To help row crop and specialty crop growers maximize their agricultural investments through the use of patented biological, nutritional, seed treatment and inoculant technologies.
Verdesian Life Sciences was built from the ground up. Like you, we are focused on maximizing your crop’s potential by providing it with nutrients in the most efficient way possible.
To do this, we’ve assembled some of the best and brightest people in the industry. Science and technology is something we don’t shy away from which is why you’ll find us developing ground-breaking nitrogen management technology with the researchers at the world-renowned Los Alamos National Laboratory. But it’s not limited to nitrogen. We are developing and producing nutrient management and efficiency technologies, nutritionals and micronutrients, seed treatments and inoculants, crop health chemistry and biologicals, as well as soil surfactants for the agriculture, turf and ornamental industries.
While our head office is located in Cary, North Carolina, we have production and manufacturing facilities strategically located in Visalia, California; Pasco, Washington; and Kentland, Indiana, which give us the ability to produce and custom blend large-scale or small volume runs of liquid and dry formulations. If you need it, we can produce it.
Chief Executive Officer
Kenneth Avery is a strategic leader with more than 25 years of experience in delivering on global, financial and operational goals. His expertise within agriculture spans across row crop operations and vegetable markets to seed and trait engineering. Avery’s ultimate vision for agriculture is to provide farmers with better opportunities through solutions based on sustainability for growers and their land.
Through a transformative leadership style, Avery strives to reach long-term business success by enabling internal resources to reach 100 percent of their capabilities. By committing to a consistent strategy and approaching business with a global perspective, Avery has created value in a diverse variety of industries and operations.
Avery earned a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in accounting from Mississippi State University, and is a certified public accountant. Prior to being named as CEO of Verdesian Life Sciences, Avery was the vice president of global vegetables at Monsanto. Throughout his career, Avery has also held positions with Delta & Pine Land Company, Eagle Materials and Arthur Andersen LLP.
Chief Operating Officer
Greg Thompson is responsible for global product development and operations, regulatory affairs, and sales and marketing at Verdesian Life Sciences.
His prior experience includes time as executive vice president, sales and marketing at Nufarm. While in that role, he was instrumental in driving growth and diversification in the agriculture and specialty business sectors. Thompson spent several years as director of national accounts at Etigra, where he was responsible for sales and marketing in the vegetation management and turf and ornamental segments.
Previously, Thompson worked for ten years at BASF in various leadership positions, the latest as regional manager of turf and ornamentals, where he was instrumental in developing and implementing strategic planning, channel strategy and communications.
Francis X. Pirozzi
CPA, Chief Financial Officer
With a proven track record in start-up enterprises as well as established firms, Frank Pirozzi brings an excellent set of financial skills to help lead Verdesian.
His experience includes dealings with global mergers, acquisitions and risk management for diverse agricultural and consumer companies as well as financial providers. Most recently, Pirozzi was director and assistant treasurer of Red Hat Inc. where he managed a global $1.3 billion portfolio of financial investments and risk management for an enterprise that grew revenue from $600 million to more than $1 billion within a four-year span.
Prior to his financial oversight at Red Hat, Pirozzi was vice president of finance for Etigra in Cary, North Carolina. He has also served in various managerial positions in North Carolina-based businesses, including R.H. Donnelley, TIMCO Aviation Services Inc., Jefferson Pilot Financial and Remington Arms Company.
Vice President of Operations
Mike King, vice president of operations, is responsible for overseeing Verdesian's manufacturing, procurement, supply chain, customer service and logistics.
King was previously operations manager with Makhteshim Agan of North America. Prior to that, he spent almost 20 years working in various positions in operations for FMC Corporation, serving as scheduler, planner, assistant plant manager and plant manager.
King has a bachelor's degree in business management from Jacksonville University. He is Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) through the Association for Operations Management and is a Lean 5S facilitator.
President, Specialty Micronutrients