With nearly 200 years of experience and a reputation you can trust, Bunge is more than an ingredient manufacturer.

We are the Oil and Milling Experts.

Oil and Milling Experts Logos

Why is Bunge Oils known as “The Oil Experts?”

Bunge is the world’s largest oilseed processor and has been involved in agribusiness since 1818 and is consistently on the forefront of developing the latest in edible oils and shortenings. But what really makes Bunge the “Oil Experts” is our continued efforts towards eliminating trans fat, reducing saturated fat, improving menu and nutritional labeling while implementing sustainable solutions. We have the products, the technical expertise and the support tools to provide our customers with what they need to be successful.

Ken Hayes, Resident Bakery Expert

Ken Hayes
Resident Bakery Expert

Ken is the BIIC’s resident bakery expert. Growing up, Ken worked in his family’s bakery and has since spent over 30 years in the industry, working in the management and ownership side as well as production and technical side. Ken lends his extensive knowledge and bakery experience to the BIIC, helping Bunge customers with technical service and applications as they implement functional shortenings and oils from Bunge into their signature formulas.

Carrie Abrassart, Manager of Margarines and Spreads

Carrie Abrassart
Manager of Margarines and Spreads

Carrie is Bunge's technical leader of margarine and spread technology and leads an experienced team in bringing quality products to market. While her current focus is on Bunge’s margarines and spreads, Carrie also has over 15 years of expertise in development of high-stability frying oils and liquid butter alternatives. Carrie is a very well-rounded member of the BIIC R&D team and has been a leader of the sensory evaluation team.

Rey Cruz, Senior Project Leader

Rey Cruz
Senior Project Leader

With over 20 years of experience in Bunge R&D, Rey Cruz lends his expertise to a variety of oil-related projects. Rey is currently focused on Bunge’s margarine products, working with Bunge customers to create new and improved functional margarines and spreads. His competencies reach beyond the lab as Rey’s processing knowledge is also utilized to improve Bunge manufacturing facility efficiencies.

Bob Johnson
Director of R&D for Bunge Oils

As the Director of Research and Development for Bunge Oils, Bob Johnson is always looking forward, developing new products to meet Bunge customer current and future needs. Leading Bunge’s technical service and applications support team, Bob works one-on-one with Bunge customers to provide first-class assistance, training and functional aid. Bob and his team work closely with Bunge’s operations and supply chain teams to efficiently add new products, processes and technologies to Bunge’s expanding product portfolio.

Mel Pace, Oils Pilot Plant Supervisor

Mel Pace
Oils Pilot Plant Supervisor

As the Oils Pilot Plant Supervisor in BIIC, Mel Pace brings his experience in operations and quality assurance to the pilot plant scale to ensure that products are produced to high standards of quality and safety. Mel’s attention to detail keep Bunge at the top of the list for customer development requests and supports Bunge’s ability to meet and exceed customer expectations on a regular basis.

Howard Shuman
Director of Customer Solutions and Technical Service

Howard Shuman’s experience over his 25+ years of experience at Bunge Oils has included R&D, Technical Sales as well as QA. Howards leadership and position as an industry expert in frying help ensure that Bunge's technical support resources are utilized to meet or exceed customer expectations. His team has helped customers by troubleshooting within their facilities to solve complex issues and have helped to extend shelf-life and fry life through better handling of our oils. On an ongoing basis, Howard's team is helping our customers with hands-on formulation support to reduce trans and saturates from their products.

Zach Hovan, Corporate Chef

Zach Hovan
Corporate Chef

Chef Zach's experience in the culinary arts has allowed Bunge to increase its culinary expertise. Zach works alongside Bunge’s R&D team at the BIIC. His role at Bunge includes working with Bunge’s culinary team in customer kitchens and onboard M.O.E. Most recently, Zach helped to commission Bunge’s new BIIC Culinary Research Kitchen, opened in Bradley, Illinois in July 2012.

Neil Higgins
Research Fellow

With an academic background in plant pathology, Neil has utilized his working knowledge of chemistry and applied it to his role at Bunge working on processing and product innovations. Neil’s natural abilities to break down complex problems and look for pieces of the puzzle that fit together have greatly benefitted the innovations group as he supports their efforts in commercialization of saturate sparing technology and non-food industrial uses of vegetable oils.

Tiffanie West
Director of Analytical

As team director of Bunge’s Analytical Insights group, Tiffanie acts as an intermediary between the R&D, Quality Assurance and plant operations groups. Tiffanie can be found in the BIIC’s Analytical Lab where her team works on new chromatographic as well as rapid non-destructive analytical methodology. Some of the methodology has supported Bunge’s sustainability efforts by reducing the use of organic solvents in our laboratories. The Analytical team enables getting to the root of questions related to product quality in order to optimize Bunge customer satisfaction and plant efficiency.

Pam Teran, Sr. Project Leader

Pam Teran
Sr. Project Leader

Pam’s versatility as a product developer allows her to offer technical support and operational advice to finished food projects with a wide variety of customers. Pam works closely with our operations teams as well as our customers to ensure the products meet the expectations of both parties. Pam has technical expertise in formulation as well as application testing and sensory evaluation in the full range of products from foodservice frying to retail margarine to the trait enhanced oils.