Wisconsin Economic Development Guide


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W I S C O N S I N E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T G U I D E 65 W isconsin leads the nation in food production and Andy Gehl, president of Contract Comestibles knows why. "The state is a major food hub and it's really that rather than any program or incentive that has allowed our company to grow," he says. "Proximity to the general infrastructure of food equipment manufacturers and distributors, ingredient supplier and distributors — my access to ingredients both common and unique is more readily available here. If I need a stainless steel welder that has food experience, you can fnd that here. Wisconsin has great distribution logistics. All this expands our potential for success." Contract Comestibles is what's known as a co-packer, or contract food production company, one of many in the state. Located in East Troy, Wisconsin, the company has a 50,000-sq.-ft. facility and employs 22 workers. "Today's food entrepreneurs are developing products and recipes, then very quickly getting into trouble because they're not big enough for large co-packers to take them on, but they're too big to produce in their kitchen," says Gehl. "Contract Comestibles specifcally takes care of those small, niche products. Our focus is extreme high quality." The company produces primarily pumpable products (pictured), items with fow, like salsas or sauces packaged in a jar or bottle. b y P AT T Y R A S M U S S E N Access to raw ingredients and plenty of know-how creates a food production mecca. The Ingredients for Success A G R I C U L T U R E & F O O D P R O C E S S I N G Photo by Jennifer Mazza

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