Our Local Partners

Consumers are embracing innovation in food and food experiences like never before, and their evolving tastes are creating a landscape in which local, sustainable, and higher quality foods will thrive. We are proud to connect you with local vendors, giving you countless opportunities to buy better and buy local.

Appetizers

Curdtown Cheese Curds
Buffalo, MN

Established: 2011

Mission: To have a constant focus towards the satisfaction of our customers. To provide exceptional products with attentive, timely, and personalized service. To operate with passion, energy, and integrity always.

Popular Products: Curdtown Deep Fried Cheese Curds, original and seasoned.

Fun Fact: Curdtown was founded by a native Wisconsinite on a mission to create the highest quality and tastiest fried cheese curd on the market.


Kaufhold’s Kurds
Ellsworth, WI

General Manager Renee Kaufhold

Established: 1995

Mission: Our company mission and goal is to provide our customers and consumers with a premium and consistently flavorful, all-natural, hand-breaded Wisconsin cheese curd, while maintaining and providing excellent service, values and dedication from our family owned and operated staff.

Popular Products: Hand Breaded Wisconsin Cheese Curds

Fun Facts: All of our products are very lightly hand breaded, no machines! We use lots of fresh ingredients, including whole eggs, fresh milk, whole garlic cloves, fresh jalapenos, fresh habaneros, and fresh onion!


Bakery

Alive & Kickin’ Pizza Crust
Green Bay, WI and Prior Lake, MN

Established: 1989

Mission: We make great crusts for the top pizza brands throughout North America.

Popular Products: Our Dough Balls and Par Baked Pizza Crusts

Fun Fact: We have made over 1 billion crusts and dough balls since 2000.


Catallia Mexican Foods, LLC.
Eagan, MN

Established: 2005

Mission: Catallia Mexican Foods is committed to producing a premium tortilla in an environment that contributes to the success of our team, customers, business partners, and the community. We will strive to exceed expectations in all that we do and will seek to serve as a role model for the minority and civic communities as a company and neighbor.

Popular Products: Flour and corn tortillas, and flavored wraps

Fun Fact: Catallia is a minority owned and family operated business.

Why did you start your business? Over 33 years ago, Catallia’s founders Cathy Cruz Gooch and her husband Harold Gooch recognized the need for authentic tortillas in the Midwest marketplace. Tortillas were always a staple bread in Cathy’s culture, growing up in a large Mexican family in St. Paul, Minnesota. As Mexican food and culture continued to grow in popularity, Cathy and Harold made it their passion to produce an authentic, family tortilla recipe for all Midwest families to enjoy at home and at restaurants in their communities.


Chef Robert’s Gourmet Foods
Breezy Point, MN

Established: 1985

Mission: To have our product recognized as one of the most popular and appetizing breadings on the market.

Popular Products: Chef Robert’s original mix

Fun Fact: The Landing restaurant on Lake Alexander was one of the first places that the Chef Roberts breading mix was introduced to in Minnesota.

Why did you start your business? I purchased this business when it was fairly new because I used the product and thought it was the best product on the market.


Franklin Street Bakery
Minneapolis, MN

Established: 1994

Mission: To exceed customer expectations by crafting baked goods of unsurpassed quality within a culture of professional trust, respect and integrity.

Popular Products: Egg Hamburger Buns, Stadium Hamburger Buns, Brioche Buns, Sliced bread varieties, Ciabatta, Focaccia, Dinner Rolls, Hoagies and Baguettes.

Fun Fact: Our bakery products are enjoyed by customers in eighteen states, but Minnesota is home and we truly value the relationships we have developed with our home state customers.


Great Lakes Bakery
Superior, WI

Established: 2013

Mission: Our mission is to provide products that will delight our customers and provide service that will exceed their expectations.

Popular Products: Bagels

Fun Fact: Due to our water source (Lake Superior) we have warm our water to be able to activate our dough.


Great Northern Baking Company
Minneapolis, MN

Established: 1983

Mission: To strive to be the cleanest labeled and best K-12 bakery serving the needs of all levels of schools and universities.

Popular Products: Whole grain school items snack breads, cookies, muffins and Brekkies and everything is produced in a peanut and tree nut free facility.

Fun Fact: Did you know Brekkie is an Australian term for nutritious breakfast.

Why did you start your business? To provide nutritious baked goods to the K-12 industry in a peanut and tree nut-free facility.


Nuthouse Breads
Webster, WI

Established: 2008

Mission: To create original, high quality, nourishing foods that make people feel good.

Popular Products: We started with two flavors of artisan bread that grew to over 40, added granola (14 flavors), followed by pumpkin bread (an old family recipe). The products that started it all remain the most popular: Cranberry Walnut Bread and Cranberry Wild Rice Bread.

Fun Fact: We are a small, family run operation that works hard to deliver big numbers from small batches. In the summer season, we hand form and bake over 1,500 loaves of artisan bread per week, plus granola and quick breads.


Pan O Gold Baking Co.
St Cloud, MN

Established: 1910

Mission: To put out quality product at a competitive price

Popular Products: Dinner Rolls, Artisan Style Hamburger buns, over-size Vienna breads.

Fun Fact: Pan O Gold is a family owned company in their 3rd generation.


Rise Baking Company
Minneapolis, MN

Established: 2013

Mission: The joy of cookies, bars and breads have always brought people together. Rise Baking Company’s divisions, Best Maid and New French Bakery, focus on the future of those traditions so we can keep you coming back.

Popular Products: Best Maid – Chocolate Chip 3oz Grab ‘n’ Go Cookie, Individually Wrapped Peanut Butter Crispy Bar, Individually Wrapped Marshmallow Crispy Bar, Chocolate Chip 1.5oz Frozen Cookie Dough

New French Bakery- French Baguette, Ciabatta

Fun Fact: Last year alone, Rise Baking Company baked over 120 million cookies at our Best Maid facility in River Falls, WI. That’s enough cookies to build a trail from River Falls to Rome, Italy and still have extra left over for a snack!


Valley’s Own Bakehouse
Burnsville, MN

Established: 2011

Mission: We make products that everyone at the table will enjoy – regardless of their dietary needs.

Popular Products: Brownie, Banana Bread, Cinnamon Muffin

Fun Fact: Our certified Gluten-Free products are made from family recipes, hand-crafted and made with natural, no-GMO indgredients.

Why did you start your business? To fill the need for quality, good tasting gluten free products.


Beverages

Citrus Systems Inc.
Hopkins, MN

Established: 1985

Mission: “We provide a reliable supply of consistent, top quality beverages to our customers.“

Popular Products: 4oz and 6oz Citrus Sun portion cups, 100% Juice Concentrates and 100% Juice Ready to Drink beverages

Fun Fact: In 2020 Citrus Systems is celebrating 35 years in business.

Why did you start your business? Presented with a unique opportunity to get involved with a revolutionary new package of fruit juices using bag in box. Tom Boehland set out in 1985 to take this concept to the food service marketplace.


Connolly’s Tom and Jerry, LLC.
Superior WI

Established: 1949

Mission: To provide a locally made Tom and Jerry batter, a holiday tradition that everyone loves when spending time with friends and family!

Popular Product: Tom and Jerry Batter

Fun Fact: The brand has been around since 1949

Why did you start your business? To keep the brand local, and to spend time working with friends and family!


Duluth Coffee Company
Duluth, MN

Established: 2011

Mission: The Duluth Coffee Company sources, roasts and crafts coffee with integrity and intentionality. We strive to evolve the community of coffee through accessibility and education. Coffee is our vessel for improving the lives of everyone along the path from origin to cup.

Popular Products: Roasted Coffee

Fun Fact: Duluth Coffee Company travels to the origin to visit the producers that grow the coffee.

Why did you start your business? Coffee is our passion and we wanted to create a company where we could continue to help producers by purchasing coffee more responsibly and sustainably.


European Roasterie, Inc
Le Center, MN

Established: 1992

Mission: Coffee is a Craft. Custom roasted Fresh coffees for the delight of our customers

Popular Products: Velvet Hammer Blend, Jamaican Me Crazy, Highlander Grog, Roaster’s Select

Fun Fact: It takes an average of 3632 green coffee beans to make a pound.


Mike and Jen’s Hot Cocoa
Duluth, MN

Established: 2012

Mission: Providing the highest quality products to keep people warm.

Popular Products: Mike and Jen’s Hot Cocoa

Fun Fact: Mike and Jen’s is named after my two children, Mike and Jen.

Why did you start your business? Mike and Jen’s Hot Cocoa was started as a hobby because my daughter Jen loves hot cocoa. I wanted to create a mix without all the chemicals and additives. I told her we were going to try to make our own mix, and that we were going to make the best in the world. One year later, and after trying nearly 70 cocoa powders from various sources, we were finally happy with our official recipe. Being able to share that mix with people from all over has been a beautiful gift.


Center of the Plate

Bodin Fisheries
Bayfield, WI

Established: 1889

Mission: Local. Fresh. Sustainable.

Popular Products: Fresh, Frozen and Smoked Lake Superior Trout and Whitefish

Fun Fact: There is more fish spawning area in the Apostle Islands than the rest of Lake Superior combined.

Why did you start your business? Great Grandpa started fishing to supplement the income he made being a carpenter when he came over from Sweden.


Brakebush
Westfield, WI

Established: 1925

Mission: To provide, quality products and services at competitive prices that meet or exceed our customers expectations.

Popular Products: Fully Cooked Bone In and Boneless wings, Tenderloins, Chicken Fillets, both IQF and fully cooked. New items Fully Cooked Chicken Burgers and Chicken sausage topping

Fun Fact: Neither of the original brothers finished grade school

Why did you start your business? Farming in the 1920’s were tough and Brakebush saw a need to help farmers get their crops to market, so they bought a truck and started to haul everything from eggs to cattle to market.


Ferndale Market
Cannon Falls, MN

Established: 2008

Mission: For three generations, our family has continued to grow free-range, antibiotic-free turkeys, and we are proud to sustain the farming tradition. Together with our network of fellow independent farmers, we provide a full line of distinctive ready-to-cook and ready-to-eat turkey products for retail and foodservice, all carrying our local, natural claims.

Popular Products: Uncured Boneless Smoked Turkey Breast, Ground Turkey, Turkey Breast Roast, holiday whole turkeys

Fun Fact: Our farm is named for our founders, Fern and Dale Peterson, who got us started in 1939.

Why did you start your business? We believe in the way we continue to grow our turkeys, outdoors and without antibiotics, and are proud to remain an independent, family farm.


Hormel

Hormel
Austin, MN

Established: 1891

Mission: Inspired People. Inspired Food. We strive to bring more to the table for customers, employees, consumers, shareholders and the communities where we live and work.

Popular Lines: Austin Blues, Cafe H, Fontanini, Fire Braised Meats, SPAM

Fun Fact: There are 12.8 cans of SPAM products eaten every second.


Morey’s Seafood International LLC
Motley, MN, and Plymouth, MN

Established: 1935

Mission: To focus our knowledge, experience and integrity as a seafood industry leader for nearly a century, to be the leading supplier of high quality, sustainable and wholesome products to the customers that we are privileged to supply.

Popular Products: Fresh and Frozen Seafood items and a wide variety of Morey’s branded seafood products

Fun Fact: Our company was started when a truck loaded with frozen fish broke down by Ed Morey’s property. Ed traded a load of corn for the fish–smoked the fish, and Morey’s began!


Rancher’s Legacy Meat Co.
Vadnais Heights, MN

Established: 2010

Mission: To be an innovative and trusted provider of high quality beef and pork products committed to the highest level of food safety, integrity of product specifications, and outstanding customer service.

Popular Products: Beef: Specialty Craft Burgers, Premium Burgers, Bulk Grind, Cut Steaks and Chops plus a selection of specialty proteins.

Fun Fact: Rancher’s ground more than 4,500 tons of beef in 2016. Rancher’s products are shipped to approximately 25 US states and internationally into approximately 15 different countries.


Olsen Fish Company
Minneapolis, MN

Established: 1910

Mission: Preserving The Tradition of Quality Herring and Lutefisk Since 1910

Popular Products: Pickled Herring, Lutefisk, Lefse, Lingonberries, Salted Cod and Dried Cod

Fun Fact: We are the largest producer of lutefisk in North America.


Condiments

Anderson’s Maple Syrup, Inc.
Cumberland, WI

Established:1928

Mission: Anderson’s Maple Syrup, Inc. values the trust customers put in us to provide the highest quality Pure Maple Syrup. It is our goal to earn that trust in all we do.

Popular Products: Pure Maple Syrup

Fun Fact: The Anderson family is the only maple syrup producer in Wisconsin to have had each generation win the “Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer of the Year” award, the 4th generation is starting and will hopefully continue the tradition.

Why did you start your business? I continued the business that my father and grandfather started, mainly because I could see the connections to the farmers and the customer that is often time so far removed that their is no connection at all. We are positioned to help the consumer understand the greatness of Pure Maple Syrup, and also help the producer make better syrup. I enjoy the conversation and friendship of many maple producers and love being an important part of their business.


Jimmy’s Salad Dressings & Dips
Stewartville, MN

Established: 1972

Mission: Jimmy’s Salad Dressings & Dips takes pride in providing safe and high quality restaurant and retail products.

Popular Products: Jimmy’s Cole Slaw, Chunky Blue Cheese, Ranch, Pineapple Cole Slaw, French and Parmesan Dressings

Fun Fact: Jimmy’s is a family-owned business located in Minnesota!

Why did you start your business? “Prior to opening Jimmy’s, my dad (Jimmy) owned a local restaurant called The Fish House. He wasn’t pleased with the salad dressings available commercially so my dad, being the great recipe maker, started creating his own recipes at the restaurant. Soon customers were requesting product to buy and take home. After a time, I spoke with local grocery store managers and saw this as an opportunity to sell to restaurants and grocery stores.” Tom Slightam, President


Minnestalgia Foods
McGregor, MN

Established: 1990

Mission: To provide memories of Minnesota through the products of our heritage.

Popular Products: Wild Rice and Wild Rice Flour, Berry Jams, Jellies, Syrups

Fun Fact: In its 30 years, Minnestalgia has produced over a million jars of jams, jellies and syrups using over 700,000 pounds of locally sourced berries and 600,000 pounds of locally sourced sugar. Our wild rice is also grown by a local 4th generation family. With these ingredients we produce the products of our heritage and the nostalgic memories of Minnesota.

Why did you start your business? We grew up in families producing their own homemade breads, jams, maple syrup, produce from the garden and crops from the fields. This heritage has always tied us to our past generations and we wanted to produce those same nostalgic products to share with others.


Spirit Creek Farm
Cornucopia, WI

Established: 2007

Mission: Spirit Creek Farm makes and provides local, organic, probiotic rich fermented vegetables (sauerkrauts, kim chi and more) to customers in the Midwest of the United States of America.

Popular Products: Kim Chi, Purple Sauerkraut, Curtido,

Fun Fact: Our fork lift is over 50 years old and still starts when it is 0 degrees out.

Why did you start your business? “To provide locally grown food to our community and beyond that can be eaten year round.” – Jennifer
“We wanted to do something we could feel good about.” – Andrew


Smude Enterprises LLC
Pierz, MN

Established: 2009

Mission: To create the highest quality sunflower oil products that promote health and convenience for busy consumers.

Popular Products: Smude’s Cold Pressed Sunflower Oil, Smude’s Microwave Popcorn

Fun Fact: Popcorn kernels can pop up to 3 feet in the air!

Why did you start your business? Tom and Jenni Smude started the company in 2009 when they were looking for a new crop to grow for cattle feed after 2 consecutive years of drought. They settled on sunflowers. They are drought resistant and the meal is an excellent feed source for cattle. First, they were selling the oil off in bulk until they realized that their unique pressing method was creating a healthier cooking oil than what was available in the market, so they started bottling and selling it under the Smude brand name.


Dairy

Burnett Dairy Cooperative
Grantsburg, WI

Established: 1896

Mission: Profitable growth through superior quality, customer service, commitment and innovative solutions.

Popular Products: Whole Milk and Part Skim Mozzarella Loaves and Shred.

Fun Fact: Our master cheesemaker’s name is Bruce Willis. He says he is the “original” Bruce Willis. Even better, his middle name is Wayne – so he is Bruce Wayne (Batman) and Bruce Willis (Die Hard).


Dean Foods
Woodbury, MN

Established: 1963

Mission: More than 80 years ago, Dean Foods was born in America’s heartland. Since then, the world has changed beyond belief. But from our first milk delivery to life in the digital age, we’ve maintained a refreshingly simple passion: bringing nutritious, wholesome food and beverages to every occasion.

Popular Products: Milk

Fun Fact: We take around 10% of the U.S. milk supply and turn it into food and beverages that fuel better lives – nutritious, wholesome, and flavorful at the same time.


Ellsworth Cooperative Creamery
Ellsworth, WI

Established: 1910

Mission: Provide support and stability to our 325 family dairy farms.

Popular Products: Natural White Cheddar Cheese Curds

Fun Fact: The ECC produces roughly 160,000 pounds of cheese curds daily.


Emmi Roth
Monroe, WI

Established: 1991

Mission: Our mission is to create the best cheese moments for our employees, customers and consumers. The best cheese moments are Emmi Roth moments.

Popular Products: Grand Cru

Fun Fact: Grand Cru is a domestic gruyere made in Copper Vats

Why did you start your business? To produce European style cheese with Wisconsin milk.


Land O’Lakes
Shoreview, MN

Established: 1921

Mission: Feeding Human Progress

Popular Products: 6/5 lb Extra Melt Loaf, 6/5 lb Queso Bravo Cheese Dip, 6/5 lb. Golden Velvet Loaf, 6/5 lb. Extra Melt Cheese Sauce

Fun Fact: Land O’Lakes is a farmer-owned cooperative.


Winona Foods, INC.
Green Bay, WI

Established: 1993

Mission: Winona Foods is committed to being the industry leader by providing our customers exceptional solutions, service, quality and value.

Popular Products: Cheese Shreds, Slices, Sauces and Dips

Fun Fact: There are more than 2000 varieties of cheese


Eggs

Locally Laid Egg Company
Wrenshall, MN

Established: 2012

Mission: We believe that the best quality eggs are produced locally by hens on pasture.

Popular Products: Shell eggs

Fun Fact: You don’t need a rooster for a hen to lay eggs!

Why did you start your business? A desire to see birds on pasture…. along with a midlife crisis 🙂


Sparboe Companies
Litchfield, MN

Established: 1954

Mission: Feeding Families, Enriching Lives

Popular Products: All Varieties of Shell Eggs

Fun Fact: You can tell what color egg a hen will lay by the color of the feathers around the ear hole of the hen. Hens that have brown feathers all over but white feathers by their ears will produce white eggs. If they have brown feathers by the ear, they will produce brown eggs.


Michael Foods
Minnetonka, MN

Established: 1908

Mission: Our mission is to provide fresh, delicious and convenient food solutions that generate exceptional experiences for our customers and consumers, while delivering profitable, sustainable growth for our company.

Popular Products: Eggs, Potatoes, Sausage, Gravy, Mac-N-Cheese

Fun Fact: Michael Foods breaks approximately 1 out of every 6 eggs in the United States.


Frozen

JonnyPops
St. Louis Park, MN

Established: 2012

Mission: Make A Better Pop, for a Better World

Popular Products: Strawberries & Cream Smoothie-on-a-Stick and Triple-Berry Smoothie-on-a-Stick

Fun Fact: Real fruit is the #1 ingredient in all JonnyPops fruit flavors!

Why did you start your business? We wanted to honor our friend and namesake Jonathan by making delicious frozen treats that spread kindness and made our communities a better place. A Better Pop, for a Better World.


Kemps, LLC
St. Paul, MN

Established: 1914

Mission: We passionately transform nature’s pure milk into great products every day.

Popular Products: Ice Cream, Frozen novelty treats

Fun Fact: Kemps will be donating 500,000 1/2 pints of milk to local food shelves in 2020.


mixmi brands
Ramsey, MN

Established: 2011

Mission: To make great tasting food that is healthier for you!

Popular Products: mixmi froyo – a clean label, good source of prebiotic fiber, probiotic, nut free and gluten free froyo.

Fun Fact: Healthy CAN taste good!

Why did you start your business? When our kids were in middle school, we saw the food choices they had in the cafeteria. We knew there could be better options. Therefore, we decided to create better tasting, healthier options for students. Plus, we love food! What better business is there?


Porsena’s Pizza – Randy’s Foods
Faribault, MN

Established: 1955

Mission: Creating “custom pizzas worth craving.”

Popular Products: The entire Porsena’s line!

Fun Fact: We make over 350 different types of pizzas!


Non Foods

National Checking Company (NCCO)
Saint Paul, MN

Established: 1905

Mission: NCCO specializes in providing innovative products and services to the foodservice industry. We pride ourselves on helping your business thrive by enhancing customer satisfaction, improving profitability and providing relevant solutions to everyday foodservice problems.

Popular Products: Date Code Genie Automated Labeling Systems, DateIt™ Food Safety Labels, Register Rolls, Guest Checks, SecureIt™ Tamper-Evident Labels

Fun Fact: In the 1920’s, NCCO invented the original GuestCheck™, an icon of American restaurant and dining history.

Why did you start your business? To provide not just product solutions for foodservice operations, but to do so with integrity and the best service possible.


Sunburst Chemicals
Minneapolis, MN

Established: 1922

Mission: Sunburst provides One-Touch Cleaning® programs that ensure quality results while enhancing your bottom line. We are dedicated to making your job easier and providing you with better alternatives.

Popular Products: Challenge, Score, Solid Performance

Fun Fact: Sunburst has been in business for almost 100 years!


Produce

BIX Produce Company
St. Paul, MN

Established: 1930

Mission: For more than 80 years, we’ve been fulfilling the same promise: To deliver the highest-quality produce and unmatched service every step of the way for each of our customers.

Popular Products: : BIX has been a category leader in pre-cut produce for more than 30 years. Our vast variety of Fresh Cut fruits and vegetables can drive menu quality and kitchen efficiency to help protect your bottom line. Top Sellers are the torn romaine, chunk fruit blend, and the veg mix mirepoix.

Fun Fact: Our new facility has been transformed from a Slumberland warehouse to a multi faceted warehouse with a freezer section, produce cooler and production facility. Our old warehouse can fit in our new warehouse with tons of room to spare.


Forest Mushrooms, Inc.
Saint Joseph, MN

Established: 1985

Mission: Forest Mushrooms is a 24/7, year round controlled-environment growing operation, and relies on the dedication of our skilled employees to keep the farm running. By providing permanent positions with livable wages and full health benefits, the company has provided sustainable career-track rural jobs for its employees and family members, while providing the freshest and highest quality specialty mushrooms available in Minnesota.

Popular Products: Specialty Mushrooms, fresh and dried, including Oyster, Shiitake, Portabella, Crimini, and all cultivated and wild-harvested specialty mushrooms, including certified organic mushrooms.

Fun Fact: Our primary growing location was originally built in the 1930’s as a hog operation for St. John’s Abbey and University in Collegeville, MN!

Why did you start your business? We recognized that there was starting to be some demand for specialty mushrooms in 1985, and since there were no growers in the Upper Midwest, we were able to get in on the ground floor and fill a niche that was just opening. This created an opportunity to establish a farm without the requirement of obtaining large acreage, since mushroom growing is an intensive process that is done completely indoors in a controlled environment.


Nuto Farm Supply, Inc. / Kitchen Kleen
Rice Lake, WI

Established: 1929

Mission: To provide our customers with a quality Russet Burbank Kitchen Kleen Potato

Popular Products: Russet Burbank Kitchen Kleen Potato

Fun Fact: In the last 5 years, for every acre of potatoes we have planted, we also planted approximately 415 trees on unused edges of our potato fields for the purpose of improving the environment. That is over 250,000 trees!

Why did you start your business? My great grandfather started this business during the Great Depression and we are carrying on his tradition of providing a quality potato to our customers.


Roland Marketing Inc.
Fridley, MN

Established: 1971

Mission: To provide our customers with the best quality products available year round!

Popular Products: Potatoes & Onions

Fun Fact: In October 1995, the potato became the first vegetable to be grown in space. NASA and the University of Wisconsin, Madison, created the technology with the goal of feeding astronauts on long space voyages, and eventually, feeding future space colonies.


Sunset Orchard / Richland Hills Farms
Richland Center, WI

Established: 1999

Mission: To produce the best quality product at the highest level of food safety.

Popular Products: Fresh Sliced Apples

Fun Fact: Family owned and operated business and apple orchard.


Snacks

General Mills
Golden Valley, MN

Established: 1866

Mission: Making Food People Love

Popular Products: Nature Valley Bars, Yoplait Yogurt, Pillsbury, Cheerios, Old El Paso

Fun Fact: General Mills engineers created the black box used in airplanes.


Sides

Captain Ken’s Food, Inc.
St Paul, MN

Established: 1967

Mission: Make delicious tasting recipes, which offer customers a dining experience that they will remember and want to repeat often, following the same tradition and commitment to quality that Captain Ken’s founder, Ken Freiberg, started over 50 years ago.

Popular Products: The most famous of course is Captain Ken’s Original Recipe Oven-Baked Beans with Bacon. Another is Captain Ken’s Firehouse Chili with Beans (Midwest mild-seasoning), which is accompanied by other popular Captain Ken’s recipes like Coney Hot Dog Topping, Cheesy Hashbrowns, and Chicken Pot Pie Filling.

Fun Fact: Captain Ken’s Foods was founded in 1967 by Ken Freiberg, a Captain in the St. Paul, MN Fire Department. Ken served in the fire department for 23 years before taking “early” retirement at the age of 55 to start his business.


Mrs Gerry’s Kitchen
Albert Lea, MN

Established: 1973

Mission: For over four decades, Mrs. Gerry’s has continued to bring you the best salads and side dishes: premium ingredients handled with premium care, just as you would in your own kitchen. From our locally grown potatoes, to our individually sliced peppers, to our hand-tossed salads, we take pride in every ingredient, every process, and every container that leaves our facility and ends up on your dinner table.

Popular Products: Original Potato Salad, Premium Mac n Cheese, Sweet Pepper Coleslaw, Premium Mashed Potatoes

Fun Fact: Local ingredients are used whenever possible. In fact, 90% of the potatoes used for the potato salads are grown within 15 miles of the Albert Lea plant. Food safety and employee safety are top priorities.

Why did you start your business? Gerry Vogt is the founder of the company, alongside her husband Jerry. Gerry and Jerry (better known to locals as “The Gerry’s”) founded the company four decades ago, in support of Jerry’s sales position selling meats to grocery stores. He wanted to enhance his product offering by not only selling the main dish, but providing a full meal to his clients: meat and salads. Today, the Gerry’s are still a major part of the salads and sides organization which has grown to over 200,000 square feet, but continues to operate on a strong foundation of faith, family and quality.