Refrigerated and frozen soup and seafood processorBlount Fine Foods, Fall River, Mass., said it promotedRobert Sewallto executive vice president of sales and marketing; andWilliam Bigelowto vice president of business development.

Sewall previously was vice president of sales and marketing, and Bigelow formerly was director of research and development. Officials said both "come as the company moves ahead with aggressive growth plans that include a near-doubling of production capacity in its Fall River headquarters and expansion into new markets, product lines and distribution channels."

“Bob Sewall is a go-to guy with unsurpassed respect across our industry who has been integral to Blount’s success and growth over the last 15 years, a period that is unmatched in our 130 year history as a company,” said Todd Blount, president. “Bob has led the growth of Blount’s gourmet refrigerated and frozen soup markets with an average compound annual growth rate of 20 percent, which has brought us to a position of market leadership today. In his new, expanded role, for which he is perfectly suited, I look for Bob to help take this company even higher.”

Regarded as the “consummate partner” to his customers, Sewall’s most recent success came in leading the development and launch of the company’s new gourmet dip and spread line under the Blount, Panera Bread and Legal Sea Foods brands. In his new position, officials said Sewall will expand and accelerate the launching of new product lines and will be working to bring Blount into additional product categories that further serve the retail, wholesale club and food service channels. He will also be charged with exploring and managing acquisition opportunities for the company.

As vice president of business development, Bigelow, who has been the key driver in building Blount’s best-in-class product development engine over the last eight years, will now lead and manage the growing needs of product and program management within the retail sector and collaborate with Blount’s operations team to elevate forecasting and product development.

“I am challenging William to further sharpen Blount’s already effective business development team to advance us at retail,” commented Blount. “His first order of business will be to identify and recruit a new director of R&D from outside Blount who can bring diverse new perspective and capabilities to our team.”