03/04/2013 11:34 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Bernardo Hernandez, Zagat Managing Director, Named Most Influential Person In America's Food Industry

The list of the most influential people in America’s food industry is out and at the top is Spaniard Bernardo Hernandez.

Hernandez is Zagat’s managing director and Google’s director of product management. Zagat was acquired by Google in 2011, giving the online dining review site massive appeal.

The top 50 list includes producers of food, distributors, chefs and food industry techies like Hernandez.

Colman Andrews, The Daily Meal’s editorial director, said the number one choices may surprise readers because, “people get their information about food today primarily… from the internet.”

“And who owns the internet,” asks Andrews. “This little company out in California called Google.”

The number one slot of the most influential people in America’s food industry was evenly weighted between two high-powered Google executives.

Jack Manzel, Google’s product managing director, is the man behind Google’s search algorithms. Bernardo Hernandez is the man behind the easily searchable restaurants that pull up in a Google search and give readers restaurant reviews, rates restaurants with a score from 1-30 and offers them an interactive Google map, with photos and street directions.

Google is the first place people go to find information about food, said Andrews.

The criteria behind the most influential people in America’s food industry is based on this philosophy: Who influences what we eat, where we eat, how we eat and think about food?

The list of most powerful people in the American food industry was compiled by The Daily Meal for the third consecutive year.

Another Hispanic on the list is chef restauranteur Jose Andres at No. 18. And in regards to how influential the tech industry has been on the food industry, the Daily Meal included Instagram and Pinterest founders in No. 20 and No. 8 rankings, respectively.

Hugh Grant is also on the list. Not the actor Hugh Grant, but the face behind a company that will make some foodies and activists cringe. He’s the chairman and president of Monsanto, and he’s the second most influential person in America’s food industry.

Tech entrepreneurs make list of most influential in America’s food industry

Back to Hernandez, the most influential person and Hispanic in America’s food industry, well, he was named by El Mundo, for seven consecutive years, one of the 25 most influential Spaniards on the Internet.

The tech entrepreneur started his ventures in Spain, having invested in,, and in a social network Tuenti, well-known in Spain. He joined Google in 2005, working in Madrid as their product marketing manager. He later moved to California and went up the ranks from worldwide director of marketing for Google Maps and Google Earth, to worldwide director of marketing and consumer products, to his position today as managing director.

Here’s Bernardo Hernandez speaking on the importance of technology and the internet in today’s world. It is in Spanish with English subtitles.

Originally published on VOXXI as Latino No. 1 in most influential people in America’s food industry



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