The American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI), on the eve of its February 21-25 Don’t Stop Believin’!-themed annual convention in Anaheim, California, announced the hiring of Dr. Sanjay Gummalla as its new vice president of regulatory and technical affairs. His primary role is to help frozen food and beverage producers and distributors influence the development, understand and comply with US domestic and international food quality, safety, labeling and production standards and requirements.
Dr. Gummalla, who will join AFFI on March 2, previously served as vice president of product development for Zentis North America, and has also held senior positions at Givaudan Inc. and Cargill Flavor Systems. He holds a Ph.D in Nutrition and Food Sciences from Utah State University, and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture from Andhra Pradesh Agricultural University in India.
In addition, AFFI has promoted Rishi Banerjee to the position of director of regulatory and technical affairs. He joined the Institute in April of 2013, and has been serving as manager of regulatory and technical affairs. Before coming to AFFI, the University of Maryland graduate worked at the US Department of Agriculture Environmental Microbial Food Safety Lab.
Both Dr. Gummalla and Banerjee report to Dr. Donna Garren, AFFI’s senior vice president of regulatory and technical affairs.
Lots on Agenda in Anaheim
Meanwhile, the Institute’s annual meeting and keynote breakfast is schedule for February 23, 7:30-9 AM, at the Hilton Anaheim convention hotel. It will be followed by the Frozen Food Foundation’s board of directors meeting from 9:30-11 AM.
AFFI’s Retail and Foodservice Committee meeting is set for 11 AM until noon, at which time a special presentation on boosting frozen food sales will be featured. Other events slated for February 23 include the Joint AFFI Scientific Advisory Committee and Microbiology Subcommittee meeting from 12:30-2 PM, and the Frozen Potato Products Institute’s board of directors meeting from 3-4:30 PM.
On Tuesday, the 24th, the Joint AFFI Fruit & Vegetable Committee and International Trade Committee meeting will be held from 7:30-9:30 AM, and on the 25th AFFI’s Executive Committee will convene from 8:30-10:30 AM.
International buying missions have been scheduled for the first three days of the convention. In addition, a trade exhibition featuring goods and services from suppliers to the industry will run from Saturday through Monday. Among exhibitors are TOMRA Sorting Solutions, Key Technology, RefrigiWear, IQF Frost, Hanson Logistics, Interstate Cold Storage, Lineage Logistics, and Tippmann Group/Interstate Warehousing.
AFFI advocates on behalf of the frozen food business and its more than 500 members that make, distribute and market frozen foods and beverages valued at $70 billion annually. More details about the Anaheim convention are available by visiting the McLean, Virginia-headquartered trade association’s website: www.affi.org.