The Pizzey Story
Glenn and Linda Pizzey weren’t starting from scratch when they founded what would become one of the largest providers of processed flaxseed in North America. The Pizzey family, after all, has called western Manitoba home for more than a century, making their living growing and processing crops—including flaxseed—over several generations.
The two of them have long believed in the nutritional power of flaxseed. Glenn grew it on the farm and soaked up all he could at industry meetings, even when many thought it was a dead-end crop.
Then, they struck gold when Linda started baking flax bread in the family kitchen under the name Country Ovens. She sold flax loaves by the hundreds every Saturday at the St. Norbert farmers’ market—so they had to free up more kitchen space back at the family farm to keep up with demand.
They converted extra space in the farmhouse into a small commercial bakery. 150,000 loaves of bread later, the operation was eventually moved to a renovated building on the farm.
Their success led them to a new business venture in 1993, when they retired Country Ovens and started Pizzey’s Milling and Baking Company, shifting from just bread baking to also supplying processed flax to manufacturers. Three decades and millions of pounds of flaxseed later, they haven’t looked back.
Today, they operate a 40,000 sq. ft. facility, and their on-site, fully equipped laboratory is an innovation hub where they study the ins-and-outs of flax science.
And through it all, they’re still the same family. Still on the farm just south of Angusville, MB. Still believing as strongly in the power of flaxseed as they did on day one.
Meet the team
President / CEO
Linda Pizzey is the CEO of Pizzey Ingredients and has overall responsibility for finance, market development and sales.
Linda has nearly 30 years of experience in the flaxseed industry. In 1991 she started a predecessor company known as Country Ovens. In 1993, her husband Glenn joined the company and it became known as Pizzey’s Milling and Baking Company, later operating as Pizzey’s Milling. Under Linda’s leadership, this company evolved from a small, home-based bakery to become North America’s largest flaxseed processor for the human food, pet food and animal feed markets.
After selling their former business, Linda and Glenn returned to the flaxseed industry in 2013 and formed Pizzey Ingredients, which continues to lead the industry with its focus on quality, innovation, and nutrition.
Vice President / COO / Director R&D
Glenn Pizzey is the Vice President and COO of Pizzey Ingredients. He oversees the milling operation and the quality assurance program and is also responsible for product development and research for the company.
Glenn has been involved in primary agriculture since the early 1970’s, as an elite seed grower and operator of an authorized seed plant in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Glenn holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Manitoba and is a member of IFT, AOCS, AACC and ACS.
Together with Linda, Glenn founded and operated Pizzey’s Milling. During his time at Pizzey’s Milling, Glenn was awarded several patents for products and processes he developed for the business. Through his involvement with industry organizations including the Flax Council of Canada, Flax 2015 and the Flax Growers of Western Canada, Glenn was instrumental in moving the flaxseed industry from reliance on the industrial oil market to a nutraceutical ingredient in both the human and companion animal diets.
Glenn has collaborated on many nutritional and scientific studies with leading flaxseed researchers in North America and has presented his work at several professional meetings including AOCS and AACC annual meetings, and a University of Ghent and Texas A&M University joint symposium in Belgium. His work has been cited in several publications by various researchers. His lab at Pizzey’s Milling produced comprehensive research data on pesticide residues that was used in support of the successful GRAS application for flaxseed at the FDA and was used in support of the Health Canada health claim for milled flaxseed.
Director of Strategic Development and Sales
Mary Ekman leads Pizzey Ingredients’ ongoing work to advance the flaxseed industry through spearheading new product development and supporting vital research projects. Mary also works closely with CEO Linda Pizzey in leading Pizzey Ingredients’ business development team and supports the company’s Quality Assurance team.
Mary has over nineteen years of cross-functional experience in the food industry. Mary was the U.S. Operations Manager and a member of the business development team of Pizzey’s Milling, the company founded by her parents Glenn and Linda Pizzey, prior to its sale in 2007 and during its transition to new ownership.
Before joining Pizzey Ingredients in 2015, Mary was Strategic Operations Manager for a major U.S. dairy and feed company. Mary previously served in various Quality Assurance roles with leading US food companies. Mary earned a Bachelor of Science in Food Science from North Dakota State University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix.
Director of Marketing and Compliance
Julie Faber, Esq. is the Director of Marketing and Compliance and is a member of Pizzey Ingredients’ business development team.
Julie brings her expertise in the culinary arts and legal fields to Pizzey Ingredients, enhancing the company’s ability to provide sound guidance to its customers regarding issues such as product development and regulatory compliance. Julie also assists the Quality Assurance team with compliance-related matters, and was integral to developing the company’s SQF, C-TPAT and Organic programs.
Julie earned a Bachelor of Professional Studies degree in Culinary Arts Management, with honors, from the Culinary Institute of America and a Juris Doctorate, magna cum laude, from Pace Law School. Julie practiced law for five years immediately prior to joining Pizzey Ingredients in 2014. Before attending law school, Julie was West Coast Sales Manager for her parents’ company, Pizzey’s Milling.
Derek Chuchmuch is the Production Manager. He is responsible for ensuring all orders are produced to Pizzey Ingredients’ high quality and food safety standards, in a timely and cost-effective manner. Derek also has overall supervisory responsibility for our production staff and is a member of our HACCP team.
Derek came to Pizzey Ingredients in 2016 with a wide range of experience. He started his career working for a local farm and tree moving company before beginning work in Alberta’s oil fields. In his 17 years in the oil industry, Derek quickly advanced his career from roughneck, to drilling and into management. Immediately prior to joining Pizzey Ingredients, Derek worked on our farm, JG Pizzey, Inc.
Quality Assurance Manager
Leslie Luhowy is the Quality Assurance Manager and SQF Manager. Leslie is responsible for quality standards of the processing plant, documentation of procedures, and upkeep of all manuals pertaining to the operation of the processing plant. Leslie was integral to creating and implementing our SQF and Organic programs and obtaining Kosher certification.
Leslie has 15 years of experience in quality assurance as it relates to flaxseed.
Leslie holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Manitoba.
Lab Manager & Technical Customer Service
Jacquie Mazur is the Lab Manager and Technical Customer Service Associate for Pizzey Ingredients. She maintains and operates the on-site lab, which is equipped with all systems necessary to monitor the quality of all ingredients shipped to customers. Jacquie also assists our customers with their technical and documentation requests.
Jacquie studied Agriculture at the University of Manitoba and obtained an Animal Health Technology Diploma from Red River Community College. Jacquie worked as an Animal Health Technologist for 17 years. She then worked as a Lab Technician in Quality Assurance for 6 years in a flax milling facility and 1 year in a canola oil refinery before joining Pizzey Ingredients in 2014.
Jackie Sawchuk is the Finance Manager for Pizzey Ingredients. She has a diploma in Business Administration from the Stratford Career Institute. Jackie has over ten years of experience in finance.
Jane Herchak coordinates the shipment of our flaxseed products and provides excellent customer service. She has several years of experience in the flax industry.