Mr. Spierings says he is pleased to be taking on the role and playing a part in maximizing the contribution dairy can make to the world.
"More than ever, people are turning to dairy for nutritional security and sustainable food and every day we see the good that dairy can do.
"We also recognize that the world will have more than 2 billion more mouths to feed by 2050. With food demand expected to increase by at least 50 percent in 2050, the challenge is how best to apply the goodness of dairy to the places and people that need it the most.
"Along with the role dairy plays in everyday nutrition, there is a real opportunity to work together and look at new ways we can make the nutritional benefits of dairy more available for those facing poverty and hunger and those fighting obesity.
"Through the Global Dairy Platform, we will continue to push forward with a global effort to make the goodness of dairy contribute more by providing better nutrition, empowering our communities and promoting sustainable agriculture.
"We have made good progress since GDP was formed 11 years ago. At the same time if we are to make a real difference in a world where the pace of change is picking up, we need to be getting better every day and this will take real conviction and belief," says Mr. Spierings.
Mr. Spierings, who has been a director on the GDP Board since 2012, will succeed Dairy Farmers of America CEO Rick Smith, who has chaired the organization since 2015.
"It has been a great privilege to serve as GDP's chair," said Mr. Smith. "Over the last two years, GDP has provided strong leadership and strategic thinking to increase the credibility and visibility of the dairy sector in the international community, particularly within the United Nations. We have built a solid foundation to grow on."
Mr. Smith will continue to serve on the board along with Arla Foods Chief Executive Officer Peder Tuborgh and Royal FrieslandCampina Chief Executive Officer Roelof Joosten.
Additional governance members are Jacqueline Chow, Deputy Chair of the GDP Board and Chair of the Operational Committee, Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited; Dr. Margrethe Jonkman, Deputy Chair-Elect of the GDP Board and Chair-Elect of the Operational Committee, Corporate Director Research & Development, Royal FrieslandCampina; Dr. Judith Bryans, President, International Dairy Federation; Miles Hurrell, Chief Operating Officer-Farm Source, Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited; Jerry Kaminski, Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, International, Land O'Lakes, Inc.; Hanne Sondergaard, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Marketing & Innovation, Arla Foods amba; Frank van Ooijen, Director Communications and Sustainability, Royal FrieslandCampina; Jay Waldvogel, Senior Vice President of Strategy and International Development, Dairy Farmers of America, Inc.