Colorado Premium, one of the country’s premier protein processors serving retailers, restaurant chains and private labels worldwide, announced the company is expanding its focus on the worldwide export market by hiring industry veteran Mark Gustafson as Director of International Sales. Gustafson was most recently the Director of International Beef Sales for JBS in Greeley.

Gustafson – who retired from JBS last year after a 38-year career that included positions with meat industry giants Monfort, U.S. Meat Export Federation, ConAgra International and Swift and Company – says he’s looking forward to the opportunity to lead the expansion of Colorado Premium’s export division. Colorado Premium currently services markets in the Middle East, Central America, the Caribbean, the Philippines, Taiwan and more, and plans to expand this base business in the sectors of food service, retail outlets, and distributors.

“We have received numerous requests for products sold into overseas markets,” said Colorado Premium CEO Kevin LaFleur. “The U.S. exports less than 10 percent of its total beef supply and we have seen demand continue to grow for value-added cuts. We believe with the increasing amount of beef available over the next several years, the export market will be an increasingly vibrant growth channel for us. We are extremely fortunate to have someone with Mark’s international meat industry experience to join our team and lead the way overseas.”   

A graduate of the University of Wyoming with a degree in Animal Science, Gustafson began his career with Monfort of Colorado, where he worked from 1977 to 1984 in production, production scheduling and international sales before joining the U.S. Meat Export Federation.

Gustafson has been an active participant in the policy-making side of the meat industry, serving on the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture’s Advisory Committee for Meat and Poultry Inspection, the Agriculture Trade Advisory Committee, the National American Meat Institute’s International Trade Committee, and the U.S. Meat Export Federation’s Executive Committee.

Gustafson is also a member of the Board of Directors for the National Western Stock Show and the Board of Governors for Colorado State University.

Source: Colorado Premium