Podcast: A Planet of Plenty | Dr. Mark Lyons

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About the Guest

Dr. Mark Lyons represents the second generation of the global business his father, Dr.
Pearse Lyons founded in 1980. With experience working in all regions and nearly all
departments — from palletizing bags in production to researching in the lab — he has a deep and uniquely personal knowledge of the company.

Based on Alltech’s belief that agriculture has the greatest potential to shape our world’s future, Dr. Lyons launched the company’s vision of Working Together for a Planet of Plenty™ in 2019. He has called for collaboration to improve nutrition, human and animal well-being, and the preservation of natural resources.
Dr. Lyons has spearheaded many critical projects, including simultaneously managing a biorefinery project in Kentucky, the establishment of a plant in Serbia, and the creation of Alltech’s flagship yeast production facility in São Pedro, Brazil. He also spent nearly four years in Mexico rebuilding the company’s solid-state fermentation plant in Serdan, which is one of the largest of its kind in the world.

In 2012, Dr. Lyons relocated to China, the world’s largest feed market, as part of
Alltech’s focus on the Asia-Pacific region. Living in Beijing and traveling throughout the
country, he led the Alltech China office for six years and focused on building bridges
between China and the wider industry through research, education, and strategic
initiatives. Prior to this, he served as director of North America from 2009 to 2011,
strengthening Alltech’s presence with the opening of new offices and growing
involvement in all agricultural sectors.

Today, Dr. Lyons is the president and CEO of Alltech, based at the company’s
headquarters in Kentucky. He has served as a board member of the American Feed
Industry Association and he is currently serving on the board of directors for
Transylvania University. Dr. Lyons is active in many industry groups, such as the
International Poultry Council, the National Turkey Federation, the National Chicken
Council and the National Pork Producers Council. He is also vice president of the Soil
and Fertilizer Alliance of China and is a committee member of the China Toxicology
Association.

He has published papers and patents in areas ranging from enzyme production to
global economics and is interested in the assurance of food safety and quality
throughout the entire food chain.

Dr. Lyons received his bachelor’s degree in political science and environmental science
in 1999 from the University of Chicago. He received his master’s degree in brewing and
distilling in 2001, followed by a Ph.D. in the area of solid-state fermentation, at Heriot-
Watt University in Edinburgh. He is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese, French, and German,
and he has a working knowledge of Mandarin.

What can you learn from this episode of Popular Pig?

  • The founding story of Alltech
  • Mark’s upbringing and preparation to lead a global company.
  • The story of The Planet of Plenty and its founding principles.
  • Progress made to date along with future goals and expectations.
  • Where agriculture is exceeding expectations and where it is falling short.
  • Mark’s prediction of what agriculture will be 50 years from now.
  • A sneak peek into what is in store at the Alltech ONE conference.
  • Mark’s “golden nugget”