russell Dyer, chief communications officer and head of public and government affairs at Mondelēz International. “He leaves an extremely capable staff of experts in nutrition, food production, and science communications that will serve IFIC well as we conduct a search for a new CEO.”  

“IFIC’s consumer research programs expanded and sharpened significantly under Joe’s leadership and have enabled IFIC to become an authoritative source on how Americans understand the role of food and diet in their health,” said Regan Bailey, Ph.D., associate director of the Institute for Advancing Health Through Agriculture at Texas A&M University. “IFIC’s research informs government, industry, and academia on consumer attitudes and knowledge gaps in food and health, information that is lacking and desperately needed for both public education and policy making.”         

“It’s been a special six years and a privilege to help advance IFIC’s mission and programs,” said Clayton. “We’ve taken major steps to expand IFIC’s reach as a source of evidence-based information about food and strengthen our research agenda to better understand how consumers approach decisions at the intersection of food and health. IFIC is more prepared than ever to promote actionable, science-based food information.”   

A Search Committee comprised of private sector and public academic sector IFIC members, supported by Lorraine Lavet, will manage the search for Clayton’s replacement. Clayton will continue leading IFIC until early 2023 to ensure a smooth and seamless transition.