JACKSON, MICH. — Dawn Food Products and The R.P.I.A. Group have formed a new partnership under which Dawn Foods will be the prime vendor for the R.P.I.A. (Retail Purchasers in Action). As a result of the collaboration, R.P.I.A. members will be encouraged to use the Dawn Distribution Network as a primary supplier.

The two groups have spent the past two years working together on a range of programs, including new product ideas and marketing initiatives.

“In the last 10 years, R.P.I.A. has become a virtual co-op that empowers its members not only in purchasing power, but also in their intellectual pursuits,” said Paul Caske, vice-president sales- retail and distribution served of Dawn Food Products. “We are excited to work with an organization that can help us enhance the value proposition not only for R.P.I.A. members, but also for the entire baking industry.”

The R.P.I.A. unites more than 80 retail bakeries and enables members to share intellectual property that helps them learn and grow while networking. The group focuses on using its combined buying power in traditional areas of ingredients and packaging as well as insurance services, shipping and software. Members also use various services such as pre-employment evaluation tests to help decrease turnover.

The R.P.I.A. has three levels of membership — Silver, Gold and Platinum — with annual sales of $750,000 to $1 million, $1 million+, and multimillion dollar operations, respectively, with each level requiring services on a different level. More information may be found on the web at www.RPIAUSA.org.