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KENT J. SWISHERThe NORTH AMERICAN RENDERERS ASSOCIATION named KENT J. SWISHER as its incoming president & CEO. He will also serve as president of the Fats and Proteins Research Foundation (FPRF), the rendering industry’s research organization. Swisher will assume leadership upon the retirement of current NARA president and CEO Nancy Foster on December 31.


WISDOM NATURAL BRANDS, makers of SweetLeaf sweeteners and Wisdom of the Ancients natural foods and beverages, announced that company President MICHAEL P. MAY, Ph.D., has been additionally appointed chief executive officer. Formerly, he served as vice president of business development, COO, and executive vice president prior to assuming his role as president in 2017.


WETZEL’S PRETZELS appointed KIM FREER as chief marketing officer. Recognized as a proven leader in the restaurant industry, she brings a wealth of franchise marketing experience across a portfolio of nationally recognized brands. In her new role, Freer will support the company’s continued growth, with enhancements to its menu, ease of ordering and digital infrastructure.


BURNS & MCDONNELL hired DAVID CAMPBELL to lead design and construction solutions for distribution and warehouse facilities throughout the U.S. automation and warehouse logistics market. Industry Leader Campbell will manage projects for a wide range of clients across multiple industries. Campbell has two decades of engineering, project management and automation experience. In addition to Campbell, Burns & McDonnell has assembled a veteran team of cold chain logistics solutions professionals with nearly 175 years of combined experience in design and construction for prepared foods, protein, e-commerce, food processing, leased warehouse, food service and retail/grocer facilities nationwide. Team members include: Jeremy Klysen, Kelly Hyvonen, David Stephani, Joseph Scovronski and John Hatzung.


CRB has hired TAMMY MCCONAUGHY as the director of lean delivery. McConaughy has 18 years of experience in the construction industry and 15 years of experience applying lean principles to capital projects. She joins CRB most recently from JE Dunn, where she was a senior lean specialist, focused on coaching and supporting teams in utilizing lean tools.


YUM! BRANDS, INC. announced that AARON POWELL, former president of Kimberly-Clark Corporation’s Asia-Pacific Consumer Business, has joined the company as global Pizza Hut Division chief executive officer, reporting to Yum! Chief Executive Officer David Gibbs. In this role, Powell will assume global responsibility for driving Pizza Hut Division’s growth strategies, franchise operations and performance. 

The KRAFT HEINZ COMPANY announced that ABBY BLUNT, who has led the company’s Washington, D.C.-based Global Government Affairs team since 2012, has been appointed strategic advisor for government & ESG Affairs and advisor to the Board. After a distinguished 20-year career with Kraft Heinz, she will transition to this new role in a part-time capacity, allowing her to focus on the two corporate boards she has recently been asked to join, while still supporting Kraft Heinz initiatives. Assuming Blunt’s former position, BILL BEHRENS joins Kraft Heinz as vice president, global head of government affairs.

FORCE CONTROL INDUSTRIES announces the retirement of RICK FUHRMAN after an impressive 47 ½ year career. Through nearly five decades, he has held various positions within the company, mainly within inside sales as inside sales manager, traffic manager, and most recently as export sales manager. 

MARS PETCARE announced the appointment of RUBEN CEJUDO to Mars Pet Nutrition North America’s leadership team, a division of Mars Petcare. Cejudo joins as vice president of the company’s North American Supply Chain, helping to enhance the company’s supply chain.

BECKHOFF USA hired RYAN DUSK as Northeast district sales manager. Dusk will oversee Beckhoff operations and continued growth in sales and market share in key Northeast U.S. markets. Most recently, Dusk served as regional sales manager for Mitsubishi Electric Automation, covering Canada and the Northeastern U.S.

Grocery retailer and distributor SPARTANNASH promoted TYLER KING from senior director to vice president, finance and finance business partner for the company’s retail business segment.

MINEBEA INTEC has strengthened its management level with the appointment of PETER STEINER as its new chief sales officer. Steiner succeeds Frank Wieland.

DE WAFELBAKKERS, LLC appointed MICHAEL O’DONNELL as its new president of Sales. De Wafelbakkers was recently purchased by BRYNWOOD PARTNERS VIII L.P., an operationally-focused, lower middle market private equity fund based in Greenwich, CT.

JBT CORPORATION announced the promotion of ROBERT PETRIE to the position of executive vice president and president, protein. He succeeds Paul Sternlieb, who resigned from JBT in connection with his acceptance of the CEO position at an industrial public company.

KEURIG DR PEPPER appointed TONY MILIKIN as its chief supply chain officer, replacing Fernando Cortes.

WYNRIGHT CORPORATION, a Daifuku group company, has named CORY FLEMINGS executive vice president for sales. Flemings will lead the Wynright sales team in selling advanced automated material handling systems in North America. 

TNA SOLUTIONS, announced the appointment of two new regional sales managers in North America. With extensive experience serving food manufacturers across the United States, STEVE JOHNSON and TIMOTHY UPSHUR will bring greater value to customers searching for fast, flexible, end-to-end food processing and packaging solutions.

SHAPE PROCESS AUTOMATION GROUP, a global supplier of advanced materials cutting and a full-service systems robotics integrator, announced the appointment of SARGON HADDAD to the position of vice president – Burlington division, located in Ontario, Canada.

PLANTX LIFE INC. appointed FRED LEIGH as a director and executive chairman of the Board of Directors of the company.

The GLOBAL FOOD SAFETY INITIATIVE, The Consumer Goods Forum’s Coalition of Action on food safety, has announced that six industry experts have been added to its Steering Committee. They include: 

  • HUGO BYRNES, vice president product integrity, Ahold Delhaize
  • MARK FRYLING, vice president global food safety and quality, General Mills
  • SARA MORTIMORE, vice president, global food safety, Walmart
  • CARLETTA OOTON, vice president - product assurance, risk and security, Amazon
  • NATALIA SOMER, director of department of quality management system, Magnit
  • NELUM VITHANA, manager corporate - product research & development, Cargill

CYCLYX INTERNATIONAL, a consortium-based plastic feedstock management company with a mission to increase the recycling rates of post-use plastic from 10% to 90%, announced the addition of three new members to its Executive Advisory Board (EAB). They include: DR. RON ABBOTT, sustainability technology manager at Chevron Phillips Chemical; RICARDO CUETOS, vice president Standard Products Americas at INEOS Styrolution America LLC.; and DR. GANESH NAGARAJAN, associate director for Polymer Business Development & Projects at LyondellBasell.

KUECKER PULSE INTEGRATION welcomed RUY SOTELLO as the company’s resident maintenance technician. He joins the KPI family with more than 32 years as a technician in the maintenance field. KPI also welcomed ALEX DACK as its corporate controller.

FRESHLOCAL SOLUTIONS INC. announced the appointment of SIMON CAIRNS, a leading executive in technology platform services, to the newly created leadership role of president, Food-X Technologies Inc. He will be responsible for leading the growth and development of Freshlocal’s high potential grocery eCommerce business, which is focused on the provision of FoodX’s SaaS-based eGrocery Management Solution (eGMS) to a global retail grocer client base. 

UPWARD FARMS, an aquaponic vertical farm, named seasoned consumer packaged goods (CPG) executive ERIC GREIFENBERGER vice president of marketing and sales. With 25 years of experience in the CPG space, Greifenberger has spent his career shaping strategies and driving profitable growth for brands across the food and beverage industry.


Three companies, GIVAUDAN, BÜHLER, and MIGROS, have formed a new entity, “The Cultured Food Innovation Hub,” in Kemptthal (near Zurich), to accelerate the development and market penetration of cellular agriculture products. There are many arguments supporting the mass suitability of cultured meat: meat without slaughter or factory farming, a significantly better climate balance, no use of antibiotics, and ensured food security. The Cultured Food Innovation Hub will start operations next year.

BOSCH REXROTH has developed a marketplace in line with the app-based control platform ctrlX CORE, which features apps developed both by Bosch Rexroth and third-party providers and includes the option for users to create their own customized applications and libraries. As such, new automation and control functions can be added to ctrlX CORE at any time. The ctrlX Store provides users with a broad range of apps and enabling them to set up a customized software system. Users can purchase any app in the ctrlX Store and install it on ctrlX CORE.

The winners of the PMMI’s 2021 TECHNOLOGY EXCELLENCE AWARDS AT PACK EXPO are CANOVATION, P.E. LABELLERS and HIPERBARIC. Canovation’s CanReseal is a can end design that adds threading just below the ubiquitous double-seam. This allows a metal closure to be screwed into the top of the can to create an air and liquid tight seal. P.E. Labellers’ Simpl-Cut, is roll-fed labeling, which solves two major weaknesses inherent in the design of traditional roll-fed labelers and has proven to offer exceptional performance and flexibility. Hiperbaric In-Bulk technology is based on a new HPP concept, in which beverages are processed in-bulk prior to bottling.

ADM unveiled the ADM Food Technology (Pinghu) Co., Ltd., a state-of-the-art, fully automated flavor production facility situated in Pinghu, Zhejiang Province, China. In another announcement, ADM reached an agreement to acquire a 75% ownership stake in PETDINE, PEDIGREE OVENS, THE POUND BAKERY and NUTRADINE (P4 Companies), providers of private label pet treats and supplements. 

MULTIVAC is continuing its course of expansion in Asia. The company is constructing a new multi-purpose building, costing around 20 million euros, in the Japanese city of Tsukuba. Future areas of growth will include integrated systems, as well as the products from the FRITSCH and TVI business units.

TEKNI-PLEX has completed its acquisition of rigid packaging solutions supplier GRUPO PHOENIX, putting the company in a stronger position to broaden its market-focused, customer-driven innovations, especially in food and beverage markets.

ATS AUTOMATION TOOLING SYSTEMS INC. has acquired NCC AUTOMATED SYSTEMS, INC., a provider of engineered-to-order sanitary automation solutions and stand-alone precision conveyance equipment, for $40 million.

AVERY DENNISON has completed its acquisition of VESTCOM, a privately held provider of pricing and branded labeling solutions at the shelf-edge for retailers and consumer packaged goods companies.

YUM! BRANDS, INC. completed its acquisition of DRAGONTAIL SYSTEMS LIMITED, a provider of technology solutions for the food industry.

ICE CUBE COLD STORAGE & LOGISTICS has completed the acquisition of the Main Terminal Division of MARITIME INTERNATIONAL INC., located on MacArthur Drive in New Bedford, Massachusetts.

NOMAD FOODS, European frozen food company, and BLUENALU, a food company developing a variety of seafood products directly from fish cells, will explore the introduction of cell-cultured seafood in Europe, where demand for sustainably produced, healthy seafood products continues to grow. 

OTERRA has signed an agreement to acquire DIANA FOOD’S coloring business. Oterra will fully integrate Diana Food’s natural coloring business into its world class offering. Diana Food is currently owned by Symrise AG, a global supplier of fragrances, flavors, food, nutrition, and cosmetic ingredients.

CARGILL has introduced a new revenue stream for farmers as part of a ten-million acre regenerative agriculture commitment. Cargill RegenConnect links farmers to the emerging carbon marketplace and helps scale the voluntary adoption of regenerative agriculture practices.

WAYNE FARMS’ ANNUAL CARRIER AWARDS FOR 2021 recognized Penske Logistics with the Outstanding Service Award, Syfan Logistics as the Broker of the Year and Brannon Golden Trucking as Carrier of the Year. In addition, Outstanding Service (Individual) went to Trapper Brissey of P&E Trucking and Tammy Bush, Wayne Farms customer logistics manager.

LOGILITY, INC., a supply chain software provider, has partnered with PWC to bring the latest innovation in supply chain technology and services enabling digital transformation to strengthen its local Brazilian market presence.

EMMI ROTH, in partnership with Emmi Group, has acquired ATHENOS from the Lactalis Group.

UNIBLOC PUMP, the Georgia-based manufacturer of sanitary pumps, has acquired UK-based FLOTRONIC PUMPS. Flotronic Pumps created the “One Nut” pump, which provides easy assembly and disassembly for efficient maintenance, leading to increased performance and lower maintenance costs.

ROYAL DSM signed an agreement to acquire FIRST CHOICE INGREDIENTS, a supplier of dairy-based savory flavorings, for $453 million.

FLEXXRAY, supplier of inspection systems to food and beverage processors, is opening a new manufacturing facility in Fort Mill, South Carolina, which will create 100-200 new jobs.

ARDENT MILLS announced its intention to acquire substantially all the business assets of FIREBIRD ARTISAN MILLS, a gluten-free, specialty grain and pulse milling company that is part of operating holding company, Agspring.

SOUTH CAROLINA OAK TO BARREL, LLC, a barrel manufacturer, plans to establish operations in Bamberg County, South Carolina. The more than $6.8 million investment will create 122 new jobs.

UNIVERSAL CORPORATION has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire SHANK’S EXTRACTS, INC., a privately-held, specialty ingredient, flavoring and food company with bottling and packaging capabilities.

TRUVANT, a supplier of packaging services solutions, will open a 355,517-sq.-ft. building in Hazlet, Texas (within the Dallas/Fort Worth metro area). The facility is expected to open in early 2022.

MODERN PLANT-BASED FOODS INC. will launch a plant-based seafood division, Modern Seafood, which will focus on research and development, production and manufacturing of plant-based seafood alternatives. 

EVANESCE, a sustainable technology supplier, announced new operations in Early Branch, South Carolina. The $17 million investment will create 78 new jobs.

EVIOSYS has formed as a new sustainable packaging solutions supplier after the purchase of Crown Holdings Inc.’s EMEA food and packaging business by KPS Capital Partners.

PRETIUM PACKAGING has signed a definitive agreement to acquire ALPHA CONSOLIDATED HOLDINGS, INC., a provider of sustainable packaging solutions.

BERRY GLOBAL GROUP, INC. will invest more than $110 million to expand its foodservice packaging manufacturing operations in North America as part of its long-term strategic growth commitments. 

GS FOODS GROUP, INC. acquired C&C PRODUCE, a specialty distributor of produce products based in Kansas City, Missouri. 

BENSON HILL, INC. entered into a definitive agreement to purchase a soybean crushing facility from Seymour, Indiana-based ROSE ACRE FARMS.


TATE & LYLE’s two corn wet mills in Loudon, Tennessee and Lafayette South, Indiana have been awarded the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Energy Star certification.

ROQUETTE, a global supplier in plant-based ingredients and a pioneer of plant proteins, opened a center of expertise of 2,000 square meters on its site in Vic-Sur-Aisne (Hauts-de-France, France).

ROOTS FOOD GROUP, a technology, healthcare, philanthropic and food company that believes in creating healthy outcomes through “Food is Medicine,” has signed a letter of intent with BE MY EYES to provide medically tailored meals to their community of 5M+ volunteers, blind and visually impaired individuals.