American Meat Institute Elects New Officers

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Chicago, Ill. ─ The American Meat Institute (AMI) has elected the six officers that will guide the organization through the next year. The election was held at AMI’s Annual Business Meeting during the Worldwide Food Expo, Oct. 28-31, at McCormick Place in Chicago, Ill.

Elected to the chairmanship for 2009-2010 is Jeffrey Ettinger, chairman of the board, president and CEO of Hormel Foods Corporation. He began his career with Hormel Foods in 1989 as a corporate attorney and has served in numerous leadership positions at Hormel Foods and Jennie-O Turkey Store. Ettinger was named president and chief operating officer of Hormel Foods in 2004 and was elected chief executive officer in 2005. He was elected chairman of the board for Hormel Foods in November 2006.

Dennis Vignieri, president and CEO of Kenosha Beef International, Ltd., will serve as vice-chairman for 2009-2010. Vignieri has served with the company since 1978. Prior to his current position he served as the director of transportation for 14 years. He has been a member of the Kenosha Beef Board of Directors since 1984.

Larry Odom, chairman, CEO and president of Odom’s Tennessee Pride Sausage Inc. will serve as treasurer. Odom has worked in various positions for Odom’s Tennessee Pride Sausage Inc., for 35 years, including food service regional manager, quality assurance manager and later as director of quality assurance over a three plant operation. He was plant manager from 1982-1985. Odom became executive vice president in 1985 and president in 1992. Odom was promoted in 2001 to chairman and CEO.

Elected to serve as secretary for the 2009-2010 term is Nick Meriggioli. Meriggioli is president of Oscar Mayer, a Kraft Foods Business Unit. From 2001-2006, Meriggioli served as senior vice president of marketing for the Oscar Mayer Business Unit. Prior to that, Meriggioli spent three years (1998-2001) in the Kraft Cheese and Dairy Business Unit in a number of marketing positions including director of strategy and business director for the Philadelphia Cream Cheese business.

Rod Brenneman, president and chief executive officer of Seaboard Foods, becomes immediate past chairman. J. Patrick Boyle was reelected by the AMI membership to serve a twentieth year as the Institute’s president and CEO.

“This upcoming year looks to be one that will be filled with opportunities to address issues of great importance like continued advances in food safety, sustainable business practices, immigration reform and export enhancement,” said Boyle. “The leadership and diverse experience of these new AMI officers will be critical in our efforts to continue to advance this industry. I look forward to working with them to achieve our common goals,” he added.

AMI represents the interests of packers and processors of beef, pork, lamb, veal and turkey products and their suppliers throughout North America. Together, AMI’s members produce 95 percent of the beef, pork, lamb and veal products and 70 percent of the turkey products in the United States. The Institute provides legislative, regulatory, public relations, technical, scientific and educational services to the meat and poultry packing and processing industry.

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