Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 29

OPERATIONS
Kemper Foods International

Kemper Foods embraces change, invests in automation and isn't
afraid of taking little risks that heap on great rewards.
by Dan Malovany
In his pursuit of the next big thing, Mike Kemper looks
for it everywhere and sees it all the time. Of course, his
vision is slightly skewed from everyone else's. That's because his attention is centered on transforming everyday
foods into munchable snacks that fit between people's
fingers - or neatly in the palm of their hand.
Maybe that's why for his business, Kemper Foods
International, the vast food industry is such a
small world.
"We get excited about innovation. We never turn it
off," noted Mr. Kemper, CEO and founder of the New
Albany, IN-based company. "I'll find myself in a restaurant eating something that is so good, homestyle and
delicious, and I immediately start thinking, 'How can I
make this portable and handheld?' Our focus is on poppable, shareable, on-the-go, fun food."
To be more exact, Kemper Foods specializes in 0.75to 4.0-oz filled, encrusted baked snacks. For breakfast,
think about a blackberry jelly and cream cheese filled
mini bagel or a sausage-and-gravy biscuit that can be
eaten without dipping, dripping or spilling. Or for lunch,
picture turning a classic oversized deli sandwich into an
on-the-run snack.
"One of the best things that we've ever done is taken the greatest rye bread that you've ever eaten - with
caraway seeds - that's proofed and baked and filled it

with corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese and 1000
Island dressing," Mr. Kemper recalled. "You can sit
here and eat it until your tongue slaps your brain. It's
that outstanding."
To establish the company's distinct mindset for serving the food industry, Mr. Kemper created a culture that
strives to upend the status quo. It's not so much about
disruption. Rather, it's about melding product imagination with process adaptation to deliver something eyecatching to consumers as quickly as possible.
"In this industry today, you have to move on a dime
to make a change," Mr. Kemper explained. "You have to
be fresh and new with innovation. It involves being first
to the market, speed of innovation and not being afraid
of change. 'Be afraid of not changing;' that's what I try to
instill in everyone here, every day."
Kemper Foods' ability to adjust on the fly allows the
co-manufacturer to serve everyone from midsized to
major consumer packaged goods companies and foodservice chains. Its 51,000-sq-ft manufacturing facility
houses a battery of equipment that can be mixed and
matched like industrial Legos to tailor a process to a
baked snack's specifications. Then, Kemper Foods runs
production at rates that currently vary from 110,000 to
160,000 pieces an hour - or 1 to 1.5 million or more
a day. Those items are blast frozen and then conveyed

Mike Kemper (center),
the company's founder
and owner, along with his
sons Brennan (left) and
Matthew (right), spearhead
product innovation while
overseeing the company's
51,000-sq-ft plant.
Photos by Bryan Moberly Photography

www.bakingbusiness.com / March 2020 Baking & Snack 29


http://www.bakingbusiness.com

Baking & Snack - March 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Baking & Snack - March 2020

Baking & Snack March 2020
Contents
editorial - Finding new ways to fill the gap
newsfront
news - people/in brief
news trends snapshot
Special report - A whole new world
Operations - Fearless innovation
Trends - Pie in the sky
Formulation - Race against time
Formulation - Climbing for the claim
Equipment - Proofing the rule
Equipment - Looking out for trouble
Operations - Ready for rehab
Equipment - The it factor
Special report (Meeting Preview: TIA) - Boosting industry success
Special report (Meeting Preview: IFT) - Winds of change
Events
Featured innovation center - Puratos: Moving local to motivate
Ingredients & formulating
Equipment & packaging
Patents
New on the shelf
Marketplace
Ad index
New product spotlight - Fresh out of the oven
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Baking & Snack March 2020
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Baking & Snack March 2020
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 2
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 3
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 4
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 5
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 6
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 7
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 8
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Contents
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 10
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 11
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - editorial - Finding new ways to fill the gap
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 13
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - newsfront
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 15
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - news - people/in brief
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 17
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - news trends snapshot
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 19
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 20
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Special report - A whole new world
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 22
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 23
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 24
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 25
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 26
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 27
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 28
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Operations - Fearless innovation
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 30
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 31
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 32
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 33
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 34
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 35
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 36
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 37
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 38
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 39
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 40
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 41
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 42
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Trends - Pie in the sky
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 44
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 45
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 46
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 47
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 48
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 49
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 50
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 51
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 52
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Formulation - Race against time
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 54
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 55
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 56
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 57
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 58
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 59
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 60
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Formulation - Climbing for the claim
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 62
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 63
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 64
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 65
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 66
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Equipment - Proofing the rule
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 68
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 69
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 70
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 71
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 72
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 73
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 74
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 75
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 76
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 77
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 78
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Equipment - Looking out for trouble
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 80
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 81
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 82
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 83
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 84
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 85
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 86
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 87
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 88
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Operations - Ready for rehab
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 90
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 91
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 92
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 93
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 94
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 95
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 96
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Equipment - The it factor
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 98
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 99
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 100
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 101
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 102
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Special report (Meeting Preview: TIA) - Boosting industry success
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 104
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Special report (Meeting Preview: IFT) - Winds of change
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Events
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 107
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 108
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 109
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Featured innovation center - Puratos: Moving local to motivate
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 111
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Ingredients & formulating
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 113
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Equipment & packaging
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 115
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 116
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 117
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Patents
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 119
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - New on the shelf
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Marketplace
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 122
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 123
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 124
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 125
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 126
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 127
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 128
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - Ad index
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - New product spotlight - Fresh out of the oven
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 131
Baking & Snack - March 2020 - 132
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