The latest news from NWFPA members and events concerning the food processing industry in the Northwest.

Connie Kirby earns Distinguished Service Award

Connie Kirby WebConnie Kirby Earns Food Safety Magazine Distinguished Service Award

Food Safety Magazine has announced this year’s winner of their prestigious Distinguished Service Award. It is none other than our very own Connie Kirby! The award will be presented on Tuesday, July 28 at the Awards Reception and Banquet at the International Association for Food Protection Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon.

The Food Safety Magazine Distinguished Service Award honors individuals who best exemplify the characteristics of the dedicated food safety professional. The honored are recognized by members of the profession for their collective work in promoting and advancing science-based solutions for food safety issues. No one better exemplifies these award qualifications than Connie.


Her outstanding commitment to food safety is reflected in her unparalleled contributions past and present to the Northwest food processing community, particularly her impact on food safety leadership, regulatory affairs and communication, as well as advancing the knowledge and expertise of food safety professionals in our region.


I am hoping that many of you will be able to attend. We can help attendees from around the world understand how truly lucky we are to have had Connie working with the association and its members for so many years. I cannot think of anyone more deserving.


International Association for Food Protection Annual Meeting
July 25-28, 2015 in Portland, Oregon
(Awards Reception and Banquet is in the evening of July 28)


Sustainability Micro Case Studies II: Submit your story

Micro Case Studies Book Cover

Sustainable business practices are not a trend or fad; they are part of successful business growth and management. Food processing companies and their suppliers are adopting sustainable business models.

Many companies have invested in projects, both large and small, to become more sustainable, yet this work is practically unknown and unrecognized by the public, customers, and regulatory and policy decision-makers. The food processing industry is quite modest about its accomplishments and seldom talks about the actions of the industry and its suppliers of equipment, services and resources. Yet these actions have benefited our communities, our workers and the environment. The industry cares and is committed to making a difference. Unfortunately, many members of the public, customers, legislators and regulators assume that if companies have not communicated what they are doing to become more sustainable, they are not doing anything.



Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal hires new Director of Human Resources

“Everyone talks about the weather but no one ever does anything about it.”
-Mark Twain


Media contact:
Kim Beeler | 503.908.0808

Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal hires director of human resources

TUALATIN, OR – (April 15, 2015) – Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal, a leading commercial roofing company in Oregon, welcomes a new Director of Human Resources (HR) Kristin Buckner.

Buckner joins the Tualatin-based company with more than 20 years of HR experience in a variety of industries, including manufacturing, medical and high technology. She is responsible for the Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal’s ongoing strategic planning efforts.

President Mark Carpenter said he is excited to have a seasoned professional leading the HR Department. “Buckner is a welcome addition to our growing staff and company,” he said. “I am confident that she will help lead our strategic plans in the New Year, which includes the recent purchase of 77-year-old Long Beach Roofing in California.”

Most recently, Buckner was human resources manager at Mitchell Lewis and Staver. She earned her Professional in Human Resources certification in 2008 and she received a Bachelor of Science in Business Management (B.S.B.M) from the University of Phoenix.

About Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal:
Since 1996, Columbia Construction Services, Inc., d.b.a. Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal, has operated as a specialty contractor with 55 full-time employees. Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal focuses its services on commercial roofing, roof maintenance (Columbia Roof Advantage), sheet metal fabrication and installation, steep slope roofing, seismic upgrades and installation, and safety product installation. Safety is one of the company’s core values and it follows strict safety policies in accordance with OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Division). For two consecutive years, Columbia Roofing & Sheet Metal has earned a Carlisle SynTec Systems’ Perfection Award as well as making the list of Portland Business Journal’s Fastest Growing Private Businesses. It operates in the states of Oregon, Washington, California and Idaho. Please visit or call (503) 684-9123, OR; or (253) 236-7474, WA; for more information or follow us at:

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Expo 2016 Early Bird is Open!

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Don't miss out on the great savings of early bird. Join NWFPA at the largest regional food manufacturing trade show in North America on January 11 - 13, 2016.

Early bird opens today, April 30th and will run through June 15th or until 250 booths are reserved. Last year early bird ended after only 29 days, so don't miss out. Download your application here and view the floor map at

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A & B Packing Equipment Acquires Lakewood Process Machinery



A&B Packing Equipment, Inc. is pleased to announce that the product lines of Lakewood Process Machinery are now part of the A&B line of equipment effective March 6, 2015.

This acquisition represents a pooling of the expertise of two major fruit and vegetable equipment manufacturers, and will produce a superior line of packing & processing equipment for the industry.

A&B Packing Equipment, Inc. for the last 20 years has specialized in fresh and process equipment for the small fruit & vegetable industry with a focus on high speed packing equipment for consumer packaging. A&B’s flagship line of equipment is the Evolution series of high speed weigh and fill packing machines, which have the ability to pack clamshells, punnets, bags and boxes all with one machine. “The Evolution has dominated the mainframe fresh packing market for the past five years and continues to grow into other markets and industries worldwide” according to Fred Pieplow, A&B President.

Lakewood Process Machinery has specialized in process industry for a wide variety of products for over 50 years. During this time they have been responsible for many innovations in sizing, de-stemming, conveying, washing and drying of the agricultural and food processing industry.

Both companies are extremely proud of the quality of their equipment, the quality of their personnel, and the quality of their service. “Customers can expect the same focus, the same high quality service and the same team effort that you have come to know” says A&B founder and CEO Bob Williamson. A&B Packing Equipment, Inc. will now be a company of more than 100 employees, with offices in Lawrence, Michigan, Hartford, Michigan, and a presence in Holland, Michigan.

Any questions regarding the resent acquisition please contact Fred Pieplow at 269-539-4700.

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