OSI Group is a global food solutions company based in Aurora, Illinois, with locations in 18 countries across the Americas, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region. Otto Kolschowsky started this company in 1909 as a family-owned butcher shop and meat market. When his sons joined the business in 1928, he named it Otto & Sons. Now known as OSI Group, the company has a long history of accomplishments over the last 112 years. One of its most noteworthy early accomplishments was being the first supplier of fresh ground beef to the newly-opened McDonald's restaurants in 1955.
The partnership with McDonald's paved the way for Otto & Sons to grow to become OSI Industries. This transition continued into the 1960s and 1970s as OSI retained its partnership with McDonald's and grew along with the new chain of fast-food restaurants.
By the late 1960s, McDonald's consolidated its nationwide pool of meat suppliers from 100 to only four, when cryogenic freezing became the norm. The company, which was then operated by Otto's grandsons and still went by the name Otto & Sons, was one of the four meat suppliers McDonald's chose. This led to the decision in 1973 for Otto & Sons to build its first meat processing facility dedicated to serving only the needs of McDonald's restaurants. Clients other than McDonald's became part of the company's Glenmark brand. This brand supplied specialty meats to Chicago-area restaurants, and processed meats to local supermarkets.
Otto & Sons became OSI Industries in 1975 to better represent its standing as a technologically advanced food processing company rather than a family butcher shop. As the heirs of Otto Kolschowsky reached retirement age, they chose to bring on longtime financial consultant Sheldon Lavin as an investment partner and he became part owner of the company. OSI Industries opened a second facility outside Salt Lake City, Utah, in 1977, and one year later, international expansion began with the first joint venture in Germany. Today, the global company is known as OSI Group, and operates over 65 facilities in 18 countries, employing about 20,000 people.
Who Does OSI Group Serve?
OSI Group has a worldwide reputation as a premier food provider. The company's partnerships include the top retail and foodservice brands around the world. Clients of OSI Group appreciate the company for its ability to create concept-to-table food solutions that their consumers love. Here are just a handful of commitments that clients can expect when they choose to partner with OSI Group:
- Customized food solutions prepared to the client's exact specifications
- Ongoing commitment to sustainability
- Efficient food supply chain expertise that clients can trust
- Uncompromising quality assurance and food safety practices
- Deep knowledge of flavors preferred around the world
- Research and development facilities that allow clients to further explore their meal ideas
- Strong commitment to act with integrity and put the customer first
OSI Group's Food Safety and Quality Assurance Practices
The world's largest food brands know they can trust OSI Group to keep their food safe. OSI Group makes a strong commitment to protecting the products, reputation, and brands of its clients. A team of highly experienced quality assurance experts is present within the processing network to ensure the following:
- Employee compliance to pre-determined specifications
- Implementation of proven process control and supply chain measures
- Implementation of strict food tracking and tracing systems
- Secure transportation of food items at the completion of processing
OSI Group follows the food safety steps known as Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) systems. All OSI's facilities actively maintain Global Food Safety Initiatives (GFSI) certification or other globally recognized certifications for their food safety and quality systems. These additional measures ensure that all food products leaving an OSI Group facility are safe and of the highest quality.
At OSI Group, employees aim to exceed client expectations and food safety standards set by regulatory agencies. The company partners with several additional agencies to achieve this goal and expects its suppliers to adhere to the same high standards that it holds. The following are the tracking measures used by OSI Group to further ensure safety and quality:
- Customer, internal, and third-party audit scores
- HACCP deviation monitoring
- Environmental sanitation surveillance
- Frequent reporting on product consistency
- Monitoring of raw materials and ingredient standards
- Tracking of process control measures
- Sanitation microbiological surveillance
Employees of OSI Group understand the importance of consistency, quality, and taste of every food product. They continually evaluate these factors during processing to ensure the final products meet client expectations. Each week, employees and department supervisors meet with plant management for sensory evaluation sessions. Each facility also performs an internal audit on its own work once per quarter.
OSI Group takes its commitment to animal welfare and the environment seriously. Two ways the company demonstrates this is by participating in eco-management systems and supporting several organizations to advance these causes.
Why Food Companies Should Partner With OSI Group
With a history of over 100 years, the most stringent safety requirements in the business, and a commitment to delighting the client, OSI Group is poised to meet the needs of food companies around the world. Interested organizations may contact OSI Group to learn more about what a partnership with one of the world's top food solutions companies can do for them.