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John Z Blazevich

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John Blazevich

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Full Name
John Z. Blazevich

Entrepreneur, Executive, Inventor, Philanthropist

John Z. Blazevich is an entrepreneur, executive, inventor and philanthropist. Most notably, he is a seafood executive and former CEO of Contessa Premium Foods, a company he founded in 1984.


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Early life

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Blazevich was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia Herzegovina. His parents immigrated to Southern California in 1958. He holds a B.S. in Finance and Marketing from the University of Southern California.


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Blazevich believes we have a duty to create products that contribute to individual health and nutrition. They should be created with processes that value and protect the environment. He has been quoted, “What really matters to our environment is not what we manufacture, but how we manufacture”. In 1980, Blazevich began his career providing oversight and management for worldwide procurement and sale of various tuna species to leading canneries. During such time he saw an opportunity to bring farm-raised Black tiger shrimp to the US market where this product was relatively unknown.

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Contessa Premium Foods - In 1984, Blazevich founded Contessa Premium Foods in San Pedro, Los Angeles. Over the next three decades Contessa would grow from small importer of seafood to one of the largest, most recognized frozen food companies in the world. With products that include premium quality seafood, highly nutritional convenience meals and gourmet stir fry vegetables. During Blazevich's tenure, he drove Contessa to over 4 billion in sales over 27 years.

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Viva Foods - Currently Blazevich is founder and CEO of Viva Food Group. Viva farms and buys shrimp in Thailand and Vietnam providing a direct source for quality and freshness to the rest of the world marketplace.


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In the 1980s, Blazevich pioneered the concept of frozen convenience meals. Today they represent a major component of the frozen food retail market.


Blazevich holds numerous patents related to food processing, packaging and marketing.

Green Innovation

High quality products with high quality ingredients and a commitment to environmental sustainability is Blazevich’s company's mission. He is committed to the environment and believes we should be good stewards with the finite resources of this planet. His vision and resolve have been demonstrated in numerous projects including the world’s first “green” LEED-certified frozen-food manufacturing plant.

Contessa’s Green Cuisine plant in Los Angeles reduced daily energy use and CO2 emissions by 65% (relative to 1990 Kyoto Protocol baseline standards). Blazevich’s dedication took it a step further, making the plant 100% carbon neutral through the use of offset credits in Biomass energy.

Blazevich has also made numerous appearances on national news shows. He's appeared on CBS News Sunday Morning to discuss his green plant - touted as one of the hot inventions of 2008, the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric and his innovations were chronicled in the New York Times.

Hacienda De La Paz

Blazevich conceived and collaborated with world-renowned, award winning architect Rafael Manzano Martos to construct Hacienda De La Paz.


Blazevich is known for his efforts on the local, national and international levels. Recently, he has been instrumental in multiple projects with Habitat for Humanity, Hurricane Ike relief in Galveston, TX, tsunami relief in Thailand and Indonesia, Hurricane Katrina relief and earthquake relief in Haiti.


John Z. Blazevich Wikipedia

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