Fabian Wahl to Take Charge of ’Food Microbial Systems’ Research Division

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Fabian Wahl

Fabian Wahl

Bern, 30.11.2017 - Agroscope Council has appointed Dr. Fabian Wahl as Head of the ’Food Microbial Systems’ Strategic Research Division and successor to Hans-Peter Bachmann. The chemist Wahl currently works for the internationally active science and technology firm Merck KGaA in Darmstadt, Germany. He will take up his new post on 1 May 2018.

Professional career in the Merck Group

Born in 1964 in Karlsruhe, Germany, Dr. Fabian Wahl has worked since October 2015 for the Merck Group, an internationally leading science and technology company in the healthcare, life science and performance materials sectors. As Head of New Business in the Strategy & Transformation area of Merck KGaA, he has joint responsibility for developing and implementing a new corporate strategy based on the central pillars of digitisation and innovation.  

Previously, Fabian Wahl had worked since 1993 at Sigma-Aldrich, which was taken over by Merck in 2015. Latterly, he served as Global Director of Corporate Development at this world-leading manufacturer and distributor of chemical, biochemical and pharmaceutical research materials. In this capacity, he led a global team of experts based in Switzerland, the USA, the United Kingdom and India, and was responsible for developing and implementing a business strategy based on organic and inorganic growth components for the analytical portfolio.

Chemistry Degree and PhD in Germany
Fabian Wahl studied Chemistry at the University of Freiburg, Germany, and also received his PhD in Freiburg, in Organic and Analytical Chemistry; his doctoral thesis was entitled ’The Pagodane Route to Dodecahedranes - An Improved Approach to the C20H20 Parent Framework andTotal Functionalizations’.
Fabian Wahl is married and has three daughters. He is a dual citizen of Germany and Switzerland and lives with his family in Buchs in the canton of St. Gallen.

Hans-Peter Bachmann’s Successor

In addition to becoming a member of the Executive Board, Fabian Wahl will be taking over as Head of the ’Food Microbial Systems’ Strategic Research Division at Agroscope on 1 May 2018. Wahl succeeds Hans-Peter Bachmann, who has carried on working for Agroscope as a Staff Research Scientist in the Crops, Biodiversity and Terroir’ Research Group since stepping down as Head of the Division.

In his new role, Fabian Wahl will rise to the challenges confronting the Swiss agriculture and food sector in the sphere of microorganism biodiversity. The findings from selected food microbial systems form the basis for the targeted use of microorganisms for high-quality, safe and healthy foods such as cheese. This is because foods fermented with exclusive cultures from the Agroscope Strain Collection are meant to possess a substantial competitive edge in terms of quality, safety, health or authenticity.  

Fabian Wahl is ideally equipped for his job at Agroscope: Thanks to his many years of professional activity, he possesses a longstanding experience in innovation management, as well as in collaboration between academia and industry.

Agroscope: New 2018-21 Work Programme

With the choice of Fabian Wahl, the Executive Board of Agroscope - the Swiss Federal Centre of Excellence for Research in the Agriculture and Food Sector - is once again complete. Since 1 January 2017, the reorganised Agroscope has been functioning as ten management units - seven Strategic Research Divisions and three Centres of Excellence for Research Technology and Knowledge Exchange.  In addition, the Centre for Excellence starts off the new 2018-2021 Work Programme next year. With its reorganisation and the new Work Programme, Agroscope possesses optimal conditions for a successful forthcoming performance period: Agroscope will be able to respond more flexibly to the concerns of the different stakeholder groups, including farmers, businesses, associations, public authorities and science; and its range of activities is being specifically tailored to the main challenges of the agriculture and food sector. In addition, the needs of the stakeholder groups have been surveyed and incorporated into the strategic framework.