Bluffton-based Pretzels, Inc. announced Jan. 7 that Ku Han has joined the company as chief operating officer. Han will have overall responsibility for oversight of the company’s manufacturing, quality, and product management; he will work closely with Paul Schaum, who was appointed as chief technology officer, according to the company announcement.

Greg Pearson, chief executive officer of Pretzels, said in the announcement, “Ku joins our team during an exciting time. His experience in food manufacturing will further strengthen our executive leadership team and aligns well with our business strategy, as we continue to expand our facilities and enhance our capabilities. Ku has the operational expertise and proven track record to lead Pretzels’ daily operations and exceed our customers’ needs.”

Pretzels is currently expanding its existing Plymouth facility by over 120,000 square feet. Pretzels has expanded its team recently, with key hires including Pearson (formerly VP/GM of the pasta business unit at Conagra Foods/TreeHouse Foods), VP of Sales Mike Kaczynski (formerly head of US Sales at Evans Food Group), VP of Marketing and Innovation Tim Jax (formerly GM at TreeHouse Foods), and Director of R&D Carey Hoffman (formerly associate director of new product development at Hershey).

Han most recently served as the vice president of operations for Craftmark Bakery, a supplier of frozen bakery products to foodservice and in-store bakery customers. Before joining Craftmark Bakery, he served as the vice president of operations for Lassonde Pappas, a private brand supplier of cranberry sauces and beverages. He also has held various operations and manufacturing positions with Target, PepsiCo, and Bee Gee Shrimp Company. He earned a bachelor of science in industrial engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

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