BlueNalu appoints former Starbucks, Mars senior executive to board

Published on
January 10, 2022
Mary K. Wagner, a new appointee to BlueNalu's board of directors

San Diego, California, U.S.A.-based cell-cultured seafood start-up BlueNalu has gained its first independent board member with the appointment of Mary K. Wagner as independent director.

Wagner is a former senior executive at Starbucks, Mars, Gallo Winery, Yum! Brands and General Mills, and is a past president of the Institute of Food Technologists, with specializations in food innovation, quality assurance, and regulatory affairs.

"The diversity and depth of Mary’s experiences in the food industry, and the breadth of her corporate governance experiences on the boards of both public and private food companies, make her an outstanding candidate for our board of directors, and we are excited that she will join us as our first independent board member,” BlueNalu Co-Founder, President, and CEO Lou Cooperhouse said.

Her experience will aid the company as it pursues aggressive growth plans for its cell-cultured seafood, Cooperhouse said. Her appointment marks the fourth member on the board, which includes Cooperhouse, New Crop Capital Chief Investment Officer Chris Kerr, and Stray Dog Capital Chairperson Chuck Laue.

Wagner is currently on the board of Griffith Foods, Premium Brands Holdings, and Jones Dairy. She is also the chair of the food safety advisory board for Ecolab.

“I’ve spent my entire career on the forefront of product innovation, and I’m eager to apply my expertise at BlueNalu, where there is an extraordinary potential impact to help our environment and feed our planet in the decades ahead,” Wagner said. “BlueNalu has the right team, the right technology, at the right time that can transform seafood, and result in a global, trusted brand for sustainable, delicious, and healthy cell-cultured seafood. I’m thrilled to be a part of an organization that’s pioneering this exciting new food technology.”

Wagner was also previously appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to serve a co-chair of the USDA National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Board.

BlueNalu has received significant investments from Thai Union and Rich Products, and recently appointed Lauren Madden to serve as the company’s chief technology officer.     

Photo courtesy of BlueNalu

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