Face-to-Face: Meet Randal Kreienbrink March 2016

Ever wonder if anyone else is facing the same professional challenges as you? Or just looking to connect with some new people in your field? In IFT's Face-to-Face series, we will be introducing you to a different IFT member every month with a fun, insightful Q&A session.


Randal KreienbrinkThis month meet...

Randal Kreienbrink, CFS, Vice President of Marketing, BI Nutraceuticals

  1. How did you get your start in the food science world?
    I have been a foodie and a scientist since I was little. I loved growing vegetables and then helping my mother preserve them. My favorites were strawberry freezer jam (mostly used in ice cream) and crock barrel pickles. I had two directions I could have gone after graduating from the University of Wisconsin: biotechnology & fermentation or food science. Food science won by a landslide and now I have more than 30 fun-filled years in the food ingredient industry with sales, marketing, technology & quality assurance, and research & development as my areas of expertise.

    My first position in the food industry, and in many ways my most impressionistic job, was as an analytical food chemist at Denny’s Inc., food division (Winchell’s) in La Mirada, Calif. My first boss, Stephany Rosenthal—who is still a dear friend today—inspired me to make this my life career. I would not trade my food science career for any other industry or profession, even after 30 years of experience.

  2. What do you love about your job?
    As a vice president of marketing, I love the challenges of clearly, scientifically, and safely developing ingredients for not only our current global population but the future 9.2 billion living souls that will be on this planet by the year 2050. The food ingredient industry is always moving forward with several exciting trends, advancing technologies, and most challenging—creating nutritious, clean label, good-for-you foods that also taste good.

  3. What is the biggest challenge that you face in your job?
    I always need to be in front of the latest trends and ingredients. However, what the general public thinks and what they want is not always what they should have; it may not be actually safe or nutritionally sound for a human diet. My job is to translate trends into viable, tasty, safe, and nutritious foods.

  4. What have you learned or been exposed to in the past 12 months that has helped you in your job?
    I have been in the Industry more than 30 years and I have learned a lot over those years of on-the-job real time experience. In the last year, I feel old lessons are back in the forefront—food safety first, transparency, true food science, and integrity always win out over greed and short cuts.

  5. How do you see the food industry evolving over the coming year?
    Cleaner label products continue with increased plant-based protein foods as well as decreased sugar and salts in foods. Smart phone technology is also aiding us in our eating habits. As Hippocrates, father of medicine, said: “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”

  6. Fun Fact: What’s your favorite food?
    So many favorites: Anything that my spouse, who grew up in Louisiana, cooks for my family (southern comfort foods), pizza, yellowtail sushi, Moose Tracks ice cream.

If you are an IFT member and wish to be profiled, please contact Kelly Hensel at khensel@ift.org or 312-604-0211.