Market research and product development expert Huston Keith is the principal and founder of Keymark Associates.
Under his direction, Keymark Associates has published numerous custom and market studies. In his 27-year career, he has conducted over 300 multi-client and market research studies in areas such as flexible packaging, cut-and-stack labels, shrink films, case-ready meats, polystyrene foam packaging, plastic sheet markets, plastic foam markets, ovenable and microwavable trays, foodservice disposables, hot-fill bottles and many other areas. He has been a featured writer in Flexible Packaging, Snack Food, The National Provisioner, and other food and packaging publications.
Prior to starting his firm in 1994, Keith was a market development manager of barrier packaging for Amoco Foam Products Company (now part of Pactiv Corporation). He led the development of the barrier foam tray and was instrumental in its successful adoption for several fresh meat packaging applications. During his tenure, sales of the barrier packaging product line tripled.
His marketing skills are very diverse, having also been a consumer research manager for Holiday Inns. He directed and authored several market research projects leading to the successful start-up of the Embassy Suite and Hampton Inn hotel chains.
Sharon P. Derbyshire, MBA, of Contract Market Research, a firm focused on the packaging industry, has 23 years of professional marketing and technical experience as a consultant with Amoco, Dow, and Burger King. She has been involved in technical development of new barrier packaging, dual ovenable and other new packages.
Gary Gates is a consultant in the labeling industry and President Emeritus of Gates Packaging, a shrink label distributor.
Albert Hutfles, MBA, President of Strategic Marketing Decisions, a leading consumer research firm in Atlanta, has 30 years experience consumer research experience with Cryovac, Sprint Corporation, Coca-Cola Enterprises, Booz-Allen & Hamilton and Maritz. He handles focus groups, executive interviewing, and consumer studies for Keymark.
David Lindblade, BS Chemistry, consultant, has 26 years as a business development, marketing and sales executive with AET Films, ExxonMobil Films, and Goodyear Chemicals. He has led development of several new products and has extensive experience in snack and confection films.