Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Lifestyles

February 28, 2013

Kerry Ingredients adds flavor and appeal to your favorite foods

CROSSVILLE — Kerry Ingredients liquid smoke facility in Mayland has been recycling before it was the fashionable thing to do.

The liquid smoke is produced by taking sawdust from hard wood sawmills and distilling it to liquid form.

"We've received awards from the state of Tennessee for finding a use for the sawmill's waste," said Freddy Conley, plant manager. "It's unique in that it's a food product but it's made from trees."

The company began in Mayland in the 1970s as family owned Hickory Specialties. It's product has been named Zesti Smoke since that time. Hickory Specialties also produced charcoal. The company is supplied by sawmills in the area, where there is an abundance of hickory wood.

It was sold to Bob Evans in 1996 and the charcoal facility sold to another entity in 1999. Kerry Ingredients acquired the liquid smoke plant in 2001.

The Mayland production facility and it's sister plant in Greenville, MO, make up the Kerry Ingredients liquid smoke division. It's one of only two liquid smoke producers in the United States and its products are shipped around the world to food producers.

And while you won't find their products on the shelves of the local grocery stores, it's likely many of the foods you enjoy incorporate one of the more than 400 products made in Mayland.

"It's used in barbecue sauces and food seasonings and in chicken and bacon products. Every hot dog has liquid smoke in it," explained Conley. "We have about 400 different recipes that use the base product."

It also provides that unmistakable smoky scent found in dog treats that will send your four-legged friend begging for a taste.

There is also a dry smoke product that provides the flavor for barbecue potato chips, dry rubs and many other foods.

The plant also provides coloring agents that make microwaveable foods more appetizing and preservatives that don't alter taste but provide greater food safety for products.

Kerry Ingredients employs 44 people at the Mayland facility. Many are from Cumberland County and right from the Mayland community. The plant is in operation 24-hours a day, five to six days a week.

It's provided steady employment for the area, with Conley not recalling a layoff in 25 years.

"It's a consistent business and we've got a lot of long-time employees," he said, adding a maintenance supervisor recently retired with 40 years of service to the plant.

Kerry is a part of its community, supporting local organizations, particularly the Mayland Volunteer Fire Department. It was also recognized with a Patriot Award by the Tennessee National Guard for accommodating employees with commitments to the guard.

The company is making use of new technology to make the facility more energy efficient, with a project underway to install new high-efficiency lighting with motion sensors. They are also adding aerodynamic fins to its fleet of tanker trucks to increase fuel efficiency.

The fleet of tankers is used exclusively for the liquid smoke products and allows Kerry to meet specific customer needs for shipping and safety.

Safety is a priority for the company, with more than five years without a lost-time accident.

"Our goal is to send our employees home in the same condition they came to work," Conley said.

Such an impressive safety record doesn't just happen. Safety is always on the minds of every team member. Monthly safety audits are conducted and any issues found quickly addressed, and everyone is encouraged to bring their safety concerns forward so that a solution can be found. Training is also key, with each employee completing at least 40 hours of safety training last year.

The longevity of the employees also helps, Conley noted.

All that work has paid off with the plant earning three safety awards from Kerry's global headquarters in Ireland. The plant was awarded Presidents Eye for Safety Awards for injury reduction, cost control and significant improvement. The facility was the only Kerry location in North America to receive more than one award this year.

Kerry Ingredients has 47 production facilities in the United States. Because it serves food manufacturers and producers, it holds all its facilities to high quality standards. Kerry Ingredients in Mayland has an Safe Quality Food Institute certification of Level 3. The SQF certification requires a rigorous, credible food safety management system, and Level 3 is its highest designation.

"That means we can sell to pretty much any food customer," Conley said.

Kerry also operates a state-of-the-art Center of Excellence at its headquarters in Beloit, WI. There, research and development teams can test products and work with its customers to ensure it meets their specific needs.

"Before we bring any new product to the market, it is thoroughly tested," Conley said, adding there are liaisons locally working with the team in Beloit.

Kerry Group serves just about every segment of the food and beverage industry, and the Center of Excellence in Beloit is also equipped with equipment specialized to each segment of its business and can allow them to produce any Kerry product produced in the world. It is one of the leading and most technologically advanced manufacturers and innovators for food ingredients.



 

1
Text Only
Lifestyles
  • FFG Resident Services Painting.jpg FFG Resident Services presents painting to the Pat Summitt Foundation

    A dramatic portrait of Pat Summitt, painted by Chuck Jensen, was presented to the Pat Summitt Foundation by Fairfield Glade Resident Services at its Community Information Event on memory care.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 127 seniors JosephZarolla-W6.jpg Zarola entertains 127 Seniors

    The members of the 127 South Senior Center met Friday, July 25, for bingo and Mexican Train domino game. Conversation, along with coffee and sweets, was enjoyed by all. Helen Lord called the bingo numbers, and the prizes were furnished by Eye Centers of Tennessee. Life Care Center checked everyone's blood pressures.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Marriage licenses (Published July 30, 2014)

    July 29, 2014

  • Habitat-Group photo-Crisp Dedication .jpg Habitat celebrates 55th home dedication

    Anne Crisp is excited that she and her two daughters have a home to call their own. Cumberland County Habitat for Humanity (CCHFH) dedicated the 55th home to be built in partnership with low-income families. Crisp put more than 500 hours of "sweat equity" into her home and has completed 50 hours of self-improvement, where she attended classes on budgeting, home maintenance and good neighbor among others.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • Gypsy Rose to visit Fair Park

    The Cumberland County Playhouse is currently performing the award-winning Broadway play “Gypsy.” A great American story set during the 1920s fading vaudeville circuit, "Gypsy" portrays the rise of famed burlesque performer and stage mother Gypsy Rose Lee as she journeys across the country with her mother and sister during a time when Vaudeville was dying and burlesque was born. The complex character of Rose could be described as bold and brassy, as she steamrolls everyone in her way to turn her daughters June and Louise into child stars.

    July 28, 2014

  • plateau gardening-springBlooms4361.jpg Match August garden tasks to plant biology

    During all seasons in temperate climates like ours the greenery around us is changing. New shoots appear and leaves pop out of swollen buds after spring rains.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pleasant Hill Ramblings.jpg Landis reunites with Japanese teacher

    There is a special lady living in Pleasant Hill who spent 42 years of her life in Sendai, Japan, teaching English at a Japanese Christian school and as a missionary with the United Church of Christ Board for World Ministries.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lion of Year.jpg Lions Club recognizes Lion of the Year

    Charles Loveday, charter member of the Crossville Lions Club, was recognized as the Lion of the Year at the annual installation of officers picnic July 8. Loveday earned this award for his service as first vice president, membership chairman, eye glass chairman and his help with fundraisers and other matters where needed. From left are Loveday and President Gary Laura.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 8-8 counseling center-play with dolls.jpg Christian Counseling Center celebrating 12 years

    Help the Christian Counseling Center of Cumberland County (C5) celebrate 12 years of community service. Dine at Ruby Tuesday of Crossville Aug. 8, 9 or 10. Print the flyer from the center’s website, www.cccotp.org, and give it to the server.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • A Time 4 Paws collecting shoes to help Soles4Souls in fight against global poverty

    Attention anyone with a closet! Those shoes no longer wanted are desperately needed to fight the human tragedy of global poverty.

    July 24, 2014