Danny Dumas has decided to leave Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc., effective May 29. Dumas has been with Del Monte for the past 20 years and has served in many leadership roles including vice president of operations for Europe & Africa and vice president of North America sales and product management. Annunciata (Nucci) Cerioli has expanded her responsibilities from SVP, operations, North America to include sales and product management for North America and has also been promoted to the new role of senior vice president, North America which was effective May 13.

The Almond Board of California has submitted names to the Department of Agriculture for positions on its board. The individuals are as follows: Paul Ewing, Joe Gardiner, Alexi Rodriguez, Ron Fisher, Darren Rigg, Chad DeRose, George Goshgarian Jr., Christine Gemperle, Bill Morecraft, and Alicia Rockwell.

Houston Wilson has been named the presidential director for the University of California’s Organic Agriculture Institute. Wilson is a UC Riverside agricultural entomologist located at the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center. Wilson joined UC ANR as assistant Cooperative Extension specialist in 2017. The Organic Agriculture Institutewas established in January 2020 with a $500,000 endowment by Clif Bar and a matching $500,000 endowment from UC President Janet Napolitano.

Houston Wilson

Houston Wilson

Shanley Farms has hired Patrinka Crammond to work in business and program development. Crammond brings many years of experience in the produce industry, most recently working for Savor Fresh Farms Kiss Melon program in sales and retail program development.

Tom Oliveri passed away on May 28 at the age of 67. He was known to many as Tommy O, and served four decades at the Western Growers (WG). He retired from the association in January 2018. He spent many years focusing on the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA). Oliveri started his agriculture career in college as an inspector for the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Standardization Program. He earned his degree in agricultural biology from Cal Poly Pomona in 1977, soon after he began a job as a grower field representative for WG.

Christa Lachenmayr, a senior agricultural economist at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, has been appointed the commission’s liaison to the Department of Agriculture. She holds degrees from the University of Wisconsin and American University and works in CFTC’s Division of Market Oversight, with responsibility to analyze new futures contracts and compliance with the Commodity Exchange Act. CFTC also announced the hiring of Darryl Blakey as an associate director in the Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs. Blakey most recently handled market regulatory issues for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.To read more about the hires, click here.

Christa Lachenmayr

Christa Lachenmayr

Swen Neufeldt has been named group vice president and president of Hormel Foods International Corp., succeeding Larry Vorpahl, who announced his retirement after 34 years with the company. Vorpahl joined Hormel Foods in 1986 and held several senior-level positions in product management, marketing and sales during his career. Neufeldt previously served as the vice president of meat product and marketing at Hormel’s refrigerated foods division. He started his career with Hormel Foods in grocery products sales and product management.

Carrie Vicenta Meadows is settling into her role as the new agricultural adviser to Administrator Andrew Wheeler at the Environmental Protection Agency. She succeeds Tate Bennett, who is now the special assistant to President Donald Trump for agriculture and agricultural trade. Vicenta Meadows previously served as the chief of staff to Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Wash.

The World Food Program USA has added Sandra Lee to its board of directors to help increase awareness and fundraising for WFP. Lee has been a lifelong humanitarian and activist, first beginning her fight against hunger in 1985 after witnessing poverty and hunger on a trip to the Africa. WFP also added Molly Finn, current chief compliance officer for eBay, to its board of directors to help support WFP USA’s advocacy and fundraising on behalf of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).

Tom Wise now is a senior advisor for the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, focusing on fair and sustainable food systems. Wise is a senior research fellow at Tufts University. IATP is located in Minneapolis, but Wise will continue to work from Massachusetts and keep his position at Tufts.

The Food Industry Association has appointed Krystal Register to lead health and well-being initiatives for the association. She will also serve as the issue expert on all health and well-being and nutrition policy, operations, and communication issues for FMI members. Register has been a long-time Wegmans Food Markets retail dietitian.

The Equitable Food Initiative has promoted Kenton Harmer to the new position of managing director. Harmer has served as EFI's director of certification and impact since 2013, working to build relationships that allowed EFI to certify fresh produce farms for industry best practices.

Almark Foods has selected Rick Anderson to be the new CEO, effectively immediately. Anderson was most recently the CEO of Gold Coast Bakeries and brings more than 20 years of experience in the food manufacturing industry.

Drew Wallace now serves as Sen. Tom Udall’s, D-N.M., chief of staff. He previously was the legislative director.

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