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Bell Hosts Gala Event in Chicago Showcasing Food Industry Trends and Live Cooking Competition

Bell Flavors & Fragrances Hosts Gala Event in Chicago Showcasing Food Industry Trends and Live Cooking Competition

 

Annual Spark Ignites Event Debuts 2024 Edition of Bell’s Spark Trends Platform and Chef Fusion Challenge to 200+ VIP Guests During Inspired Food Industry Event at The Hatchery

NORTHBROOK, Illinois – May 23, 2024 – The most talked about food industry event of the year is a wrap! Bell Flavors & Fragrances, Inc. (Bell) thanks more than 200+ invited guests from the food and beverage business for attending the 2024 edition of their Spark Ignites event on Friday, May 17, at The Hatchery in Chicago.

This year, the annual invite-only event not only showcased the latest consumer trends and flavor predictions from Bell’s Spark Trends platform, but also reinvigorated the company’s live, “Chopped-style” cooking competition, Chef Fusion Challenge, featuring four chef teams hailing from leading food industry brands.

“All the stars aligned for Spark Ignites 2024 with the Hatchery as the perfect location. We loved the opportunity to serve guests our unique flavor creations based on this year’s Spark Trends. And bringing back the Chef Fusion competition for the first time since 2019 in front of a live audience was the icing on the cake,” said Vice President of Marketing & Industry Affairs, Kelli Heinz.


Bringing Bell’s 2024 Spark Flavor Trends
to Life at The Hatchery

 

Known as the top incubator for startups in the Chicagoland food industry, The Hatchery provided the perfect backdrop for bringing trend predictions from Bell’s 2024 Spark Trends Program to life. The gala event greeted guests with a Spark showcase room, replete with opportunities to learn more about the current global Macro Trends identified by the trend platform as well as opportunities to experience (meaning taste) the company’s impactful flavor predictions.

“Every year, our Spark Trends Platforms identifies the food industry trends that are inspiring consumers across the globe. In the process, our Culinary Applications teams also explore regions and cuisines that will be having a strong impact on what’s coming to the table for years to come. With that said, it was a powerful experience to see these flavor explorations showcased as food and beverage demos right here at Spark Ignites 2024. At the end of the day, the proof is in the flavors, and our teams went above and beyond in giving our guests a taste to remember.” – David Banks, Senior Director of Marketing

For more information on Spark Ignites 2024, download the brochure here.

Attendees of Spark Ignites 2024 were given the opportunity to engage in tastings at five tables, each inspired by one of Bell’s five global consumer Macro Trends as part of their Spark–Ignites Creativity, Inspires Senses® Platform. Bell’s Culinary Applications teams across Savory, Sweet, and Beverage categories translated the company’s culinary trend predictions into inspired taste experiences, with highlights including:


Four Teams, One Winner –
The Chef Fusion Challenge Returns

 

Working in the Hatchery’s industry-size kitchen, in full view of Spark Ignites guests, the four chef teams were given one hour to whip up culinary creations based on Bell’s Spark Trends platform and using flavors as well as technologies from Bell’s Spark collection. Each team was tasked with creating three items; one beverage, one savory dish, and one sweet item while matching a common theme to win the grand prize.

“For the first time since 2019, Spark Ignites 2024 marked the return of Bell’s live cooking competition, the Chef Fusion Challenge. This year, the live event featured four chef teams representing the following top food industry brands: Blount Fine Foods, Reed Food Technology, Fuchs North America, and Griffith Foods. Attendees not only loved watching these culinary powerhouses heat up the kitchen, but also the opportunity to taste creative creations that brought our Spark Trends to life alongside those developed by our rockstar Bell team,” states Casey Schallert, Senior Corporate Chef.

Each of the four teams cooked up plenty of samples for all invited guests to taste and choose their favorites. An important step, because winners were chosen at the end of the cooking competition by all guests in live attendance via an online voting app. Aiding in the decision, a panel of seven hand-picked expert chefs – all certified members of The James Beard House and Research Chefs Association – provided color commentary and personal opinions as teams showcased their creations.

When the smoke cleared, the winner of the evening was Reed Food Technology. In a showcase that truly wowed all guests (and judges), the team brought to life a unique menu focused on Southern comforts with an unexpected twist. Dishes such as Donut Bread Pudding and Sweet Tea Brined Pulled Pork Wonton paired with Kool-Aid Pickle Margarita helped the team clinch first place. As a reward, each team member took home a premium KITCHENAID Pro 600 Stand Mixer.

In second place, the chef team from Fuchs North America cooked up three inspired menu items. Dishes such as The Deviled Egg and Matzo Ball Soup, paired with a Toasted Tea Spritzer helped the team clinch second place. As their prize, the chefs received an OONI Karu 12 Pizza Oven to ‘spark’ up their backyard cooking sessions.

Taking third place, the chef team from Griffith Foods brought their inspiration to the table via two versions of Windy City Ice Cream and Chi-takoyaki paired with “Not Malort.” This inspired showcase earned the team MARCATO Atlas 150 Pasta Machines for their Italian flavor explorations at home.

And last but not least, the team from Blount Fine Foods raised the bar by serving up Sweet Strawberry Entremet and Japanese Inspired Scallop Crudo, paired with a Sherbet Sunrise beverage. As a reward, each member took home a THERMOWORKS ONE Thermapen to keep their food temperature on point in the most heated kitchen moments.

Speaking of kitchen moments, Spark Ignites 2024 provided an unforgettable time for Bell’s guests to mingle and network with fellow food industry professionals.  The Bell team is taking home lots of inspiration from the night at The Hatchery and looks forward to serving its customers the flavors and technologies they need to delight consumers this year – and for years to come.

“This year’s event once again brought our Bell’s Spark Trends to life in a festive and inspiring atmosphere. Our Culinary Applications teams did a fantastic job in translating our Spark Macro Trends and Flavor Explorations into delicious dishes and beverages that really resonated with our guests. Plus, having the Chef Fusion Challenge back as a live event took this special evening over the top. A sincere thank you goes out to everyone who attended and made this event possible!” – Kelli Heinz, Vice President of Marketing & Industry Affairs

To learn more about our 2024 Spark Trends and connect with us to schedule a presentation that brings these trends to life, connect by sending an email to spark@bellff.com

About Bell Flavors & Fragrances:

Bell Flavors & Fragrances, Inc. is a leading supplier of flavors, fragrances, botanical extracts and ingredient specialties to the food and beverage industry, as well as the household care and personal care industries, offering over 110 years of exceptional customer service and experience. Bell has 11 manufacturing plants worldwide including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Germany, India, Singapore, and China, with sales offices in more than 90 countries. Bell’s global presence allows flexibility in the world marketplace while constantly responding to emerging industry trends with solutions that bring added value and business opportunities to our customers. www.bellff.com

Bell Flavors & Fragrances – Get in touch with taste.®

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Bell Welcomes New Chief Financial Officer and Activates Key Appointments at U.S. Headquarter

Bell Flavors & Fragrances Welcomes New Chief Financial Officer and Activates Key Appointments at U.S. Headquarter

 

Global Flavors and Fragrance Company Poised for Strategic Growth and Business Development

NORTHBROOK, Illinois – September 19, 2023

Bell Flavors & Fragrances, Inc. (Bell) is proud to announce its new Chief Financial Officer, Allan Kaplan, as well as strategic promotions within the company’s Finance and IT departments and Culinary and Flavor division at its headquarter in Northbrook, IL.

“This promotion is an exciting testament to Allan’s perseverance and hard work throughout his career.  Allan has shown tremendous unwavering dedication to his team, and his colleagues, friends and family are excited to see him take on this new challenge. He shows that he cares about his team by continuously investing his time and energy in positive, professional relationships. I congratulate Allan on his promotion to CFO and wish him continued success,” exclaimed Ron Stark, President & CEO.

Allan M. Kaplan has been promoted to Chief Financial Officer at Bell’s headquarter in Northbrook, IL. In his 10+ years with Bell, Allan has assumed positions of increased responsibilities, most recently serving as the Vice President of Finance. In his new role, he will oversee Bell’s Finance and Accounting departments, ensuring adherence to corporate accounting policies and procedures, and serve as a member of the Company’s Executive Management Committee.

Allan has played an integral leadership role during Bell’s domestic and international ERP implementations and has developed strong relationships across the globe in order to understand our business operations and endeavors in each country.

Allan earned his Bachelor of Science degree in accountancy from DePaul University and is a Certified Public Accountant.

“I see the CFO as picture painter. By utilizing ever-changing financial data, the role of the CFO is to understand the drivers behind the company’s financial information and present that data in a clear, precise format. Doing so correctly provides the Executive Management Team with the information necessary to guide the company toward achieving its strategic corporate goals” states Allan M. Kaplan, Chief Financial Officer.

Cristalle Keane takes on the position of Vice President, Sweet & Dairy; Flavor Creation & Application at Bell’s headquarter in Northbrook, IL. In this new role, she will continue to lead the Flavorist team and drive business development and innovation in sweet and dairy flavor applications.

Cristalle has worked at Bell for 23 years and has been essential in inspiring Bell’s Flavorists to be best in class for creativity as well as ingredient replacers and extenders, and establishing a sound analytical and sensory driven duplication process.

Cristalle earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Elmhurst University and is a Certified Flavorist.

Chris Warsow has been promoted to Vice President, Savory & Culinary; Flavor Creation, Application & Delivery Systems at Bell’s headquarter in Northbrook, IL. In his new role, Chris will develop strategies for continued growth within Bell’s savory, culinary and delivery systems platforms.

Chris has worked at Bell for over 15 years, most recently serving as the Director of Culinary Application, Savory Flavor Development and Delivery Systems, and has been instrumental in launching Bell’s Technology and Innovation Center.

Chris holds a dual Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degree in food science from Michigan State. He is also an Executive Corporate Chef and member of the Research Chefs Association.

Mauro Batisteza assumes the role of Vice President, International Finance at Bell’s headquarter in Northbrook, IL. In his position, Mauro will partner closely with Bell’s international leaders to support business growth across its 60+ global locations.

Prior to joining Bell, he gained expertise in corporate FP&A, global treasury, strategic planning and mergers and acquisitions, and served as Chief Financial Officer of the Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific regions.

Mauro holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Buenos Aires and a master’s degree in finance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Mike Barron has been promoted to Vice President, Information Technology at Bell’s headquarter in Northbrook, IL, leading all aspects of Bell’s corporate information systems and technology programs.

Mike most recently held the role of Senior Director, Information Technology and has been deeply involved in strategic planning to ensure effective IT operations worldwide.

Mike earned his bachelor’s degree from Illinois State University, majoring in business administration with an emphasis in management information systems and holding a minor in accounting. He also possesses a Six Sigma Master Black Belt and is a Certified Scrum Master.

“I congratulate Mike on his well-earned promotion. His courage and dedication to creating change management culture has impacted Bell greatly. I know our company will do wonderful things under his IT leadership and I can’t wait to see Bell’s limitless future,” said Ron Stark, President & CEO.

Please join Bell Flavors & Fragrances in celebrating these significant career achievements as they deepen the company’s expertise and strategic mindset, and further propel Bell’s commitment to efficiency, quality and excellence for global customers.

About Bell Flavors & Fragrances:

Bell Flavors & Fragrances, Inc. is a leading supplier of flavors, fragrances, botanical extracts and ingredient specialties to the food and beverage industry, as well as the household care and personal care industries, offering over 100 years of exceptional customer service and experience. Bell has 11 manufacturing plants including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Germany, India, Singapore, and China, with over 90 operating sales offices worldwide. Bell’s global presence allows flexibility in the world marketplace while constantly responding to emerging industry trends with solutions that bring added value and business opportunities to our customers. www.bellff.com

Bell Flavors & Fragrances – The Key Ingredient of Your Brand.

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Flavor Sales, Culinary & Beverage Applications Teams Acquire New Talent at Bell Flavors & Fragrances’ Northbrook Headquarter

Flavor Sales, Culinary & Beverage Applications Teams Acquire New Talent at Bell Flavors & Fragrances’ Northbrook Headquarter

 

Global Flavors and Fragrance Company Reinforces Innovation and Business Development with New Hires

NORTHBROOK, Illinois – June 26, 2023

Bell Flavors & Fragrances, Inc. (Bell) is pleased to announce three new hires who recently joined the company’s Flavor Sales and Culinary and Beverage Applications teams.

Jeremy Egle joins Bell as the Southwest National Account Manager – Flavor Sales based out of Denver, CO. In this role, Jeremy will manage a diverse portfolio of accounts and expand Bell’s pipeline throughout the Southwest territory.

Jeremy commands years of sales experience where he’s managed North American customer relationships and spearheaded global account growth. He also commands over 15 years of experience in the food and beverage industry working for multiple consumer packaged goods companies.

Jeremy earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University at Albany. He then went on to earn a second bachelor’s degree in culinary nutrition in addition to an Associate of Science degree in culinary arts from Johnson & Wales University.

Senior Vice President & Commercial General Manger of Bell’s Flavor Division, Joan Harvey, notes, “We are thrilled to have someone of Jeremy’s caliber join our team. With his wealth of experience in sales, we know he’ll make an immediate impact at Bell Flavor & Fragrances.”

Jared Goldstein joins Bell’s Culinary Applications Team as a Culinary Technologist. In this new role, he will work cross-functionally to create remarkable customer experiences that showcase Bell’s flavors and technologies in savory applications.

Jared worked as a Chef De Partie at an award-winning restaurant group in Chicago where he gained experience with plant-based applications and worked alongside Chef Grant Achatz to create a pop-up restaurant with a multi-sensory menu.

Jared earned his associate degree in culinary arts and a bachelor’s degree in culinary science from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. Following his college education, Jared completed his internship at a global spice and flavor company in Hunt Valley, MD.

“Our organization values professionalism and a customer-centric approach, which aligns perfectly with Jared’s background. We believe his skills and insights will greatly contribute to our continued success,” said Joan Harvey, Senior Vice President & Commercial General Manger of Bell’s Flavor Division.

Justin Kozlowski joins Bell as a Vice President of Beverage, Flavor Creation & Application. In this role, Justin will be responsible for all beverage development, technology and innovation.

Justin brings a 20-year career in the flavor and beverage industry. He’s a certified flavorist and Society of Flavor Chemists board member. In past work experiences, he’s lead Analytical, Operations and Flavor Teams, and most recently served as a commercialization leader for flavor and beverage launches.

Justin earned his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from DePaul University, master’s degree in food science from the University of Illinois and Master of Business Administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

Senior Vice President & Commercial General Manger of Bell’s Flavor Division, Joan Harvey, exclaims, “We are excited to bring Jeremy’s talent our team, as his experience and expertise in the flavor and beverage industry provides immense value to our organization.”

Please join Bell Flavors & Fragrances in congratulating Jeremy, Jared and Justin as they strengthen our commitment to delivering excellent service and care to our U.S. customers.

About Bell Flavors & Fragrances:

Bell Flavors & Fragrances, Inc. is a leading supplier of flavors, fragrances, botanical extracts and ingredient specialties to the food and beverage industry, as well as the household care and personal care industries, offering over 100 years of exceptional customer service and experience. Bell has 11 manufacturing plants worldwide including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Germany, India, Singapore, and China, with sales offices in more than 60 countries. Bell’s global presence allows flexibility in the world marketplace while constantly responding to emerging industry trends with solutions that bring added value and business opportunities to our customers. www.bellff.com

Bell Flavors & Fragrances – The Key Ingredient of Your Brand.