US – Fresh Del Monte has announced the appointment of Ajai Puri, a seasoned expert with decades of experience in the food and beverage industry, to its board of directors, effective February 19, 2024.
“Dr. Puri has an extensive background in the food and beverage industry and years of global R&D, innovation, supply chain development, and consumer marketing experience,” said Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh, Fresh Del Monte Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
“We are excited to welcome him as part of our team and believe he will bring beneficial insights to our company as we continue to push innovation forward.”
Dr. Puri has held board member roles at several publicly traded and privately held companies in the food, beverage, and agricultural industries.
Currently, he is an active board member at Britannia Industries Ltd. (India), India’s largest independent food company; Olam Group Limited (Singapore), a leading global food and agriculture business; and IMI plc (U.K.), a specialist engineering and technology group.
Additionally, Dr. Puri serves as a board member at privately held Califia Farms LP, a leading plant-based milk company.
As part of his executive career, Ajai spent over 20 years at Minute Maid (part of The Coca-Cola Company) where he played an integral role in building the company’s global juice platform with products like Simply Orange™ and Minute Maid Pulpy™.
Dr. Puri holds a B.S. from the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, India; an M.S. from the Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysore, India; an M.B.A. from the Crummer Business School, Rollins College, and a Ph.D. in Food Science from the University of Maryland.
Dr. Puri joins the company at a crucial time when its inclination towards innovation is at its peak.
Recently, Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. forged a strategic alliance with Arena Packaging to introduce Reusable Plastic Containers (RPCs) for bananas.
This initiative aims to reduce food waste, cut down on carbon emissions, trim operational expenses, and notably maintain the freshness of this leading fruit in the fresh produce segment.
Moreover, the company released its 2022 Sustainability Report, reaffirming its steadfast commitment to conserving the planet.
Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. is one of the world’s leading vertically integrated producers, marketers, and distributors of high-quality fresh and fresh-cut fruit and vegetables, as well as a leading producer and distributor of prepared food in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.
In 2022 and 2023, Fresh Del Monte Produce was ranked as one of “America’s Most Trusted Companies” by Newsweek based on an independent survey rating companies on three different touchpoints, including customer trust, investor trust, and employee trust.
The company was also named a Humankind 100 Company for two consecutive years by Humankind Investments, which recognizes companies that substantially impact areas such as access to food and clean water, healthcare, and digital services.
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