MEQUON, WIS. — Fromm Family Foods, a fifth-generation family-owned pet food manufacturer, announced Nov. 8 it has promoted Danielle Opetz, Ph.D., to a leadership position within the company’s R&D team, following her completion of a doctorate in nutritional sciences.

Opetz formerly served at Fromm for seven years, first as a nutritionist and training manager before moving on to the role of nutritional consultant when she began pursuing her doctorate in nutritional science from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Following this educational feat, Fromm has promoted Opetz to a new leadership role, in which she will help the company bring innovative products to market and improve existing formulations.

Opetz will be tasked with researching new products, conducting biological assessments, spearheading technical training, and serving as a liaison to the industry.

“It’s very gratifying to work for a company that supports your passions,” Opetz said. “Theoretical education and cutting-edge research coupled with practical industry experience will let me provide an integrated approach to animal health and nutrition. In this new role I’m excited to help impact the science behind how Fromm develops its products. Research is constantly growing and evolving and I’m ready to bring my skills and connections within the academic community to Fromm and their mission.”

Opetz’s doctoral work focused on dietary impacts on body composition, physical activity, blood hormones and fecal characteristics of adult cats experiencing weight loss or conditions leading to weight loss, according to Fromm. Her expertise is expected to drive the company’s knowledge of pet health, inform its ingredient innovation, and meet trending demands in the marketplace, while also assisting customer service, marketing and sales.

“As a company, Fromm has a long-standing tradition of taking a science-based approach to companion animal health and nutrition,” said Tom Nieman, president and owner at Fromm Family Foods. “Danielle’s doctoral work and practical industry experience will help continue that tradition as we develop new premium foods and treats. It is a great asset to have a Ph.D. animal nutritionist on staff and even more rare to have someone with her extensive experience in research and pet food — she brings a great deal to our team of innovators.”

Prior to achieving her doctorate, Opetz earned a bachelor’s degree in Zoology and an advanced degree in animal science.

Read more about personnel changes throughout the industry.