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Calyxt Strengthens its Leadership Team to Support Commercial Growth Opportunities


Calyxt, Inc., a healthy food ingredients company, announced that the company is expanding its leadership team to support commercial growth opportunities.

This move includes the appointment of Keith Blanks to the newly created position of Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, effective Sept. 3. In his role, Mr. Blanks will be responsible for driving sales with a focus on growing the Company’s foodservice and food and pet food manufacturing customer bases.

With this addition, Manoj Sahoo will assume the role of Chief Business Development and Supply Chain Officer, focusing his efforts on the development of strategic collaborations across Calyxt platforms of wellness, plant-based proteins and sustainability. He will also continue to expand the Company’s grower network and supply chain. Previously, Mr. Sahoo fulfilled the role of Chief Commercial Officer with responsibilities for food customers, grower relations and supply chain management.

“This expansion focuses Calyxt on our food customers and builds this food sales team,” said Jim Blome, chief executive officer with Calyxt. “In order to do just that, we are bringing in a seasoned executive to steer our sales and go-to-market strategies, which in turn empowers Mr. Sahoo to focus on emerging opportunities for the company.”

Mr. Blanks brings a successful track record that includes high-profile leadership positions and recognized sales achievements in the food ingredient and agriculture industries. Throughout his tenured career, he has built a reputation of trust and developed go-to-market strategies to help incubate new products into mature revenue-generating engines.

“We’re excited for Keith to bring his practical experience and understanding of a diverse range of business management applications to Calyxt,” said Jim Blome, chief executive officer with Calyxt. “A tenacious sales leader with deep-rooted values in customer loyalty, Keith will play a pivotal role as we grow our customer base and make it easy to do business with Calyxt.”

Keith brings more than 25 years of commercial experience to Calyxt. Most recently with High Liner Foods, he served as General Manager and Vice President of the Aquaculture/Shrimp category after heading up National Accounts. He previously held executive positions throughout his 20-year career with Cargill, where he most recently led a National Accounts team representing eight foodservice and food manufacturing business units. He previously served on the Board of Trustees for the Washburn Center for Children and is a former chair with United Way.