The American Bakers Association (ABA) named Howard “Robin” Alton III chairman of the association. He will be formerly inducted during the association’s upcoming convention, April 14-18 in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Alton is the chairman and CEO of the family-owned Pan-O-Gold Baking Co., which supplies bread and buns to restaurants, fast-food chains, supermarkets, military bases and sports arenas in nine states of the upper Midwest.
In an interview, Alton said he will strive to achieve the agenda and goals set by the association. The focus of the 2012-2013 executive committee will be dealing with commodity volatility and setting standards for food safety regulations.
ABA is the only end product association on the Commodity Task Force, which lobbies various federal government agencies on various aspects of agriculture policy and tries to tamp down the wild swings in commodities prices. “The task force was successful in getting some legislation passed to slow down some of the speculation,” Alton said. “But stabilized markets did more. Speculators still drive the market artificially.”
The ABA executive board also is working to consolidate the several different food safety inspections that occur in wholesale bakeries. ABA has partnered with AIB International to develop an enhanced AIB audit that would consolidate other food safety audits into one overarching one. ABA also has partnered with other baking groups to develop sanitation classes to inform bakers of sanitation requirements. The goal is to enhance food safety but reduce the number of food safety audits.