Garst Seed reshuffles marketing and sales operations

SLATER, IA: Garst Seed, the subject of a biotech controversy during

last year's Kraft taco shell recall, has reorganized its marketing and

sales operations, switching responsibility for PR in the process.

Jeff Lacina, Garst PR manager, will now report to the new marketing

manager, Lori Thomas, a 14-year company veteran. Lacina had previously

reported to the company's marketing communications manager - a role that

has been phased out.

The incumbent in that role, Mike Smidt, has been named national sales

manager. Steve Klein, marketing manager since June 2000, has been named

director of sales and marketing.

Lacina said the new structure will involve more senior managers in

company communications and marketing efforts. Lacina will remain the

primary media contact.

Garst received extensive media attention last year when Starlink corn, a

line it markets for use in animal feed, found its way into taco shells

by Kraft Foods. The corn had not been approved for human consumption, so

the company recalled the product. The incident triggered a national

debate about biotech foods.

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