Westrock Coffee Company expands team with two industry veterans

Nov. 4, 2022
Nicolas Lorenz will join senior leadership as executive vice president, manufacturing; Cedric Smith will join state-of-the-art Conway, Arkansas, facility as plant manager.

Westrock Coffee Company announced the expansion of its team with the appointment of two key industry veterans. Nicolas Lorenz will join Westrock Coffee as executive vice president - manufacturing and will be based in Little Rock, Arkansas. Cedric Smith joins the team as vice president and plant manager for the flavors, extracts and ingredients facility in Conway, Arkansas.

Each brings more than 25 years of experience in the food and beverage category to Westrock Coffee and will play a pivotal role in expanding the company’s manufacturing capabilities.

“As Westrock Coffee continues to serve some of the most recognizable brands in the world, I am excited to welcome both Nicolas and Cedric to our team,” Will Ford, group president – operations, said in the announcement. “The collective expertise and knowledge each brings to Westrock Coffee will serve us well as we continue to expand our manufacturing facilities to serve growing customer demand.”

Lorenz will be responsible for the manufacture of all products distributed from the company’s global enterprise to its blue-chip customers. Lorenz joins the company from PACCOR Packaging Solutions, one of the largest packaging facilities globally, based in Düsseldorf, Germany, where he served as chief commercial officer (COO) and as vice president, sales, and managing director, Northern Europe. In previous roles, Lorenz has been COO of Shalina Healthcare DMCC in Dubai and served customers in the sub-Saharan Africa region. Lorenz also served as general manager for Ditra, Scitra and Abiat Oleo Industries in Sharjah, UAE, the largest contract manufacturer in the Middle East, as sales director for Budelpack International B.V. in Bergen op Zoom, Netherlands, and business development director for SCA Packaging Middle Europe in Nuremberg Germany.

“I am honored to join Westrock Coffee at such a pivotal time,” Lorenz said in the announcement. “As a new public company in the United States, and as a leader in its industry, Westrock Coffee is paving the way for ethically sourced and transparent beverage solutions, and I look forward to working with the entire team to fulfill the needs of its diverse customer base.”

Smith will oversee the start-up, build-out and operation of the company’s new state-of-the-art facility in Conway, Arkansas, which will produce cans, glass and plastic bottles, and bag-in-box solutions. Smith joins Westrock Coffee from Dairy Farmers of America (DFA), where he was the assistant plant manager for one of DFA’s top volume-producing ready-to-drink (RTD) facilities in Springfield, Missouri. In previous positions, Smith worked with Dawn Foods Products Inc., Nestle USA, Prepared Foods, and Eagle Family Foods, Inc.

“I’m thrilled to join Westrock Coffee and become an integral part of the Conway business community,” Smith said in the announcement. “Leading the largest roasting to ready-to-drink facility in the U.S. is both an honor and an enormous opportunity. Westrock Coffee is leading the industry in innovative products and solutions, and I couldn't be more excited to help manage the growth of the facility and see the positive impact it will have for our customers.”


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