Meat+Poultry - June 2018 - 71
"The third area we are focusing more
heavily on is the school lunch program," Chris
explains. "This area has increased 30 percent a
year for the past few years for us. We think it's
because the buyers have strict rules on things
like salt and fat content. We listen to them and
build products to meet their demands."
The Kunzlers admit that their cautious
approach has advantages. They say, for
example, they missed the initial opportunity
to capitalize on turkey bacon demand by two
to three years but expect to launch a fantastic
turkey bacon this spring.
John sums up their philosophy rather
adeptly saying, "We can't be all things to all
people or all markets. We just have to focus
on what we do well and then work to do it
even better. Take something like boiled or
cooked deli ham. It is the No. 1 seller in every
deli, but it only sells when it is on sale. What
we're saying is that we want safe, quality
products at a reasonable price, but we need to
be very competitive."
"Who says folks
- CHRIS KUNZLER III
and this is an area of the state that has a very
strong work ethic."
The brothers are cautious and measured
when it comes to rolling out new meat
products, agreeing that there are many
fads from everything like artificial meats,
to organics, or the latest diet crazes. "Food
quality is an everyday theme to us at
Kunzler's," Chris says, "but the No. 1 thing
here is food safety. If we don't have it, we'll
have nothing. The food safety employees wear
a gold badge for a reason."
Kunzler & Co. has three main channels.
One is their sales to retail groups, from
supermarket chains and club stores. Things
change quickly in this segment, including many
consolidations, so investments there have to be
well thought out, they advise.
A second key market is the convenience
store arena, particularly in the chain stores
selling hot dogs and other specialty foods.
They are a key player in their hot dog sales east
of the Mississippi River in this marketplace.
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www.meatpoultry.com | 06.18 | MEAT+ POULTRY