Johan den Hartog, GMP+ International’s founder and managing director up until 2021, has been appointed Officer in the Order of Orange Nassau, a Dutch Royal honour for people who have rendered outstanding service to society.
Johan received the honor in return for his “fierce dedication to and advocacy for feed safety spanning over 4 decades” according to a press release.
Den Hartog was awarded this honour and accompanying ribbon on stage at the Berlin Congress Centre where the 3-day Global Feed Safety Summit is being held (7-9 April). The ribbon was presented by Peter Vermeij, Agricultural Counsellor of the Dutch Embassy in Germany, who lauded Johan’s service in both public and private life.
“Johan’s many activities are of special value to society.”
According to Vermeij, Den Hartog succeeded in ‘an almost impossible task’ when he brought the Dutch feed chain together in the early nineties to establish Good Manufacturing Practices. These guidelines would later become the global GMP+ Feed Certification scheme.
“Johan is working tirelessly to take the scheme to new heights,” Vermeij said, adding that his efforts over the past 4 decades have made a huge contribution toward making the Netherlands a world leader in feed safety systems.
At the Global Feed Safety Summit where he was honoured, Den Hartog was visibly taken by surprise. “I am speechless,” he said when called on stage. “I am incredibly grateful. I did what I thought needed to be done,” Den Hartog said, referring to the founding of the scheme.
He thanked God, his wife, his children, and his GMP+ team. “I appreciate this decoration very much and will wear it humbly and with honor.” Den Hartog emphasized that the scheme’s growth is the result of a team effort and that it “shows that together you can achieve great things, even when you have competing interests”.