Success Stories

Each year, hundreds of U.S. suppliers participate in Food Export-Midwest and Food Export-Northeast’s programs.  As a result, companies are successful at generating new export sales, establishing new distributorships, expanding their production facilities, and hiring additional employees.  Read these success stories to learn more.

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Branded Program Assists Missouri Supplier Increase Exports

by Food Export | Sep 14, 2016
Hammons Products Company has been family-owned since Ralph Hammons began buying Black Walnuts in 1946. The tradition has been carried on by Ralph’s son, Dwain, and now his grandson, Brian, making three generations of Hammons entrepreneurial leaders.

In 1946, grocer Ralph Hammons noticed a lot of wild Black Walnuts growing all over Southwest Missouri. Seeing the future potential of this local crop, he bought a cracking machine and began buying Black Walnuts from the hardworking Ozarks people who gathered them each fall. Since then, the company has survived short crops, fad diets and a destructive tornado to become the world’s leading supplier of American Black Walnuts.

Today, Hammons Products Company continues to buy Black Walnuts in the same nostalgic way. Coming to the company from over 215 local buying stations across 11 states, the efforts of thousands of people working together has helped make the American Black Walnut an integral piece of Midwest culture.

The processing plant in the small town of Stockton, Missouri has developed and grown, employing over 80 people with another 20 during the fall harvest season. The SQF level-3 certified plant shells about 25 million pounds of nuts each year, producing Black Walnut nutmeats for food ingredients and ground nut shells for industrial uses.

Utilizing Food Export’s Branded Program in 2015 helped the Missouri Supplier increase exports sales. Focusing on expanding their brand in India and other markets in the region, they utilized Market Access Program funds to defray the cost of a strong marketing campaign in these overseas markets. Their strategy paid off as they were able to report new export sales as of February 2016 and project additional growth over the next twelve months. Inquiries from India and other countries are now frequent and encouraging, thanks to the Branded Program.

Food Export uses funding from the Market Access Program (MAP) to help America’s small businesses increase their exports of food and agricultural products. As these exports increase these small businesses are creating jobs and improving the strength and stability of our agricultural economy. Food Export-Midwest and Food Export-Northeast are non-profit organizations that work in collaboration with their member state departments of agriculture and the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service. They offer a wide range of programs and services that help boost America’s agricultural exports.

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