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Originally planned to take place March 27 in Arizona, the PLMA annual meeting had been rescheduled as a virtual meeting on June 29 due to precautions in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Clay Dockery of Massimo Zanetti Beverage USA elected chairman of PLMA board of directors

Annual PLMA meeting, held online, included tribute to late association president Brian Sharoff

Clay Dockery, vice president corporate brands, Massimo Zanetti Beverage USA, was elected as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the New York-based Private Label Manufacturers Association.

The election took place Monday, during the association’s Annual Meeting for 2020. The meeting was held online and was open to all PLMA member companies. Originally planned to take place March 27 in Arizona, the meeting had been rescheduled due to precautions in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

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“I am deeply honored by your confidence and support. It is the greatest privilege to stand today as your Chairman, and to be entrusted to serve this organization and the store brands industry,” said Dockery (left) during his address. “This is especially meaningful coming as it does during these unusual times for the association and the industry as a whole.”

He continued, “It is true that over the past few months, events we never imagined we would see in our lifetimes have brought unprecedented challenges. I believe it is equally true that many of us here in the U.S. are eager to show our customers that we’ll be coming back from these challenges stronger than ever. And as we find ways to make our industry better than ever in a new normal – whatever that will turn out to be — I have no doubt whatsoever that we can prove to our customers and ourselves that life indeed is good in private label.”

Dockery identified various ways the private label industry is responding to new challenges in sourcing, packaging and production of retail brand products for the wide range of purchasing options that consumers expect — including in-store, e-commerce, home delivery or click-and-collect.

He noted that private label represents the single largest brand in virtually every retailer in the country, with $136 billion in sales annually across all outlets combined, according to Nielsen’s latest data. “Moreover, in category after category, it’s commonplace to find the retailer’s brands ranking as the number one or two brand,” Dockery said. “Our industry accounts for nearly one in four products sold and one of every five dollars spent by shoppers in a supermarket, mass merchandiser or drug chain.”

PLMA’s outgoing chairwoman, Lisa Manzoline of Reynolds Consumer Products, opened the meeting with welcome remarks and a tribute to longtime PLMA president Brian Sharoff, who passed away in May. She then introduced Peggy Davies, who directed the rest of the meeting as acting president of PLMA. Manzoline continues to serve ex-officio as a member of the board.

In other announcements during the meeting, John Schaefer, vice president, sales, Aspen Products Inc. was elected First Vice Chairman, and Doug Bausch, vice president sales and marketing, LNK International Inc., was elected to the Second Vice Chairman post.

Five individuals were elected to the Board for three-year terms from 2020-2023. They are: Dean Erstad, Seneca Foods Corp.; Ashley Quaintance, TreeHouse Foods; Tim Marvin, Mizkan Americas Inc.; Chris Anderson, Edgewell Personal Care; and Matt Carrol, U.S. Nonwovens Corp. Elected to fill a vacancy on the Board was Gil Wilson, T. Marzetti Company.

Continuing members of the PLMA Board of Directors include: Neil Sosa, ASO, LLC; Howard Kirschenbaum, Trinity Plastics; Lou DeMent, Giovanni Food Co.; Mark Coleman, Catania Spagna Corp.; Darin Ciavarella, Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate; Marc Robinson, Global Tissue Group; Kristal Sevcik, AmeriQual Group, LLC; Kelly McGolrich, Shearer’s Foods; and Mark Mayer, Hormel Foods.

Jerry McGill, Roehl Corp., continues to serve on the Board representing PLMA member brokers, while Maria Dubuc, Marketing By Design, represents PLMA member suppliers.

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