Gregory Gorang Named General Manager of Specialty Food Ingredients - Other Executive Appointments Made in Conjunction With New Pasteurization Service

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Specialty Food Ingredients (SFI) announces appointments related to its strategy to become the leader in high- specification nut and seed pasteurization and food ingredient processing.

Gregory Gorang, General Manager, Specialty Food Ingredients

These personnel appointments are as important to our aggressive food safety strategy as the millions we spent on our new pasteurization equipment,” adds Leitner.

Gregory Gorang, a 20+-year employee of Diamond Foods, Inc., has been named General Manager of the Lodi, California-based division, replacing industry veteran, Kelly Suess, who will move to a consulting role prior to his retirement later this year. “Greg’s industry experience and leadership style made him the natural choice for us as we looked for someone to follow in the footsteps left by Kelly,” said Specialty CEO, Larry Leitner. “Kelly remained on this past year, after our purchase of Lodi Nut Co., to oversee the installation of our new multi-million dollar steam/vacuum pasteurization system. Now, he hands the reigns to Greg, having built a solid legacy operation, and deploying the new technology that will carry us into an exciting future.”

Gorang has held key operations, sales and technical positions with Diamond Foods Inc. since joining in 1990. His most recent position was Senior Director of US and Canada Ingredient Sales and Research and Development.

With the expansion of services offered at the GFSI, QAI-certified Lodi facility, including the non-chemical pasteurization service, Specialty has made other key appointments:

David M. Pedro, a food safety microbiologist with 34 years of experience in the California food production industry, has been named Director of Food Technology/Pasteurization Services. Pedro’s career includes 20 years at Diamond Walnut Growers. For the past 16 years, he has been the Resident Technical Director for Lodi Nut Co., before it was purchased by SFI. His now-expanded role includes management of the company’s new steam/vacuum pasteurization service.

Tim Wilburn, has joined as Quality Manager, over SFI’s quality certifications, and its global food safety audit program management. His 20-year food processing industry career has included Del Monte Foods, as well as managing quality, safety and security programs for Jacobson Companies, assigned to their Ghirardelli and Lindt Chocolate accounts.

Carole Inman is the division’s new VP of Sales & Marketing, overseeing the division’s brand development, and management of its sales and food broker organizations. Her 30-year sales and marketing career has included corporate sales and marketing roles with Microsoft’s Great Plains Business Solutions, as well as marketing agency roles with firms representing Jennie-O Turkeys, Lund Boats and other national brands.

“These personnel appointments are as important to our aggressive food safety strategy as the millions we spent on our new pasteurization equipment,” adds Leitner. “We are sending a message to our customers that they can protect their brand by using our brand. We’ve become the safe supply chain solution not just with our 5-log kill, but by delivering it through one of the most experienced teams of professionals in the specialty food ingredient industry.”

Specialty Food Ingredients is a division of Specialty Commodities Inc., Fargo, ND. SFI procures nuts, seeds, ancient grains and related products then oil and dry roasts, salts, dices, pasteurizes and packages to specification. Information at

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