By Barbara De Lollis, USA TODAY
SECAUCUS, N.J. — Bob Unanue and his three brothers grew up mostly in suburban New Jersey speaking English instead of their father’s family language, Spanish, and eating their Irish-American mom’s meat and potatoes.
But today, Unanue is as fluent in Spanish as he is in the world of yucca, cactus and chicharrones.
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As CEO of Goya Foods since 2004, the 53-year-old leads the third generation that’s running the privately held company. Talkative and alternately serious and dry-witted, Unanue is most passionate when talking about Goya’s mission and its customers.
“We are the nostalgia,” says Unanue (pronounced oo-NA-new-way), the eldest of six children. “We welcome the immigrants into the country with food.”