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Latest news on food and beverage entrepreneurs, CEOs and new hires


Who are the entrepreneurs that are driving innovation in the food and beverage industry? Who's moving onwards and upwards in the food industry? And who are the names and faces behind huge companies such as PepsiCo and Kellogg? Check out this section of FoodNavigator-USA to see the personalities behind brands from Chobani to Justin's nut butters.

Introducing the FoodNavigator-USA Food Innovation Forum in partnership with FOOD VISION USA 2017

What’s the secret to developing winning food and beverage products (and can 'Big Food' still innovate)?

What’s the secret to developing winning food and beverage products? Hard data and insight… or intuition and stardust?  And can ‘Big Food’ still create winners, or should it throw in...

Dean Foods buys Uncle Matt's: 'It further underscores our commitment to the organic space'

Dean Foods – best-known for dairy brands such as Dean’s, Dairy Pure and Land O Lakes -  has acquired organic juice maker Uncle Matt’s Organic for an undisclosed sum as...

Ben Weiss leaves Bai Brands; Lain Hancock to take over: 'This is the culmination of an amazing journey'

Bai Brands founder Ben Weiss has left the company he created in his basement in Princeton, New Jersey in 2009, five months after selling it to Dr Pepper Snapple Group...

Gobble founder: 'We are one of the most lean, capital efficient companies in the meal kit market today'

While barely a week goes by without the launch of a new meal kit company, there is room in the market for “many multi-billion dollar players,” provided they carve out...

SmashMallow approaching run rate of $25m in 6-12 months, predicts CEO: 'It’s growing exponentially faster than KRAVE'

The SmashMallow snackable marshmallow brand – launched by food & beverage brand incubator Sonoma Brands in August 2016 – is “charging towards a very visible $25m dollar run rate in...

Grainful closes $3.3m financing round as Americans embrace savory oats

Savory oats pioneer Grainful has already convinced a growing number of consumers on the east and west coasts that steel-cut oats aren’t just for breakfast, and has now persuaded investors...

Soylent ticks ‘health, nutrition, sustainability and disruptive innovation’ boxes, says new president Bryan Crowley

Former KeVita exec Bryan Crowley has joined Los Angeles-based Soylent as president as the firm seeks to grow its bricks & mortar retail footprint, develop new products and expand overseas...

Conagra Brands appoints new CIO, remains silent over Pinnacle Foods rumors

Conagra Brands has promoted Mindy Simon, VP of global business services (GBS), to the role of chief information officer, effective June 1.

Chef’d CEO: ‘Our customer acquisition costs are about a tenth of what the competitive set is paying’

Thanks to its unique partnership model, wider selection, and no subscription fees, customer acquisition costs at meal-delivery firm Chef’d are significantly lower than rivals,’ claims founder and CEO Kyle Ransford,...

‘Unprecedented traction’ of Hippeas attracts Leonardo DiCaprio, Strand Equity Partners

Leonardo DiCaprio – who has already shown quite an interest in the food and beverage sector via investments in guayusa-fueled tea brand RUNA and seafood company Love the Wild –...

Designers weigh in on Hampton Creek’s new look: ‘It's anti-branding, it's simply food’

Hampton Creek has unveiled a colorful new look for its plant-based brand. But what do branding experts think of the redesign? 

McBurney: ‘Nutrition status measurements will enter the era of home pregnancy testing’

We should ‘shift from measuring food intake to measuring nutritional status,’ argues expert

“It is time to change the nutrition dialogue from an obsession about what foods we put into our body to objective measures of nutritional status,” according to one nutrition thought...

Are you an innovation trailblazer? Then take center stage at FOOD VISION USA 2017

We’re searching for trailblazing, entrepreneurial start-ups to present their red hot food and nutrition innovations at Food Vision USA in Chicago on November 13, 2017. 

News in brief

Jeff Harmening to take the helm at General Mills on June 1: 'He is not afraid to challenge the status quo'

General Mills president and COO Jeffrey L. Harmening will become CEO on June 1, 2017, succeeding Ken Powell, who will continue to serve as chairman for a transition period until...

Spindrift raises $10m in funding round led by VMG Partners

Sparkling water brand Spindrift has raised $10 million in a funding round led by VMG Partners and supported by Prolog Ventures, Karp Reilly, and other existing investors. 

Farmer’s Fridge CEO: ‘We won't stop until it’s easier to get a salad than a candy bar’

Can you make money supplying fresh prepared food via vending machines? Not everyone was convinced when Luke Saunders launched Farmer’s Fridge in October 2013, but the fact he's just persuaded...

NEW HIRES GALLERY: Conagra hires innovation chief, Klock stops at Sparkling ICE, new blood at RUNA

Check out who’s moving onwards and upwards at Coca-Cola, Hershey, Conagra Brands, Mondelez, RUNA, D's Naturals, Hippeas, Teton Waters Ranch and JUST Goods in FoodNavigator-USA’s latest round-up of new hires...

News in brief

Fancy a cruise through Chicago’s waterways with the bosses of SPINS, Presence Marketing and KeHE?

Are your taste buds tickled by the prospect of a food tour of Mexico with Chef Rick Bayless? Or maybe an intensive business strategy session with Presence Marketing CEO Bill...

Sir Kensington's co-founder: 'We wanted to make sure that we weren’t going to be swallowed up and de-prioritized'

Does selling up mean selling out? Not if you go in with your eyes open, say the co-founder of upmarket condiments brand Sir Kensington's, which has just jumped into bed...

The FoodNavigator-USA reader survey results: ‘We’re in the 3G era... where cost cutting is valued over growth’

The results of the 2017 FoodNavigator-USA reader survey are in… and not surprisingly, given the breadth of our readership, they’re pretty mixed, with many readers excited about their company’s prospects...

Mark Rampolla: Beanfields could be a $20-30m snack business before you even think about brand extensions

 “So why does the world need another [insert your product here]?” is a question entrepreneurs are well-advised to prep for before hitting the stage at any pitch slam judged by ZICO...

good culture CEO: ‘We’re looking to scale pretty aggressively over the next 1-2 years’

Grass-fed cottage cheese brand good culture – which launched in August 2015 with organic ingredients and some edgy savory flavors - is confident it will be in 6,000 stores by...

Snyder’s-Lance CEO retires amid unsatisfactory results

Snyder’s-Lance has announced the surprise retirement of CEO Carl Lee Jnr (56) amid disappointing performance results for the first quarter of 2017.

On the move

Mondelēz and Bazooka Candy announce North America leadership changes

Mondelēz and the Topps’ confectionery division Bazooka Candy Brands have announced new leaders for their North American businesses.

Flexibility will distinguish winners from losers in the meal kit category, says Terra's Kitchen CEO

Are meal kits the next big thing in food, or a black hole into which to pour large sums of cash chasing the latest fad? Investors are in different camps...

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