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Emily Cruz

Director of Innovation

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I am a Seattleite through and through. I grew up here, where calling someone a litter bug was just about the most insulting thing that could roll off your tongue. I love that no matter which direction I go there's a good cup of coffee (black please), a serene body of water and a majestic mountain view.

What Inspires Me:

They say inspiration is everywhere and for me that's food; I'm pretty much always thinking about food. I read industry and consumer magazines, read cookbooks and blogs for pleasure, and could get lost scrolling through pictures on Instagram and Pinterest. 

Guiltiest Food Pleasure:

I love a sweet treat, especially Fran's Smoked Sea Salt Caramels.

Areas of Specialization:

I'm a member of the leadership team and head up all innovation services we provide our for our clients. I bring a creative culinary-focused approach to projects, especially those requiring innovative flavor concepting and white space analysis. I help shape the strategy for innovation projects with our clients and talented CuliNex team and execute an array of services to find the breakthrough food product ideas that will intercept future consumer desires, as well as ensuring we have the best practices in place across the company.

When I'm Not on the Bench:

I enjoy hanging out with my husband, friends and family, and particularly snuggling with our yorkie Chewy. I love hosting dinners and get togethers at my house, particularly on the porch overlooking my vegetable garden. Sometimes when I'm lucky, my husband takes me flying in his airplane. 


  • Bachelor of Science, Culinary Nutrition - Johnson & Wales University
  • Associates in Applied Science, Culinary Arts - Johnson & Wales University

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