GREELEY, COLO. – Bill Rupp was named president of the beef division of JBS USA on Oct. 4. Richard Vesta, who has led the company’s beef segment since his appointment in March 2009, is assisting with the transition and will continue working with the company on various special projects, according to Chandler Keys, spokesman for JBS USA.

Rupp stepped away from his role as CEO of Loveland, Colo.-based Meyer Natural Foods to assume the position with JBS. Rupp was hired by Meyer in February 2009, just over a year after stepping down as president of Wichita, Kan.-based Cargill Meat Solutions, where he worked in various capacities for more than 25 years

“Bill Rupp’s legacy with the industry speaks for itself,” Keys says. “He started from the ground up with Cargill,” he adds, pointing out that Rupp’s operations experience coupled with his sales background make him a good fit for the leadership role at JBS. “JBS is always looking for talent and finding the right kind of people to help run the company,” says Keys.

Vesta joined the company when JBS acquired the Smithfield Beef Group in 2009 and has led JBS Packerland since that transaction. “Rich was an integral part of the transition in putting together the US Beef Division for JBS with the integration of Packerland with the JBS legacy plants,” says Keys. “We’ll continue to use his expertise in the industry and he will work closely with Wesley (Batista, president and CEO of JBS USA) on projects and will be working with Bill on the transition.”