November Member Spotlight: Foodmate USA
What is your business industry category or specialty?
Foodmate is a poultry machinery/equipment supplier and we specialize in cut-up and deboning systems.
How do you describe your job to people outside the industry?
I work at a great company that automates, innovates and brings cost effective solutions to the poultry industry. I recruit and develop the people at this company.
Who are your main competitors and what differentiates you from the competition?What makes you unique?
There are only a few companies in the world that do what we do. (i.e. Meyn, Marel and Baader.) What separates us is our innovation and cutting-edge technology. We recently introduced new technology into our equipment that has never been brought into the poultry industry before. We are now incorporating x-ray technology to adjust each individual product that goes through our equipment at a high speed and in real time, in order to maximize yields (deboning efficiency). Another thing that makes us unique is the exceptional customer service that we offer.
How was the business started?
Foodmate started to produce poultry equipment in 2006 in the Netherlands. This was a result of a decades old, multi generation family history in the poultry industry. In 2010 we started the Foodmate US operations.
How many employees does the business have? Foodmate US, Inc. has approx. 70 employees at the moment while our sister company in the Netherlands employs approx. 150.
How did you end up in Atlanta?
We are located in Cherokee county, about 45 minutes North of Atlanta. Georgia is the largest poultry producing state in the US with the poultry industry contributing over $18 Billion to Georgia’s economy every year. On an average day, Georgia produces 26 million pounds of chicken meat and 9.2 million eggs. Other major poultry producing states are Alabama and Arkansas so a location in the South-East, and especially in Georgia was the logical choice for us to be close to our customers.
What is your number one business goal over the next year?
We are currently in a very steep growth curve with our business so besides keeping the growth going, we need to manage this growth by hiring and developing more people. We will also continue to invest in R&D to keep innovating new technology.
What is the best advice you have received regarding doing business with Americans/Dutch?
After moving to the USA, I found that although we share a lot of common values, there are many nuances and differences between the two cultures. It’s important to not underestimate those. But the American optimism, flexibility, marketing and customer service are a great combination with the Dutch innovation and technology.
Any other personal information you would like to share, e.g. hobbies, special interests, family etc… Both myself and Scott Hazenbroek (our company President and founder) love to ride our mountain bikes along the trails in beautiful Georgia. As well as spending time with our family and friends.