AVON, Ohio - State and local leaders joined Avon-based Custom Culinary for a ceremonial groundbreaking Monday on an expansion of the manufacturing plant.
Custom Culinary is investing $5 million in its Avon Commerce Parkway plant and adding 17 new jobs, nearly doubling the current staff of 30 employees.
It's thanks to the Lt. Governor Mary Taylor’s Common Sense Initiative, a tool for putting Ohio and its companies in a position to compete by eliminating costly business regulations.
"This is a great example of government working at all levels to help Ohio companies be more competitive," said Taylor in a news release. "The law change has made operations more efficient. The result is more competitive businesses that are better positioned to expand and create jobs in Ohio."
Custom Culinary manufactures the finest quality and most authentic tasting food bases, sauces, and gravies for foodservice and food processing professionals, which are sold around the world. Some Custom Culinary products use alcoholic beverages in the recipe. The company had potential to expand but Ohio's liquor law required food manufacturers to buy alcohol in retail portions at retail prices, undermining their ability to compete with plants in other states.
In addition to the extra cost, the task of pouring product from individual bottles was cumbersome and time consuming. One Custom Culinary® recipe for a Merlot wine sauce called for 140,000 pounds of wine which had to be purchased, uncorked, sterilized and poured one bottle at a time.
“The Ohio liquor laws prevented us from purchasing wine/beer/spirits in bulk quantities through wholesale distributors which put us at a competitive cost disadvantage versus food manufacturers operating in other states. Ohio's liquor laws were not friendly to manufactures. The recent legislative change now levels the playing field and allows Custom Culinary to deliver the highest quality products at a competitive price," said David Love, Vice President of Supply Chain & Operations for Custom Culinary, Inc.
Lt. Governor Mary Taylor, through the Common Sense Initiative, worked with local and state leaders to find a solution to the regulation.
Part of the solution came through a change in law when the governor signed Senate Bill 73 into law. It allows Ohio food manufacturing companies – for the first time since prohibition – to purchase beer, wine and spirits for recipes at wholesale prices and in greater quantities. It also levels the playing field for Ohio alcoholic beverage manufacturers.
"We need to ensure that Ohio laws do not discourage job creation. Reforms passed this General Assembly level the playing field for businesses like Custom Culinary, and are an example of how by working together we can ensure Ohio’s regulatory environment is conducive to the needs of our growing manufacturers and other companies,” said State Senator Gayle Manning.
Custom Culinary is an early and important success story for the Common Sense Initiative. More of these stories are emerging every day as the state embraces an honest evaluation of how it operates.
“This was just the beginning of a year-long string of common sense success stories,” said Commerce Director David Goodman. “Working with the Lt. Governor on a common sense approach we have dozens of examples of helping small business. Many focus simply on promoting Ohio-based, Ohio-grown businesses.”
Custom Culinary, Inc. is a subsidiary of Griffith Laboratories Worldwide, Inc., a manufacturer of food ingredients used by food processors, restaurant operators and grocery retailers around the world. Founded in 1919, Griffith Laboratories is a privately held, third-generation entrepreneurial family business with more than 2,500 employees worldwide.
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