Meat+Poultry - July 2018 - 18


(From left): Douglas
Mackay, general counsel
and director of human
resources; Mathew
Trowbridge, director
of operations; Ryan
Meyer, director of cattle
procurement; Jim Rogers,
senior vice president
of sales; Kaz Nomura,
president and CEO.


Creekstone bounced back with a $56 million
expansion. Creekstone reached $626 million
in sales for 2014, the same year the expansion
was completed.
The programs and products of Creekstone
Farms all carry a uniqueness similar to that of
the company itself. They include case-ready
beef, Duroc pork, certified humane natural
Black Angus beef, a case-ready trimmed
program for retail, and the only grain fed
non-GMO program of any scale.
In 2017, integrated trading and investment
conglomerate Marubeni acquired the company
from private equity firm, Sun Capital Partners.
Marubeni intends to invest in Creekstone's
future, rather than build it up for liquidation.
"Marubeni came along and acquired us last
July and that's been really refreshing to us that
have been here for a long time," Meyer says.
"Now we have the opportunity to really talk
about long-term issues."
President and CEO Kaz Nomura agrees.
"I think we have to keep growing," he says.
Nomura and the rest of the executive team
agree that a second shift is the starting point.
Nomura goes on to say that three to five
years is an achievable target for adding a
second production shift. The plant currently
runs a single shift, five days a week, with a
sanitation shift operating each evening. Short

MEAT+ POULTRY | 07.18 |

term, it might add a sixth day, Saturday, to the
schedule this summer.

The cattle stay comfortable while waiting to
move through the driving chute to harvest.
Indoor pens provide cool air in the summer
and help keep cattle warm in the winter with
concrete walls and floors. Temple Grandin,
Ph.D., designed the entire livestock handling
area to minimize stress before slaughter.
Access to clean water, specific air flow patterns
to keep the sight and smell of slaughter
away from cows, and room to rest and lay
down all ensure a calm and mellow animal.
The specially designed ridged floors prevent
slipping and falling, and the crew rinses them
between every load. Cattle follow a high-walled
tunnel with a light at the end that attracts
them. They lift their heads to the light and are
stunned before they have the chance to panic
or become stressed.
After shackling, workers remove the
internal organs, head and hooves, and hide
from the carcasses and processing begins with
a bacteria wash and chill. After the chill, a
shot of filtered air aids muscle separation and
boning, a process Creekstone has used for a
few years. Carcasses are graded and moved to
cold storage.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meat+Poultry - July 2018