IBIE Announces New Committee Officers

Washington, D.C.— The IBIE 2016 Committee welcomed two new committee members at the spring strategic planning meeting in Orlando, FL this past weekend: Robert L. Benton of Flowers Foods, Inc. and Jorge Zárate of Grupo Bimbo. The IBIE Committee is comprised of volunteer members of the American Bakers Association (ABA) and BEMA, the Bakery Equipment Manufacturers and Allieds. Both Benton and Zárate represent ABA and were selected to represent a cross-section of the baking industry and ABA members on the committee.

“Robert and Jorge bring considerable strength to the IBIE Committee and fully recognize the importance of IBIE in fulfilling ABA’s mission to strengthen the baking industry,” said Robb Mackie, president of ABA.

As Flowers Foods’ senior vice president and chief manufacturing officer, Benton is responsible for the operations, productivity, and efficiency of more than 45 bakeries and oversees capital projects, including bakery start-ups and expansions. He also is responsible for regulatory/quality assurance and safety/environmental affairs. Benton has served in leadership roles with a number of industry groups, including the American Institute of Baking, BEMA and the American Society of Baking, where he served as chairman from 2008-2009.

“IBIE showcases the technological innovation that is moving our industry forward, and I’m honored to join the team that helps direct the focus of this important trade event,” said Benton of his nomination.

Jorge Zárate Lupercio, senior vice president of operations for Bimbo Mexico, will also bring a wealth of knowledge to the 2016 planning committee—particularly in attracting international markets to the 2016 Bakery Expo™. With nearly 30 years at Grupo Bimbo, Zárate has served in several roles—including president of Bimbo Asia in Beijing.

He majored in Biochemical Engineering at ITESM (Mexico), holds a postgraduate degree in Strategic Marketing at UCA (Argentina) and an MBA at EDDE (Argentina). He has also attended the AIB (USA) Baking Science & Technology course and the Advanced Management Program at IAE (Argentina).

"It’s an honor to take part in the event that has made such an impact to the industry over the past 30 years,” said Zárate. “The support from ABA and BEMA shows the commitment to the industry, helping it to develop, innovate and grow—as well as bring together the entire grain based foods industry.”

Along with new appointments, two members have resigned from the IBIE committee: former IBIE chairman Michael A. Beaty, who will retire from his role as executive vice president of supply chain at Flowers Foods in spring 2015, and Rosalio Rodriguez, executive vice president of Grupo Bimbo. Both men served as IBIE committee members for the 2007, 2010 and 2013 events. The IBIE Committee would like to thank them for their service.

The full IBIE committee is listed as follows: Michael Cornelis, Chairman, American Pan, A Bundy Baking Solution; Joseph Turano, Vice Chairman, Turano Baking Company; Dennis Gunnel, Secretary-Treasurer, Fuji Corporation; Chuck Wellard, Assistant Secretary-Treasurer, American Bakers Association; Howard R. Alton, III, Pan-O-Gold; Robert Benton, Flowers Foods, Inc.; Andrea Henderson, Rondo; Richard Hoskins, III, Colborne Foodbotics; Fred Springer, Burford Corp.; David Watson, Campbell Soup Company; and Jorge Zárate Lupercio, Grupo Bimbo S.A. de C.V.

For more information about IBIE 2016 and to see highlights from IBIE 2013, visit www.IBIE2016.com.


IBIE, sponsored by the American Bakers Association (ABA), the Baking Equipment Manufacturers and Allieds (BEMA) and the Retail Bakers of America (RBA), is recognized worldwide as the grain-based food industry’s largest, most comprehensive trade event. A “working show” where millions of dollars of business is conducted daily, IBIE brings the entire professional baking community together, offering the complete range of equipment, supply and ingredient solutions and showcasing the newest baking technology in 500,000 net square feet. The triennial event will next be held in Las Vegas, Nev. October 8-11, 2016.

Attendees include employees of: wholesale bakeries, suppliers and distributors; supermarket chains, central bakeries and commissaries; supermarket in-store bakeries; multi-store and single unit retail bakeries; intermediate wholesale bakeries; donut, pie and cookie retailers; cake and cupcake shops; foodservice operators; tortilla producers; snack food producers; biscuit & cracker producers.

Exhibitors include manufacturers and suppliers of: baking/food equipment and systems; ingredients, flavorings, spices & fillings; ingredient handling systems; packaging materials & systems; technology; sanitation equipment; transportation & distribution equipment; refrigeration equipment; business services.

Source: IBIE – International Baking Industry Exhibition