Mark Wetterau, Chairman and CEO of Golden State Foods, Dies

May 11, 2023
He acquired and led the processor and foodservice provider to incredible growth; dead at just 65.

Mark Wetterau Sr., whose Wetterau Associates purchased Golden State Foods in 1998 and installed him as chairman and CEO, died May 8 at just 65 years old. He passed away peacefully at home “due to ongoing health issues,” according to the company.

Mark joined the family business, St. Louis-based Wetterau Inc., and served in various leadership roles, including as chairman and CEO of Shop ‘n Save. He went on to start his own Wetterau Associates, which invested in a number of businesses, including Quality Beverage, where he served as chairman and CEO from 1993 to 1998.

Then came Golden State Foods. During his 25 years of leadership, Mark led the company to incredible growth, from $1.4 billion to more than $7 billion in annual revenue.

Passionate about community involvement and charitable service, Mark chaired and served on numerous non-profit boards throughout the country. His obituary says Mark’s proudest accomplishment was establishing the GSF Foundation, which helps children and families in need in the areas where GSF associates live and work. Since its inception in 2002, the foundation has raised more than $60 million to support 850 children’s charities and schools throughout the U.S.

He is survived by wife Virginia, three children and three grandchildren. Memorial donations can be made to the GSF Foundation and the Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.

About the Author

Dave Fusaro | Editor in Chief

Dave Fusaro has served as editor in chief of Food Processing magazine since 2003. Dave has 30 years experience in food & beverage industry journalism and has won several national ASBPE writing awards for his Food Processing stories. Dave has been interviewed on CNN, quoted in national newspapers and he authored a 200-page market research report on the milk industry. Formerly an award-winning newspaper reporter who specialized in business writing, he holds a BA in journalism from Marquette University. Prior to joining Food Processing, Dave was Editor-In-Chief of Dairy Foods and was Managing Editor of Prepared Foods.

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