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

Blackthorne Partners Combine to Purchase Hughes Company

Business Executive, Blackthorne Partners
Combine to Purchase Hughes Company
Significant Growth Planned for Food Processing Machinery Manufacturer

Hughes Company, a Columbus, Wis.-based manufacturer and international distributor of stainless steel equipment for the food processing industry, has been acquired by Blackthorne Partners Ltd., and former Trostel, Ltd., executive Ross Lund, who has become president and chief executive officer of the company.
“We have aggressive growth goals for the company, which I know we can achieve based on the company’s existing staff of highly skilled and dedicated employees, our existing manufacturing technology, and the new resources we will bring to the operation,” Lund said. “We will help our customers become even more productive through investments in our people and in technology.”


Seneca Foods Corporation Aquires 50% of Truitt Bros., Inc.

Marion, NY, April 1, 2014 -- Seneca Foods Corporation (the “Company”) (NASDAQ: SENEA, SENEB) and Peter W. Truitt have entered into a Share Purchase Agreement whereas the Company has acquired Peter’s 50% ownership interest in Truitt Bros., Inc., and directly related holdings. The effective date of the transaction is April, 1, 2014. The management of Truitt Bros., Inc. will remain unchanged. The remaining terms of the Share Purchase Agreement are currently not being disclosed.

In addition to the aforementioned Share Purchase Agreement, the Company also entered into an Agreement with David Truitt and other shareholders. This Agreement grants the Company the right to acquire the remaining 50% ownership of Truitt Bros., Inc. at a future point in time.



New Food Resources & Education Food Institute Launched to Unite Food Industry

The Northwest Food Processors Association (NWFPA) proudly announces the launch of the Food Resources & Education Institute (FREDi), an initiative designed to encourage collaboration, increase dialogue and create a platform to unite and educate food processors and food industry professionals around the country.

FREDi was officially unveiled to 4,000 food processors, suppliers, manufacturers and food industry professionals on January 15, 2014, during the Northwest Food Processor’s EXPO and Conference at the Oregon Convention Center.

Founded in 2013, FREDi was created by the Northwest Food Processors Association as a unique, open-source business model providing a resource, both online and off, for food processors and suppliers to connect with colleagues to help expand innovation, increase productivity and grow business. FREDi combines the ease of online resources with the personalization that comes from face-to-face meetings, offering the food industry a unique experience designed specifically for its needs.

“Food Processors are constantly faced with changing government regulations, consumer demands, trends, and new technologies. Add in the challenge of finding a skilled or trained workforce, the constant need to reduce costs and improve productivity, and management of the sheer pace of change – it’s a wonder how companies providing family-wage jobs can survive. With FREDi, there is a better, more efficient way to stay ahead of the game. FREDi improves the availability and quality of information by leveraging the wisdom of professionals in the food industry. Solutions and ideas are discovered much faster and applied with more confidence than before because FREDi sources from a global palate of knowledge. Food professionals can now stay ahead of the game while enjoying their life,” said Dave Zepponi, president of NWFPA. “FREDi serves to unite the industry on a national scale by sharing knowledge, one person at a time.

Through FREDi, employers can monitor their employees’ food safety training progress, push content to specific employees and retain ownership of all documentation, making audits more efficient. Food processors have the ability choose a training method that best works with employee and management schedules while taking cost efficiency into account. Employers can choose between traditional on-site or public training courses or time-efficient online training courses, all of which comply with the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) standards.

Operated in partnership with Succeed Management Solutions, LLC (Succeed), an industry-leading risk management provider with the tools to improve efficiency, reduce risk factors, and protect the overall bottom line, FREDi offers users a range of services including discussion boards, directories, event calendars, a resource library, and a training and compliance center to document workplace safety.

FREDi also has a powerful directory of resource providers and a listing of food processors accessing solutions from around the world. FREDi gives the processor or supplier a place to ask questions or find opportunities, including a jobs board and chat room for professionals. Looking for a pump or packaging materials? FREDi can help. FREDi is based on the concept of sharing knowledge to improve decisions while reducing risk.

“Our industry is constantly evolving, and its members are continuously learning. By creating a community of interest, we can easily and efficiently continue to learn from our colleagues around the globe,” said Zepponi. “By learning how people around the world are improving their processes in the industry, we ultimately improve all food manufacturers willing to share.”


Anniversary Photo

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To celebrate the 100th year anniversary of the NWFPA, a historic photo of members, associates and colleagues was taken on January 12, 2014 at the Centennial Celebration in Portland, Oregon.

Three Northwest Food Processing Leaders Honored With Top Industry Awards

The Northwest Food Processors Association (NWFPA) awarded individual food processing industry leaders with three of the organization's highest honors last week at the Northwest Food Processors EXPO and Conference at the Oregon Convention Center. Each of the annual awards – Key Award, Eagle Award, and Distinguished Service Award -- honor individuals who have displayed exceptional leadership and contributions to the association and the food processing industry overall.

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