All American Seasonings: Focus on Flavor & Efficiency Through Technology
All American Seasonings' Growth: Focus on Flavor and Efficiency Through Technology
With the slogan, “The bottom line is better flavor for your customers and a better bottom line for you,” the growth of All American Seasonings of Denver, Colorado is not surprising. Founded by Andrew Rodriguez, he was the head of a Cuban family which fled the homeland with Castro’s rise to power in 1963. Mr. Rodriguez started his business very small in 1968, initially relying upon a narrow product line of spices his company developed for local restaurants. As enthusiasm for these products increased, so did the company’s investments in employees, equipment and facilities. For the last decade, All American Seasonings has consistently topped the list of fast growing, minority-owned companies in the Denver area. The company, now headed by Andy Jr., produces over 9 million pounds of product per year and is growing in revenues at a projected rate of 10% per year. All American has recently invested in a brand new production facility with over 40,000 sq. ft. This state-of-the-art plant is capable of producing over 150,000 pounds per day.
Prosperity can, however, exact a toll. Old established ways of doing things, however comfortable, can be overwhelmed with the complexities of managing hundreds of products, thousands of ingredients and corresponding numbers of custom recipes, customers and suppliers. All American upgraded from manual to computer-based systems in the early ‘90s, including an accounting package interfaced with a manufacturing system on DOS platforms. As the business grew and staff was added and complexity skyrocketed, the company found that it was relying upon the ingenuity of its staff to overcome limitations of the systems in place. What was once straightforward and easy to understand had become compartmentalized, very specialized and “personal” for each of the many key contributors. It was clearly time for an upgrade in tools and procedures so that all departments could be using a common database which captured all pertinent operations data and supported instant decision making throughout the enterprise. After an exhaustive search and performance shootouts between candidate systems, All American selected BatchMaster Software Inc. and has begun implementation of the Food ERP system.
According to Gene Van Horne, Director of Operations for All American Seasonings, “The selection process included performance shootouts, hands-on evaluations on-site for key staff within each department. Other systems were considered including Process Pro and Sage Mas500, however All American found several features in BatchMaster that made it the best choice including ease of use, logical flow in day-to-day operations, ability to be “tailored” to their specific requirements and established procedures, support for Sample Request Management (many of the company’s products are developed in an iterative process with short “trial runs” subject to customer review), Allergen Management, Nutritional Labeling, real-time inventory information, easy interface to external systems, including accounting, importation of FDA databases, BatchMaster’s demonstrated success in the food sector and the company’s vision for future releases.”
Food safety and quality assurance:
- HACCP certified
- FDA compliant
- AIB and Guardian inspected
- Allergen control program
- Kosher approved by The Scroll K – Vaad Hakashurs of Denver
The staff includes highly-trained and experienced food scientists and all food safety requirements are strictly met, and in most cases exceeded. The All American laboratory is equipped with the latest instruments and state-of-the-art techniques to ensure quality and safety.
Finding the right combination of ingredients and flavors is just the beginning; All American packages product in a broad range of containers ranging from small, individual packets, all the way up to 1500-lb. super totes...and most anything in between. To address the various needs of customers, the firm also provides customized retail and foodservice-sized bottles of your finished product. Through advanced technology and equipment, computerized weighing, automated insertion and sealing ensures precise portion and quality control at all times.
Thomas R. Cutler is the President & CEO of Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based TR Cutler, Inc., the largest manufacturing marketing firm worldwide – www.trcutlerinc.com. Cutler is the founder of the Manufacturing Media Consortium of twenty seven hundred journalists and editors writing about trends in manufacturing. Cutler is also the author of the Manufacturers’ Public Relations and Media Guide. Cutler is a frequently published author within the manufacturing sector with more than 300 feature articles authored annually; he can be contacted at [email protected].