Congratulations to West Liberty Foods, our 2022 Frozen Foods Processor of the Year. 

Founded in 1996, when 47 farmers formed the Iowa Turkey Growers Co-Operative to purchase a turkey processing plant in West Liberty, Iowa, from Kraft Foods. In over two decades, West Liberty has grown to four facilities in three states, with a fifth location planned for construction in 2023. Read more in our cover story

Other highlights in this issue include a look at what makes Atlanta a “hot” city for cold storage and the latest technology and trends impacting food and beverage pallets. Our C-Suite Q&A this issue features Carrie-Ann Flank, vice president of sales at Thermo King.

Brian King, of A M King, writes about real estate strategies to consider before building a cold facility and our departments focus on new retail plant-based foods and beverages, lubricants and refrigerant technology and in packaging: shrink sleeve, vacuum packaging and flow-wrapping equipment.

Apollo Nguyen, interim CEO of Van’s KitchenApollo Nguyen, interim CEO of Van’s Kitchen, accepts the company’s award for being named R&FF’s 2022 Refrigerated Foods Processor of the Year after addressing the FA&M Symposium.


As the trade show and convention season winds down, I’d like to thank my colleagues at FOOD ENGINEERING for inviting me to emcee the Food Automation & Manufacturing Symposium and Expo, in September. 

Held in Miami, Florida, FA&M featured world-class speakers presenting leading-edge solutions in the key aspects of food and beverage manufacturing, including engineering, automation, sustainability, supply chain and food safety. The FA&M annual symposium is where the industry’s key stakeholders benefit from attending to gain insights from some of the top leaders at the manufacturing and supplier level. This two-and-a-half-day event opens with a golf tournament, and is followed by a one-day expo, and is packed with educational sessions throughout this intimate networking event.

panel on “Operating Strategies from Outside the Food Manufacturing Industry” Kelley Rodriguez, editor in chief of R&FF (left), moderates a panel on “Operating Strategies from Outside the Food Manufacturing Industry” with Dan Stauft, director of Operational Technology at SugarCreek, Ayeshah Abuelhiga, founder & CEO, Mason Dixie Foods, Christie Lagally, founder & CEO, Rebellyous Foods.


It was great to connect with and learn from some of the best and brightest in the food industry. I was honored to emcee, interview, and meet so many attendees. I highly encourage you to consider attending next year!

As always, thank you for reading.