To succeed as one of the nation’s largest co-manufacturers, Hearthside Food Solutions needed to secure the trust of its customers. In many ways, earning trust involves focusing on the fundamentals, according to Rich Scalise, Hearthside’s president and CEO.
“Where are you going to win? You are going to win with food safety,” he noted. “You are going to win by having access to capital to invest quickly in a way that helps your customers take costs out. Our goal is on continuous improvement and finding better ways to take costs out of the structure on our customers’ products.”
Hearthside provides capital investment in four ways, according to Mr. Scalise. First, it supports food safety for the megabrands it produces. This year, the company is requiring all of its 12 facilities to attain SQF-3 (Safe Quality Food) certification via the Global Food Safety Initiative.
Second, the company is investing in infrastructure. That not only involves improving its facilities and production lines, but it also requires starting up SAP and other enterprise resource planning efforts to better link and synchronize its operations with its customers.
Third, Hearthside is expanding capacity with multi-million-dollar investments in new bar lines in its Grand Rapids, MI, operations and building onto its snack facility in Michigan City, IN. Last, Hearthside may even invest along with its customers to add new capacity to produce custom-made products.
Hearthside’s name, in fact, is based on the company’s strategic mission. The “hearth,” Mr. Scalise said, came from the bakery’s projected roots. He added that the “side” in Hearthside reinforces its ability to partner alongside the leading food manufacturers of the world. Read More on the Subject: Hearthside Food Solutions: A Class of its Own Filling up the Pipeline Billions of Bars and Still Counting Putting the Pieces Together Victim of its Success