Post Categories: Meet the Experts

Reinventing Retail with the Daymon Thought Leadership Team

Daymon’s Thought Leadership Team is dedicated to identifying critical consumer trends that impact the retail industry and discovering ways to apply those insights within the Daymon business. This year, we’ll be featuring more of their research, strategies and suggestion, and their proprietary knowledge is not to be missed. Before you hear more from them, we’d like to introduce you to the team.


Throughout his 18-year tenure with Daymon, Dave Harvey, Vice President of Thought Leadership, has worked in numerous roles developing and driving strategy for clients in areas such as insights, marketing, operations and business management. He has also played a key contributing role with Daymon University—the company’s training program offered internally and to its partners—and has delivered over 35 trainings and seminars across 10 countries.

According to Harvey, one of the key issues retailers should be focused on in 2017 is further integrating the digital and in-store experiences. “The more seamless these can work together, the stronger the bond with the shopper,” he explains. “Online platforms should focus on convenience by eliminating the details and minutiae of regular shopping, thereby allowing retailers to focus their energies on creating in-store experiences that are engaging and relevant.”


Nicole Peranick is a trained chef and expert in the culinary space. In her role as Director of Thought Leadership—Culinary, she is charged with leveraging knowledge of global food and retail trends to guide innovation initiatives for Daymon and its partners. Prior to Daymon, Peranick was a successful pastry chef and owner of a premium baked goods company. She also has over a decade of experience in brand management, new product development and market research with major companies including Church & Dwight, Energizer and Millward Brown, Inc.

The biggest culinary trend Peranick sees impacting retail in 2017 is the rise of vegetable-centric eating. “Consumers do not want to be forced to choose between taste and health anymore. One of the greatest examples of this has been the evolution of ‘veg-centric’ eating—not vegetarian, not vegan, just making vegetables more ‘craveable’ and relevant to the many styles of modern-day eating,” she says. “In 2017, we will see more and more retailers continue to expand assortments of veg-centric solutions, while also reimagining ready meals, snacks and even services—think made-to-order veggie spirals and ground mushroom ‘meat’—to address this fundamental shift towards healthier eating.”


As the Director of Thought Leadership—Wellness, Carl Jorgensen provides insights and subject matter expertise encompassing all phases of organic, natural, non-GMO, allergen-free, nutritional, sustainability and in-store wellness. Prior to joining Daymon, Jorgensen was President of a USDA-accredited organic certification agency, CEO of an organic specialty food importer and distributor, and founder of a food testing laboratory that offered the world’s first commercial test to detect GMOs in food products.

In the coming year, Jorgensen stresses that understanding consumers’ wellness attitudes, beliefs and behaviors is critical to growing sales in a retail environment otherwise characterized by food price deflation, slowing volumes, shrinking margins and disappearing trade dollars.

“Wellness brands are the one bright spot at retail, with organic and natural sales projected to grow at a minimum of 11 percent per annum through 2020,” Jorgensen says. “Consumers increasingly consider food to be medicine, and look for products to address digestive issues, diabetes, obesity, inflammation and allergies. They want their food to be as close as possible to the way nature intended—making fresh, minimally processed, clean label and delicious the most important food attributes in retail today.”