In the October issue, The National Provisioner honored 25 past icons who made their mark on industry since 1991. This month, to wrap up the magazine’s coverage of its 125th Anniversary, the editorial team decided to take on a bigger challenge: Select 25 individuals we expect will change the industry over the next decade or two. As such, we present our 25 Future Icons.
In similar fashion to our Past Icons, Future Icons were nominated by industry peers, and final selections were determined by the editorial staff of The National Provisioner. If last month’s list of Past Icons didn’t spark any debate, we are certain this list of Future Icons will.
Again, we believe we have chosen an excellent list — who would be on yours? The future is now; let the debate begin:
Certified Angus Beef’s own “Dr. Phil” already has developed a bit of a cult following among meat scientists, chefs and culinarians who work with beef. Bass’ collaboration with chefs (in-house and at the customer level) sets a stellar example for how the industry can work with end users to innovate new, useful cuts of beef and novel uses for those cuts.
Booren’s new role as senior policy adviser at OFW Law will allow her to remain front-and-center as a strong influence on the industry’s direction at the regulatory/legislative level. In her previous role with the North American Meat Institute, Booren set the tone for what’s to come, always stressing science as the foundation for policy and regulatory decisions — a belief she is expected to continue to champion at OFW Law.
Brashears’ dedication to research and contribution to education in the areas of food safety and food microbiology stand out, as well as her accomplishments in bringing much-needed scientific knowledge to the meat industry. Brashears has improved the critical thinking skills of students, domestic and foreign, and has stimulated discussion and implementation of new ideas to improve the food and livestock industries.
Bruett has been a vocal proponent of the work of the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (GRSB) and possibly its most open book in terms of sharing innovative stories between processors, customers and stakeholders in that arena. He has been and should continue to be a champion of sustainability initiatives across beef, pork and chicken, given his position with JBS USA.
Bush is a fast-rising up-and-comer in the industry, growing more involved and more visible at industry-related events as time passes. Bush represents his family’s fifth-generation processing company (Bush Brothers) on the North American Meat Institute’s Board of Directors and served previously on the boards for NAMA and NAMP. He’s an approachable, vocal influence who peers believe is bound for great things in the industry.
Delmore oversaw the design of the Meat Processing Center at Cal Poly State University, and he currently is working on the new Global Food Innovation Center at Colorado State — in addition to teaching meat science, meat safety and meat processing. His expertise is wide-ranging and widely respected, and his nomination states, simply: “Delmore is a tremendous asset to the industry and academia — his many contributions are equaled by few and exceeded by none.”
Gehring has developed a strong research program focused on food safety and nutritional composition of meat products, and has disseminated food-safety information across the U.S. by serving on multiple panels and programs. Gehring has conducted industry HACCP/food-safety training courses for more than 2,000 people and provides valuable assistance with HACCP implementation today. Her dedication to food safety has been recognized through numerous national and international honors and awards.
Hankes is part of the second generation of his family to run Thrushwood Farms Quality Meats of Galesburg, Ill. He’s helped guide the company through numerous expansions as it has phased out custom meat processing in favor of its nationally distributed snack sticks and other cured meat products. He was elected president of AAMP in July, where his potential to impact the industry will certainly increase.
Hayes brings veteran consumer-products experience to Tyson Foods, and is expected to help the company leverage its scale and develop brands to drive growth. Hayes was appointed Tyson Foods president in June 2016, and his ultra-versatile prior experience in various executive roles at several CPG companies make him an excellent candidate to drive the success of the numerous legacy brands that Tyson Foods now owns.
Johnson Smith was named president and CEO of the alliance in 2011 and is a leading advisor on farm animal-welfare issues. As a national spokesperson, she provides hundreds of presentations and interviews to media, government and industry stakeholders about the importance of animal agriculture, and stresses the need for a unified voice to represent animal agriculture’s interests. Johnson Smith also provides strategic guidance to managing activist campaigns.
Larsen has applied innovative leadership and technical expertise on critical issues, and his proficiency concerning issues affecting foreign and domestic food, agricultural technical trade barriers, market access, and food safety and quality is both extensive and unmatched. Larsen has established a reputation for his consummate ability to manage multifaceted projects, resources, issues and constraints through complex pre- and post-harvest pork safety, quality, and nutrition initiatives.
Under Remington’s direction, Foster Farms has developed and brought to market new and innovative products — specifically in the frozen cooked chicken product categories — helping move the company from regional leader to national contender. Not only has Foster Farms transformed its product-development pipeline and product offerings on her watch, but the company’s product-innovation work may yet revolutionize the chicken products that consumers see across the country.