Freshpet announces that Jay Dahlgren has been named executive vice president of Manufacturing, Technology and Supply Chain, effective Jan. 1, 2023. Jay brings over 30 years of pet food manufacturing, supply chain and quality experience to the company from positions at the J.M. Smucker Company, Del Monte Foods, Meow Mix and Nestle Purina.
This new appointment further supports Freshpet’s operational improvement plan to drive margin expansion, support long-term growth and improve profitability. The plan was developed by Freshpet’s leadership team in concert with its board in August of 2022 and contains a roadmap to add manufacturing and supply chain expertise along with a strategy to improve quality, efficiency and add capacity. Over the last six months, these changes have positioned Freshpet to improve productivity and profitability beginning in 2023 and grow into its manufacturing network to support robust consumer demand.
“Our team has made significant progress over the past quarter, improving fill rates into the 90’s and lowering logistics and disposal costs to healthier levels, which positions us for further improvement in 2023. The addition of Jay to our management team–with his proven execution and deep expertise in manufacturing, supply chain and operations–will further strengthen Freshpet, improve our operations, and support our plan to drive margin enhancement,” said Billy Cyr, chief executive officer of Freshpet.
As part of its plan to grow capacity, Freshpet has made strong progress starting up its new Freshpet Kitchen in Ennis, Texas, and is now successfully producing and shipping from that facility rolls SKU’s accounting for more than 90% of its line-up. The Ennis Kitchen will eventually be Freshpet’s largest and most profitable manufacturing facility as scale and throughput improves.
Dahlgren brings over 30 years of product supply leadership experience, with extensive knowledge in operations management including manufacturing, distribution, production planning, procurement and logistics. Previously, he was vice president of operations at the J.M. Smucker Company and has had a long track record of operations success with Nestle Purina, Del Monte Foods, Big Heart and Meow Mix before his time at J.M. Smucker. Prior to joining Freshpet in this permanent position as the leader of Freshpet’s entire manufacturing and supply chain organization, he served the company as a consultant for much of the past year.