Category Archives: Food Industry

Food manufacturing, processing, and cold storage. Seafood, produce, poultry, beef/poultry, meals/meal kits, and food ingredients intended for grocery stores, restaurants, institutions, and consumers. Facilities with freezers, coolers, USDA processing areas, bakeries, floor drains, food safety testing labs, and wastewater interceptors.

Real Mex Food Expands Food Processing Plant

Real Mex Foods expanded food processing plant in Vernon, CaliforniaReal Mex Foods supplies more than 200 restaurants as the distribution branch of Real Mex Restaurants, Cypress, Calif., including Chevy’s, El Torito and Acapulco restaurant concepts located in Arizona, California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington.  In addition, Real Mex Foods has branched into broader frozen foods processing for foodservice, co-pack and retail channels serving clients such as Sysco Distributors, El Pollo Loco, Carl’s Jr.-Green Burrito, Albertson’s and U.S. Foods.

In February, Real Mex closed its 32,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in Santa Fe Springs, Calif., and moved into a 100,000-square-foot space in Vernon, California. The city of Vernon and a developer came to us and proposed a deal where we got a 100,000-square-foot building retrofitted to a state-of-the-art USDA manufacturing plant, Angulo explains.  It was an opportunistic deal.   They got us into 100,000 square feet at the cost that we would have gotten a build-to-suit 65,000-square-foot building.

Food safety also was a major priority for Real Mex in building out the new plant. The company built an in-house lab and hired a complete quality assurance team. Other food safety precautions include a triple boiler system, floor foamers, centralized sanitation system, in-house chlorination system for vegetables and a full quality assurance staff.

The developer invested $10 million in the build out, while Real Mex spent about $4 million on equipment. The completely refurbished plant quadrupled the company’s previous capacity and allowed it to more than double the number of kettles, tumble chillers and blast freezers.

Major Bakery Closing Locations – Reducing Food Processing Footprint

Interstate Bakeries Hostess Bakery

Interstate Bakeries Corp., the maker of the iconic Wonder Bread and other baked goods, said Tuesday it will no longer make or sell bread in Southern Califonia, closing its bakeries in San Diego, Los Angeles, Pomona and Glendale.

The San Diego bakery employs about 80 workers and makes buns and rolls under the Millwood brand. Interstate also said it will close 17 distribution centers and 19 outlet stores, including five locations in San Diego County. In total, some 1,300 workers will be affected throughout Southern California. The company plans to deliver bread products until Oct. 20. Other brands affected include Home Pride Bread, Baker’s Inn and Roman Meal.

IBC, which also makes Ding Dongs and Twinkies, said it plans to continue selling its line of Hostess and Dolly Madison snack cakes in the area.

The closing of the company’s bread operations in Southern California comes as IBC continues to struggle to improve its business, which has been hurt by declining sales and higher costs. The Kansas City company filed for bankruptcy in 2004. For the fiscal year ended June 2, IBC reported a net loss of $128.5 million on sales of $2.92 billion.

Craig Jung, chief executive of IBC, said the decision was difficult but necessary as the Southern California bread business continued to be a drag on the company. Among the competitive pressures, he said, were the growth of low-cost, non-union rivals as well as changing consumers demands. Compounding the problem, Jung added, was the high cost of doing business in California including what he called the “excessive” workers’ compensation insurance costs and a confrontational relationship with one of the company’s main unions.

New Meat Processing Facility at Cal Poly

The J and G Lau Family Meat Processing Center is a state-of-the-art facility located on the Cal Poly campus in the heart of one of the most beautiful cities in California – San Luis Obispo. From harvesting to packaging, this over 13,500 sq. foot center will enable all stages of meat processing in the safest possible environment. Beyond the ordinary classroom, students will experience their education in this state-of-the-art Meat Processing Center that is as technologically advanced as the professional world they will enter. Intended as a space where the lines are blurred between industry and education, the Meat Processing Center will allow companies to utilize test kitchens for product development alongside Cal Poly students and faculty. With this kind of vision, Cal Poly graduates will enter their professions as leaders, innovators and experienced problem solvers.

With the meat industry constantly emerging, such an advanced facility is vital to preparing our future leaders. This is your opportunity to contribute to one of the finest meat processing centers and help guarantee a place where past principles and modern ideas will join forces to improve education and raise the bar of meat industry standards.

Los Angeles Downtown Industrial District

The Los Angeles Downtown Industrial District (LADID) covers 44 blocks, a district with boundaries roughly between Third (on the north) and Eighth and Olympic (on the south), San Pedro (on the west) and Alameda (on the east) Streets. Established as a Business Improvement District (BID), this manufacturing and wholesale District is comprised of mostly seafood, fresh and frozen produce, cold storage and other food related services.  Over 600 properties lie within the LADID boundaries. It encompasses a 36 block district between Fourth (on the north) and Eighth (on the south) Streets, San Pedro (on the west) and Alameda (on the east) Streets.

The District is the hub of the food chain in Southern California and hosts the Los Angeles Wholesale Produce Market, which has 550,000 sq. ft. on 30 acres. It is the second largest produce market in the United States generating annual revenues of $2 billion.  The historic Fisherman’s Outlet is just one of several great restaurants that attract thousands of customers daily.  Dozens of garment and printing businesses also thrive in the district.


Top Meat Companies

Of the top 100 nationwide meat companies in terms of sales, the following are from California: Harris Ranch Beef Co; Superior Farms; United Food Group; Bridgford Foods; King Meats Inc; Central Valley Meat Co; White Apron Meats; Don Miguel Mexican Foods Inc; Custom Food Products Inc; and First Class Foods Inc.

These companies deal in bacon, deli meat, fresh and frozen beef, ground beef, ham, hot dogs, pork, prepared foods and sausage.  Also noteworthy, the following food companies are largest in the respective category.  Oscar mayer – bacon, hot dogs and deli meat.  Stouffer’s – prepared dinners.  Johnsonville – breakfast sausage. Hormel Black Label – ham.

Other highlights.  Consumers continued to gravitate towards kosher dogs such as Hebrew National.  Most ground beef goes to burgers.  Japan is the #1 buyer of American pork.