As Director of Food Product Certification, Global Food Division, Sonia Acuña-Rubio ensures that NSF’s certifications provide independent verification for food label and packaging claims in all regions. In her role, she is responsible for the department’s revenue, quality and performance.
Acuña-Rubio’s team provides certifications for organic, non-GMO, kosher, plant-based, gluten-free, Raised Without Antibiotics and honey traceability and authenticity claims, in addition to bottled water and packaged ice. Acuña-Rubio oversees Quality Assurance International (QAI), an NSF company and a leading organic certification provider in global markets. She directly supports NSF’s efforts to help ensure that food products not only are compliant with various global regulations and requirements, but are also monitored for ongoing compliance.
Acuña-Rubio started her career as a food safety auditor before overseeing food safety and regulatory compliance operations for distribution centers and processing plants throughout the state of California. She joined NSF as Senior Managing Director of Latin America in 2007 and has since expanded NSF’s business in Latin America, which now includes product certification, water and sustainability programs, in addition to food safety auditing and training services. Acuña-Rubio played a pivotal role in obtaining NSF’s accreditation in Mexico for organic certification.
Acuña-Rubio holds a Bachelor of Science in agronomic engineering and a Bachelor of Science in technical engineering, both in the food industry, from the University of Santiago de Compostela. She has a Master of Science in biosystems engineering from the University of California, Davis, and a Master of Business Administration from California State University, Sacramento.
Acuña-Rubio grew up in Spain and makes frequent visits to her home country with her family, in addition to traveling to other places around the world, experiencing different cultures and meeting new people. She enjoys golfing and hiking in Northern California, where she has lived for more than 20 years.
Her areas of expertise include:
- Organic foods
- Regulations and requirements
- Food labeling
- Product claims
- Food safety