ASI SQF TECHNICAL DIRECTOR
ASI SQF Technical Director Greg Pallaske has spent nearly all his career in the food industry, starting as an assistant manager trainee in fast food and, for 15 years, working his way through the management ranks of various restaurants from drive-ins to pizza joints to fine dining to theme restaurants to nightclubs.
After a couple of kids came along, Greg realized that restaurant managers worked a lot of hours and a lot of nights, weekends, and holidays, and that restaurant management was for the younger generation. So, working part time as a waiter or bartender (and taking out an incredible amount of student loans) Greg went back to school at the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in Environmental Science and Policy (which he never used).
The good news was that degree, coupled with 15 years of restaurant manager experience, gave him a shot as an environmental health (food) inspector for the City of Madison, WI. Each day for the next 7 years he would leave the office in the morning heading to his territory on the west side of town, vowing to “keep Madison safe from vomiting and diarrhea”. Along the way Greg earned his Master’s Degree in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development (which he never used) from UW – Madison (GO BUCKY!).
That degree, coupled with his experience both managing and inspecting restaurants, earned Greg a shot at becoming Chief of the Food Safety and Recreational Licensing program for the State of Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services. For 7 more years Greg oversaw the inspections statewide of restaurants, swimming pools, lodging, body art, and pretty much anything else the legislature decided to assign.
One day the politics became too much – probably after a state Senator told him (in a public hearing) that inspection of food establishments was a waste of time – if a restaurant was dirty, people would stop going there, the restaurant would go out of business, and a better one would open in its place! In other words, food establishments are self-regulating. (The gory details have been omitted on purpose).
The good news was that Greg ran into an old friend who had recently crossed over to the industry side of the street and needed someone with Regulatory experience, so Greg went to work for a national food distributor and then for an international baking company – spending more than 10 years in the Chicago area.
Today, Greg lives a block from the beach in east-central Florida and enjoys the abundant sunshine and fresh seafood while still doing his part in the food industry. As a technical Director for ASI, Greg oversees the audits of a number of full or part time professionals – always with the goal of improving consistency and uniformity by looking at what is important to help our clients protect their businesses and their customers. Our goal is to help our customers by being a fresh and experienced set of eyes. Audits should be a learning experience, and, by getting out and doing some audits himself, Greg is maintaining his lifelong practice of being able to see the operation from the side of the owner/manager as well as the inspector/auditor. He hopes to meet you, in person, very soon.
SNIPPED FRESH PRODUCE INC.
Snipped Fresh Produce Inc. is committed and active in a continuing program of implementing, documenting, improving and maintaining food safety programs to promote safe quality and wholesome foods to our customers and to the community.
We are Food Safety / HACCP Compliant with ongoing training to all our employees to insure that our products are handled to a higher standard in the Produce business.
Anthony DeMarco, Food Safety/HACCP Coordinator – PCQI, had this to say about ASI:
“ASI has been a pleasure to work with for all our Food Safety needs over the past 5 years. The learning lunches are a very valuable tool and every time I call with a question I always get the answer. Jeff and John are always a great help as well.”
ASI TECHNICAL DIRECTOR
I was born and raised in the west end of Toronto which was 5 blocks away from the slaughtering plants. During the summer the air was not fresh. I joined Canadian Food Inspection Agency in 1979 where I was one of the first inspectors trained in HACCP. I met my wife Liz in January of 1980 and we were married in September of that year and had a lovely daughter named Jennifer. I left CFIA in 1997 to pursue a carrier as a HACCP coordinator for a poultry processing facility. In 2003 I left and started working for a large freezer company in Brampton. After 5 years I left and went into my own business. I could see that people were not going to have a full time HACCP coordinator but someone they can rely on to perform the same duties. That summer I received a call from my previous employer that he was having an ASI audit and wondered if I would return to help them. After the audit which was conducted by Chris Middleton he informed me that he was leaving and since they had no auditors in Canada, that I should apply.
I remember the day that Kim Sobotka called me to interview me in 2008. Her second question to me was if I was afraid of flying. I said NO even though I had never flown before and was scared as you know what. I thought how many times can ASI fly me…..HA-HA. The following week they flew me to Calgary. I had to take pills to even get on the plane. After a few years I was promoted to ASI Technical Director. I left ASI for a brief time. The new ownership (Charray Williams) and I always got along well. She called me and asked me to come back which I readily agreed.
My role now is Technical Director. I look after all GMP audit reports for review, expenses, customer complaints, SQF pre-assessment, and 2 companies that I track corrective actions for. I conduct monthly meeting with the auditors and any changes that are coming their way. I am on call for all of ASI clients 24/7.