The first annual VAFO Family Meet Up took place in the auditorium of the Czech University of Life Sciences (CZU). The goal of the two-day event was to meet colleagues from 8 European branches and create a space for fruitful discussions, exchanging ideas, and strengthening collaboration within the group.

VAFO Group plans to make the event an annual tradition to provide even greater supportive synergies among their branches. On January 10 and 11, attendees shared successful stories from the last year and introduced all companies within the group. Collaboration with the business incubator Point One CZU, which has been supporting innovative and ecological projects at the Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague since 2015, made it possible to hold this special event directly on the university campus.

The program was diverse and encompassed educational lectures, a tour of the university, and a joint dinner, giving participants a rich and inspiring experience. Opening remarks were delivered by Prof. Eva Vlková, Vice-Rector for Development and Sustainability at CZU, who emphasized the importance of such meetings. Day 1 concluded with a lecture by Professor Lenka Kouřimská on the topic of new proteins in human and animal nutrition, which was complemented with a tour of the university’s Faculty of Food Science.

The second day featured expert lectures by prominent figures in the pet food industry, covering a range of topics. These included D2C strategies presented by the Pooch & Mutt team, a lecture by representatives of Euromonitor, the world’s leading independent provider of market research, or insights from one of its long-standing partners, Suziria, represented by CEO Polina Kosharna. Additionally, there was a presentation on understanding customer mindsets by Jan Brejcha from VAFO Prague, and an AI Masterclass led by Milos Cermak from Inspiruj SE.