Emphasis on People Fuels Company Growth
About Baldwin Richardson Foods
As a custom ingredient manufacturer, Baldwin Richardson Foods (BRF) combines deep experience in food science with flexible and continuously evolving manufacturing capability. The company helps its customers translate culinary concepts into custom ingredients that ultimately create a heightened sensory experience for the consumer.
Services and Resources include:
- Culinary Innovation Center
- Research & Development Lab
- Pilot Plant Facilities
- Sensory Lab
- Ingredients & Formulation, including Clean Label and Organic
- Robust Development Process tailored to each customer’s requirements that quickly deliver products to market
Baldwin Richardson Foods develops and manufactures custom ingredients for the core platforms of syrup, fillings, sauces, and toppings.
Baldwin Richardson Foods and Cornell
Baldwin Richardson Foods recently completed its first year as a Gold-level Member in the Cornell Institute for Food Systems Industry Partnership Program. The company discovered a number of ways to collaborate with Cornell during its first year of membership. Baldwin Richardson Foods utilized access to faculty to discuss product development needs and concepts for innovative new products and also invited faculty to speak at its Liquid Product Technical Team meeting. Given the company’s interest in engaging with top food science students, it hosted a group of students at its Innovation Center in conjunction with the annual IFT conference.
Baldwin Richardson Foods renewed its Gold-level Membership. Sharon Webster-Tolin, Baldwin Richardson Foods’ Senior Director of Marketing and Innovation, serves on the CIFS-IPP Steering Committee and shared her perspective about the company and the elements behind its success and interest in continued collaboration with Cornell.
The food industry has recently faced a dynamic period of growth, and Baldwin Richardson Foods has enjoyed this growth as well. Food companies are in search of effective partners within their supply base, and “Baldwin Richardson Foods has carved out a niche for itself,” said Webster-Tolin. The company prides itself on building high quality products and strategic relationships with its customers that are unique among the competition. According to Webster-Tolin, the secret to successful customer relationships lies in the “Baldwin experience,” wherein the Baldwin Richardson Foods team does what it says it is going to do, does it better than others, and works to add more value. This commitment to customer service is focused on creating strong relationships between customers and the BRF team and putting the right resources in place to support customer relationships. In today’s competitive landscape, customers are expecting more from their suppliers as many do not have the deep R&D expertise they once did. Suppliers like Baldwin Richardson Foods have to provide extra value to their customers by creating total solutions. Baldwin Richardson Foods employees deliver the “Baldwin experience” by putting the best team in place for every area of the project from innovation to logistics to manufacturing. In addition, Baldwin Richardson Foods tries to think two steps ahead of its competition.
Baldwin Richardson Foods maintains a strong commitment to its employees. The company boasts a record of no layoffs ever, hosts town hall meetings for employees with senior management, and is focused on a teamwork approach. According to Webster-Tolin, the company is “all about people as a critical asset. The family that leads the company has a fundamental belief in the value of people.”
Baldwin Richardson Foods recently announced its plant in Williamson, NY is undergoing a $35 million expansion that is expected to create 30 additional jobs and to retain 275 current jobs. At a time when many food companies are buckling down and not expanding, the company is honoring its commitment to upstate New York. When considering expansion, the company looks to upstate New York first and is enthusiastic about supporting its long history in the Rochester area.
Baldwin Richardson Foods is a generous supporter of the communities where it is located. The majority of the company’s charitable support is directed toward children and educational causes. This charitable giving “goes back to people. The company really sees value in the people it employs and manufacturing is important. However, being a good citizen and a contributor to society is very important to the company as well,” said Webster-Tolin.
Baldwin Richardson Foods is a Gold-level Member of the Cornell Institute for Food Systems. “This is in alignment with trying to be two steps ahead of our competitors”, said Webster-Tolin. She added, “An opportunity to partner with an academic institution helps our company to be future-oriented and continue to stay ahead of emerging technologies, particularly in processing and food safety.” In addition, partnership with Cornell shows Baldwin Richardson Foods’ support of the upstate New York region and helps the company to find solutions in several areas across the business, including innovation, clean label ingredients, and processing. As the partnership deepens, per Webster-Tolin, the company is looking to “tap into the student base more by increasing student engagement and talent development, to provide opportunities for emerging industry leaders, and to continue giving back to upstate New York.”