Westerbeek named president of Smithfield Hog Production operations

Kraig Westerbeek

Smithfield Foods, Smithfield, Virginia, has named Kraig Westerbeek as president of its hog production operations effective Feb. 29, reporting to President and CEO Shane Smith.

Westerbeek, pictured above, brings more than 30 years of industry experience to his new role. His career with Smithfield began in 1993 as environmental manager for Quarter M Farms, which later merged with Murphy Family Farms.

He held leadership roles of increasing responsibility throughout his career, serving as environmental compliance director for eight years before being named assistant vice president of environment, health and safety compliance in 2010.

From 2014 to 2017, he served as vice president, support operations for Smithfield Hog Production, where he managed more than 100 employees and was responsible for environmental compliance, engineering, construction, feed manufacturing, transportation and animal welfare. 

Westerbeek also played a leading role in the formation of Smithfield Renewables, the company’s carbon reduction and renewable energy platform.

He led Smithfield Renewables from its introduction in 2017, managing manure-to-energy investments as well as grain supply chain and energy and production efficiency projects, until 2022, when he was named chief development officer of Monarch Renewables, a joint venture between Smithfield Foods, Roeslein Alternative Energy and TPG Rise Climate.

Monarch projects capture methane from manure and convert it into carbon-negative renewable natural gas to power homes, vehicles and businesses.