CONCORD, Mass., August 1, 2012 – Welch’s, the leading marketer of Concord and Niagara grape-based products, announces the appointment of Wayne D. Lutomski as Vice President, International, effective immediately. Lutomski joins Welch’s following three years as the Vice President of International Development of Just Born, Inc., the company best-known for MIKE & IKE® and PEEPS ®.
“Welch’s is a beloved American brand, with strong footholds in several international markets,” says Lutomski. “I am delighted to join Welch’s at this critical time of global developments, to help expand existing markets and build new ones.”
With a wealth of international food and beverage industry experience, Lutomski will aid Welch’s in fueling long-term global development of their iconic products. “We are enjoying positive trends in many global markets, despite challenging economic factors, and we’re thrilled to have Wayne on board to take us even further,” says Brad Irwin, Welch’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “We’re excited by the broad scope of his global experience.”
Previously, Lutomski spent eight years with Pepsi, launching SoBe in 35 countries and propelling the new Adrenaline Rush to become the market leader in several countries. He also built international markets for Gatorade, successfully driving Korea to become the largest non-U.S. market. In addition, Lutomski introduced the Snapple brand in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and the Philippines after beginning his career with E. & J. Gallo, the world’s largest winery.
Lutomski earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and international relations from Auburn University. He replaces Bill Hewins, who is retiring after 30 years of dedication to Welch’s.
Headquartered in Concord, Massachusetts, Welch’s is the processing and marketing subsidiary of the National Grape Cooperative. Welch’s is owned by more than 1,000 family-farmers across America and in Ontario, Canada, who make up this cooperative and who grow the delicious and inherently healthy Concord grape, used in Welch’s juices and other grape-based products. Welch’s is committed to research and development that will meet the growing demand for products that address consumers’ health and nutrition needs. Welch’s products are sold throughout the United States and in approximately 50 countries around the globe.