Monday, December 11, 2023

AOCS Corporate Member Spotlight: PepsiCo

PepsiCo Inc., an AOCS Corporate Member, is a company that focuses on providing a range of food and beverage products that bring a smile to consumer faces globally

In this spotlight, Rick Della Porta, Sr. Principal Scientist, discusses what separates PepsiCo from other providers as well as the the importance of having a corporate membership.

What type of products/services does your company provide?

PepsiCo’s range of foods and beverages reflects how varied consumer tastes are around the globe, from Canada’s beloved Lay’s Dill Pickle Flavored potato chips to SABRITONES, puffy chile and lime snacks made in Mexico. All designed to make you smile.  From classic Pepsi-Cola to Mountain Dew to Gatorade to Miranda and ready-to-drink Lipton Teas, the beverage choices are as diverse as the snacks.

What differentiates your company from companies in the same space?

PepsiCo has a “huge runway” to grow its multi-billion-dollar snacking empire, despite owning a portfolio that includes decades-old favorites such as Doritos, Fritos, and Cheetos among its best-selling offerings.  The company continues to “experiment and think about different” ingredients, packaging formats, flavors, and unique combinations — such as the merging of salty and sweet — to strengthen its already dominant presence in the snacking category.

What are some recent innovations your company is most proud of?

Rick Dellaporta Sr. Principal Scientist
Rick Della Porta
Sr. Principal Scientist
Developing a new technology to recover more than 50% of the water used in its potato chip manufacturing for sustainability.

New products include Quaker Chewy Granola, Marias Gamesa cereal, Cap'n Crunch Instant Oatmeal made with Quaker Oats, Cap'n Crunch Original Crunch Treats Cereal Bars, and Near East Heat & Eat Rice Pilaf and Long Grain & Wild Rice, the Gatorade Smart Gx Bottle, Mountain Dew Spark, and Doritos Dinamita Sticks Smoky Chile Queso.

What differentiates your company from companies in the same space?

Like many food and beverages companies, PepsiCo wants to stay relevant to consumers who are looking for healthier drink and snack options.  By putting human behavior at the center of their business, PepsiCo is building a new trend prediction competitive advantage.

For Sustainability: Achieving Net-Zero emissions by 2040; Becoming Net Water Positive; and new goals to improve packaging sustainability, including reducing virgin plastic per serving by 50% and bold new goals from Pepsi and Frito-Lay brands.

Another of PepsiCo's biggest challenges: winning over millions of farmers to regenerative agriculture. PepsiCo is committed to transitioning to regenerative farming practices across 7 million acres, improve the livelihoods of 250,000 people in its agricultural supply chain, and sustainably source 100% of its key ingredients.

Why is Corporate Membership important to your organization?

As a major oil consumer, being a Corporate member will hopefully encourage more PepsiCo associates to take advantage of delving into the diverse opportunities that AOCS has to offer.   Seminars, Webinars, Annual meetings, and the diverse Divisions all provide new associates the access to key learnings about this important raw material.

Learn more about AOCS Corporate Membership.

AOCS Corporate Member Spotlight: Phillips 66

Phillips 66, an AOCS Corporate Member, is a company that focuses on providing a range of sustainable energy products to continue meeting the everchanging needs of the world.

In this spotlight, Katelyn Zachritz Director of Specialty Solvents Marketing, discusses what separates Phillips 66 from other providers as well as the importance of having a corporate membership.

What type of products/services does your company provide?

Phillips 66 is a downstream and midstream company that has four core business units, including Midstream, Chemicals, Refining and Marketing & Specialties. Our Chemicals segment consists primarily of our 50% joint venture interest in CPChem, which manufactures and markets petrochemicals and plastics worldwide.  

The Phillips 66 Chemicals team, which operates independent of the CPChem jv, includes our polypropylene and solvents businesses. Phillips 66 offers specialty hydrocarbon solvents from hexanes, to pentanes and heptane’s, and custom blends. Phillips 66 Specialty Solvents is a leader in the manufacturing and marketing of hydrocarbon solvents.  

For a complete list of our product offerings, please visit our product page.

What differentiates your company from companies in the same space?

Phillips 66 is your supplier of choice because we are the largest producer of high-quality Hexane in the U.S., offer a premium product at a competitive price, and can provide you with security of supply because we have an extremely effective logistics system in North America that can make timely deliveries and has a proven robust business continuity to ensure reliable supply.   

•Did you know? Phillips 66 hexane was created to optimize oil extraction and has been producing solvents for the oil extraction industry since the early 1940’s. 

•Did you know? Phillips 66 hexane is 99%+ pure C6 isomers and the normal hexane concentration is 60% minimum and typically 62%.  

•Did you know? Customers share that Phillips 66 hexane makes their plants run more efficiently. 

Did you know? Phillips 66 has the best-in-class logistics coverage in North America, with 11 points of distribution in the U.S. and has capabilities to reach around the globe. Our strategic supply points provide business continuity and last mile logistics advantages for our customers. We have expansive rail, truck, barge, and terminal networks with a dedicated rail fleet for hexane preventing any cross contamination and gulf coast barge and vessel shipping access. 

What are some recent innovations your company is most proud of?

Katelyn Zachritz, Director, Specialty Solvents Marketing
Katelyn Zachritz
Director of Specialty
Solvents Marketing
We are proud of the evolution of Rodeo Renewed. The San Francisco Refinery consists of two facilities linked by our pipelines. The Santa Maria facility is located in Arroyo Grande, California, 200 miles south of San Francisco, California, while the Rodeo facility is located in the San Francisco Bay Area. Intermediate refined products from the Santa Maria facility are shipped by pipeline to the Rodeo facility for upgrading into finished petroleum products. Refinery facilities include crude distillation, naphtha reforming, hydrocracking, hydrodesulfurization and delayed coking units, as well as a calciner. The refinery currently produces a high percentage of transportation fuels, including CARB-grade gasoline. Other products produced include fuel-grade petroleum coke. The majority of the refined petroleum products are distributed to customers in California by pipeline and barge. Additionally, refined petroleum products are exported to customers primarily in Latin America by waterborne cargo.

We are advancing our conversion plans at the San Francisco Refinery in Rodeo, California, to meet the growing demand for renewable fuels. The hydrotreater feedstock flexibility project reached full rates of 8,000 BPD (120 million gallons per year) of renewable diesel production in July 2021. Separately, the Rodeo Renewed refinery conversion project is expected to be finished in early 2024, subject to permitting and approvals. Consequently, we ceased operations of the Santa Maria facility in February 2023. Upon completion, the converted facility will initially have over 50,000 BPD (800 million gallons per year) of renewable fuels production capacity. The conversion will reduce emissions from the facility and produce lower carbon intensity transportation fuels. We plan to distribute our renewable diesel through new and existing channels, including approximately 600 branded retail sites in California.

For details of our HSE innovations, GHG targets and performance, see pages 18-19 and 30-47 in our current sustainability report and Phillips 66 ESG Library. 

Why is Corporate Membership important to your organization?

Phillips 66 is committed to the seed oil industry and views its position within this industry as one of strategic importance Phillips 66 believes it is important to align with AOCS to share our capabilities and let our customers know that we stand behind them and support them. 

Learn more about AOCS Corporate Membership.

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

AOCS Corporate Member Spotlight: Zero Acre Farms

Zero Acre Farms, an AOCS Silver Corporate Member, is a company that focuses on manufacturing oil that serves as an all-purpose cooking oil derived from the sugarcane plant.

In this spotlight, Dilip K. Nakhasi VP of Product Development, Quality & Innovation, discusses what separates Zero Acre from other providers as well as the challenges they will face in the coming years.

What type of products/services does your company provide?

Zero Acre Oil is an innovative cooking oil for flavorful food with healthier fats and a tiny environmental footprint. Its clean and its performance is unbeatable - frying to sautéing, aiolis, dressings, and beyond.

What differentiates your company from companies in the same space?

At Zero Acre, we believe a healthier world is possible with better oils and fats.

1. Highest levels of healthy fats (rich in monounsaturated fats).

2. Better for the planet
3. Less land, less water, less Carbon dioxide
4. Cleaner, better tasting food.

Dilip K. Nakhasi VP, Product Development, Quality & Innovation

Dilip K. Nakhasi VP of
Product Development,
Quality & Innovation

What are some recent innovations your company is most proud of?

Innovation edible oil with low in polyunsaturated, and saturated fats. Highest in monounsaturated fats (>90%). High in oxidative stability.

What do you think will be the biggest challenges for your company next year?

Educate the consumers with the healthy benefits of Zero Acre oils and giving the healthy oil change to the world.

Why is Corporate Membership important to your organization?

Being the Corporate Member of prestigious Global Scientific Organization of Fats & Oils gives the Zero Acre Farms the well-deserved visibility to the scientific and corporate world of the Fats & Oil Industry.

Learn more about AOCS Corporate Membership.

Thursday, June 15, 2023

2024 AOCS Awards are Open for Nominations and Applications

We are now accepting nominations and applications for the 2024 AOCS Awards Program. AOCS awards celebrate individuals that make outstanding contributions to science, technology, industry, our Society, and the world.

Your nominations and applications bring a spotlight on exciting research and remarkable innovation and recognize leadership and service at all levels. With your support, the AOCS Awards Program can continue to contribute to our supportive community and celebrate the diversity and breadth of interests in our community.

How to nominate

  1. Read the full award descriptions and eligibility requirements on the AOCS Awards page.
  2. Log in to the AOCS Awards Submission Portal using your AOCS credentials to submit a nomination or application. Need help logging in? Contact Karen Kesler at or +1 217-693-4813.
  3. Email Lucas Censi if you have any questions.

Deadlines for nominations and applications

Need help?

Download the AOCS Awards Submission Portal Guide (.pdf) for a step-by-step guide that walks you through the application process.

Watch a “Nominator Information Session” recording to see live demos and tutorials of the Awards Portal, including how to create your profile, upload materials and complete your application.

Tuesday, June 13, 2023

AOCS Corporate Member Spotlight: Natures Crops International

Terviva Inc.

Natures Crops International (NCI), an AOCS Bronze Corporate Member, is a vertically integrated specialty oilseed provider.

In this spotlight, Crystal Cormier, VP of Operations, discusses what separates NCI from other oilseed providers as well as their most recent product Ahiflower®, an omega-3+6 solution.

What type of products/services does your company provide?

NCI has a global leadership position with its 3 core products: meadowfoam and crambe, used in the personal care industry, and Ahiflower®, an omega-3+6 solution. With all three crops, NCI delivers novel, plant-derived oils and products that are science-based, sustainable, traceable, and fully controlled throughout the supply chain.

What differentiates your company from companies in the same space?

NCI is a leading, vertically integrated, natural products business, combining sustainable agriculture and life sciences. NCI manages the entire supply chain, "From soil to oil. Naturally."

NCI has a state of the art production plant with the ability for both small and large-scale mechanical/cold pressing with unique refining capabilities from our small-batch refinery located in Prince Edward Island, Canada.

Crystal Cormier, VP Operations, at Natures Crops International.
Crystal Cormier, VP of Operations at Natures Crops International.

What are some recent innovations your company is most proud of?

Ahiflower oil is the richest, non-GMO plant-based source of omega 3-6-9 oil currently available and is clinically proven to be up to 4 times more effective than flaxseed oil. Every acre of regeneratively grown Ahiflower produces as much omega-rich oil as 500,000 anchovies.

What do you think will be the biggest challenges for your company next year?

As Natures Crops International continues to grow, the biggest challenge we will face is the need to fulfill all vacant positions at our oilseed processing facility and refinery in PEI, Canada.

Why is Corporate Membership important to your organization?

AOCS corporate membership is important to Natures Crops International because it provides valuable networking opportunities, access to industry expertise and resources, and the ability to collaborate with other companies and organizations in the field of oils, fats, and lipids. Being a part of AOCS enhances Natures Crops International’s credibility visibility, and ability to meet customer demands by staying at the forefront of industry trends and innovation.

Learn more about AOCS Corporate Membership.

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

Announcing 2023 AOCS Award winners

The AOCS Awards Program recognizes leaders who work passionately to advance the science and technology of oils, fats, proteins, surfactants, and related materials.

Congratulations to the 30+ scientists and technical professionals who won awards this year!

Visit the AOCS Awards page to view winners in each category:

Award winners will be recognized throughout the 2023 AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo, including at the Opening Celebration, during select technical sessions, and Division luncheons and dinners. There's still time to register, if you haven't already, to join us in Denver and help us celebrate these exceptional members of our community!

Friday, February 10, 2023

AOCS Announces Retirement of Director, Technical Services

Long-time AOCS member and AOCS Director, Technical Services, Scott Bloomer, announced his intention to retire from the post at the end of the year. Under Dr. Bloomer’s leadership, the AOCS Technical Services has built a team of dedicated professionals, expanded the scope of AOCS’ portfolio of products and services, and grown revenue.

“Scott has served AOCS with dedication and distinction. He transformed the technical services department by building an outstanding staff team and putting in place a number of reforms and new programs that will help AOCS be successful for many years to come. The entire AOCS staff team is grateful, not only Scott’s leadership and technical contributions, but for his humor and warmth which contributed to the culture of the entire organization,” said AOCS CEO, Patrick Donnelly.

Dr. Bloomer become a member of AOCS in 1995 while working as a Senior Research Scientist at Cargill. He also held positions at Land O’Lakes and Archer Daniels Midland before joining AOCS as its Director of Technical Services in 2017. He published his first peer-reviewed research paper in JAOCS, and later served as a peer reviewer and Associate Editor of JAOCS.

“I have considered AOCS to be my professional ‘home’ from the time I was in graduate school, where I spent many hours in the library stacks learning lipid science through the pages of JAOCS. As a member, meeting and learning from lipid specialists at annual meetings was enriching professionally and led to many fruitful opportunities. Working on staff at AOCS offered the chance to work much more closely with AOCS members and support their input as volunteers. I treasure the deeper relationships I have formed with many stellar scientists as we have worked together to advance the state of knowledge in the many fields represented by AOCS members,” said Bloomer.

AOCS has initiated a search for the next Director, Technical Services (PDF). Qualified candidates should submit a resume and cover letter outlining interest and qualifications to no later than April 3, 2023.

Monday, January 23, 2023

Make a difference in the AOCS community

Volunteer with AOCS

AOCS Divisions, Sections, and Common Interest Groups are looking for volunteers to fill leadership team positions! These groups are at the forefront of all members activities. As a volunteer, you will have the opportunity to connect with new colleagues and develop your professional profile.

Leadership team members help develop networking events and interest area-focused activities and content like Midweek Mixers, AOCS Webinars , and AOCS Annual Meeting programming.

Sign up for a volunteer role by February 24, 2023.

Open Leadership Team Positions

Leadership team members are voted upon by the respective AOCS community, with Division elections occurring in March of every year. Division positions are 1-year terms with a maximum of three consecutive 1-year terms. AOCS membership and Division, Section, and/or CIG membership is required.

Questions? Email Travis Skodack, Director, AOCS Membership. We can help you find a role that's right for you.

  • Chairperson/President
    • Leads meetings and suggests when meetings should be held
    • Attends other meetings of the Society as a representative of the group
    • Works with other members of the leadership team to determine the priorities of the group
    • Identifies volunteers to coordinate programs, including awards, webinars and mentoring programs
    • Writes a chair message for 2 newsletters per year
    • Identifies future topics and ideas for AOCS to consider
  • Vice-Chairperson/Vice-President
    • Divisions only: AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo Technical Program Committee Chair for the Division
      • Develop session topics, titles and description
      • Identifies and secures session chairs
      • Works closely with the Division leadership team to execute the technical program for the annual meeting
    • Sections and CIGs
      • Attends meetings and actively participates in support of the good of the group
      • Leads programs or activities, as delegated by the chair
  • Secretary-Treasurer/Secretary
    • Takes the minutes and/or action items from any meeting of the leadership team and provides them to AOCS
    • Reviews the financial activity, if requested by AOCS staff, to ensure the financial health of the group
    • Coordinates any networking or social event held during the AOCS Annual Meeting & Expo

Sign up today to contribute your voice to the AOCS community.

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

AOCS Corporate Member Spotlight: Terviva Inc.

Terviva Inc.

Terviva Inc., an AOCS Silver Corporate Member, is a food and agriculture innovation company partnering with farmers to grow pongamia, a climate-resilient tree, which produces abundant protein- and oil-rich legumes.

In this spotlight, Dilip Nakhasi, VP, Innovation Edible Oils, provides an overview of Terviva, its products, and how they differentiate themselves from other companies.

What type of products or services does your company provide?

Terviva produces and manufacturers vegetable oil (Ponova Oil) and plant protein (Ponova Protein) from the beans of the pongamia tree.

We address nutrition, taste, and functionality challenges in plant-based foods. We bridge consumer demand to food that regenerates communities and the planet.

What differentiates your company from companies in the same space?

Dilip Nakhasi, VP of Innovation Edible Oils at Terviva Inc.
Dilip Nakhasi, VP of Innovation Edible Oils at Terviva Inc.

We differentiate ourselves by nurturing people and planet by:

  1. Carbon storage, soil health, and water use and quality
  2. Zero deforestation land use policy
  3. Agroforestry and pollinators
  4. Village-level influencer program and farmer livelihoods

What are some recent innovations your company is most proud of?

Terviva is proud to bring Edible Pongamia Oil and protein innovation to the food industry. Pongamia is a regenerative super power that can nurture the planet and enhance our food system.

What do you think will be the biggest challenges for your company next year?

Increasing our production capacity to meet market demand.

Why is Corporate Membership important to your organization?

Being associated with the premium scientific society in the edible oil industry increases our visibility to academics, industry, and government agencies.

Learn more about AOCS Corporate Membership.