SPRINGDALE, Ark. – Tyson Fresh Meats, a unit of Tyson Foods, formed a new Portioned Protein Innovations (PPI) team tasked specifically with developing solutions and product innovations for its value-added and case-ready meats customers.

The PPI team assembled by Tyson Fresh Meats consists of sales and operations employees across the United States. The team has decades of experience in further-processed items for both retail and foodservice segments, including packaging solutions, ground beef production, protein portioning and seasoned and marinated products. Nate Hodne, senior vice president of PPI, will lead the team which is comprised of several departments:

  • Innovation & Growth Business led by Ryan Vessell
  • Operations led by Mark Gordon
  • Value Added led by Kevin Younger
  • Case Ready led by Jason Robertson
  • Shared Services Support led by John McKeone, Jeff Lickfelt and Mark King

Tyson Fresh Meats has seen steady growth in the value-added and case-ready categories and is uniquely positioned to help its customers meet growing consumer demand for function and convenience. The company has multiple facilities producing portioned proteins — including three case-ready facilities in Sherman, Texas, Goodlettsville, Tennessee, and Council Bluffs, Iowa; two portion-cutting facilities in Chicago and Jacksonville, Florida; and a value-added plant in Emporia, Kansas. An additional case-ready plant is planned for Salt Lake City and is set to open in 2021.

“We’re thrilled to announce our Portioned Protein Innovations Team,” Hodne said. “The experts on this team have years of industry knowledge and experience to bring to our customers and now, with this new team, we have the capability to focus on this growing consumer demand. We are excited about the top-notch customer service and the many innovative solutions that will come from the PPI team.”