Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 22

The Annual Sausage Report

Processing I.Q.
Sausage processors discuss how working smarter pays off
BY JOEL CREWS
jcrews@sosland.com

he successful transition of passing a business from one generation to the next requires careful consideration and respect for what has been accomplished while keeping an opportunistic eye on the future. Uncle Charley’s Sausage Co. has evolved to the next generation almost seamlessly. The new boss is hardly a newcomer to the business and while he appreciates the company’s history, he has demonstrated the value Charles Armitage of working smarter in an industry where stagnant companies are buried by the competition. Founder Charley Armitage still comes to the office almost daily, but the 77-year-old’s son, Chas, runs the company on a daily basis nowadays. “He still has the big office down at the

T

end of the hall, but I’ve been in charge of operations for about seven years,” says the younger Armitage, who was officially named president about a year ago. Chas worked in that capacity without the title for many years before the torch was passed, which became nec-

By 1996, Uncle Charley’s became the No. 1 sausage brand in Pittsburgh, Pa., and the surrounding areas. Smarter plant
essary when his dad’s health issues forced him to take a less active role in day-to-day operations. With his son on board, Charley focused his energy on sales, while Chas spearheaded production. “It was really what the company needed at the time anyway,” Chas says.

“Dad’s a very gifted salesman with a lot of integrity and a great product to sell. And I have always been the type who’s managed to get the square peg in the square hole quicker and easier than most, so production was a much better fit for me. So I was able to make the best product and he was able to sell the best product,” and by 1996, Uncle Charley’s became the No. 1 sausage brand in Pittsburgh, Pa., and the surrounding areas. Through the transition, the younger Armitage incorporated some new ideas and hasn’t been shy about putting his signature on the business his dad started in 1988 and successfully grew for more than 20 years. Chas’ business philosophy isn’t a huge departure from his dad’s, whose input and opinion are always considered when making critical business decisions. “Fortunately, we’ve always gotten along and we’ve always seen things about the same way,” Armitage says.

About six years ago, as business continued to boom, Armitage increased the size of the 14,000-sq.-ft. plant by almost 30 percent with a 4,000-sq.ft. addition. Another renovation was
Above: Chas Armitage, president of Uncle Charley’s Sausage Co.

22 • Meat&Poultry • February 2011 • www.MeatPoultry.com



Meat&Poultry - February 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meat&Poultry - February 2011

Meat&Poultry - February 2011
Commentary - Weighty menu considerations
Business Notes - Flav’s Fried Chicken opens in Iowa
Business Notes - Bob Evans Farms names new CFO
Business Notes - Wendy’s/Arby’s Group considers selling Arby’s
Business Notes - NCBA sets 2011 policy priorities
Business Notes - Smithfi eld executives warn of higher prices
Business Notes - McDonald’s income up in 2010
Business Notes - ‘Temple Grandin’ actress wins Golden Globe, Screen Actors award
Business Notes - Former Swift & Co. CEO joins Kraft
Regulatory - Digging in on nutrition labeling
Washington - New FDA law means end to status quo
The Annual Sausage Report - Processing I.Q.
The Annual Sausage Report - Sausage smart in Seattle
The Annual Sausage Report - Precision stuffi ng
Processor Profi le - The real deal
Sanitation Tips - Earth-friendly sanitation
Sanitation Tips - Going 'green'
Consejos Sanitarios - Eligiendo el verde
Maintenance Tips - Training the horse to drink
Lean Tips - Simple solutions save money
Small Business Matters - Small processors’ outlook: Partly cloudy
Packaging Solutions - Packaging sustainability
The Annual Sausage Report - Going gourmet
Food Ingredient Solutions - Clean and (not so) simple
From the Corral - Reconnecting with the public
Names in the News
New Product Showcase
Advertisers
The Insider
Over Herd
AMI Preview -- Focusing on Innovation
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Business Notes - Bob Evans Farms names new CFO
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 2
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 3
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 4
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 5
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 6
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 7
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Commentary - Weighty menu considerations
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 9
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Business Notes - Wendy’s/Arby’s Group considers selling Arby’s
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 11
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Business Notes - Smithfi eld executives warn of higher prices
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 13
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Business Notes - McDonald’s income up in 2010
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 15
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Business Notes - Former Swift & Co. CEO joins Kraft
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Regulatory - Digging in on nutrition labeling
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 18
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 19
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Washington - New FDA law means end to status quo
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 21
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - The Annual Sausage Report - Processing I.Q.
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 23
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 24
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 25
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 26
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 27
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 28
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 29
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - The Annual Sausage Report - Sausage smart in Seattle
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 31
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 32
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 33
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 34
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 35
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - The Annual Sausage Report - Precision stuffi ng
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 37
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 38
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 39
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 40
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 41
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 42
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 43
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Processor Profi le - The real deal
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 45
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 46
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 47
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 48
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 49
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Sanitation Tips - Earth-friendly sanitation
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 51
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Sanitation Tips - Going 'green'
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Consejos Sanitarios - Eligiendo el verde
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Maintenance Tips - Training the horse to drink
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 55
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 56
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Lean Tips - Simple solutions save money
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 58
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 59
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Small Business Matters - Small processors’ outlook: Partly cloudy
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 61
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 62
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 63
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 64
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 65
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Packaging Solutions - Packaging sustainability
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 67
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 68
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 69
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - The Annual Sausage Report - Going gourmet
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 71
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 72
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 73
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 74
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 75
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Food Ingredient Solutions - Clean and (not so) simple
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 77
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 78
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 79
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 80
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 81
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - From the Corral - Reconnecting with the public
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Names in the News
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - New Product Showcase
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 85
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 86
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 87
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 88
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 89
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 90
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 91
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 92
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Advertisers
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - Over Herd
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 95
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - 96
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI Preview -- Focusing on Innovation
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI2
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI3
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI4
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI5
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI6
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI7
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI8
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI9
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI10
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI11
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI12
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI13
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI14
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI15
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI16
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI17
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI18
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI19
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI20
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI21
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI22
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI23
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI24
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI25
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI26
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI27
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI28
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI29
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI30
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI31
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI32
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI33
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI34
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI35
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI36
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI37
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI38
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI39
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI40
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI41
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI42
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI43
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI44
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI45
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI46
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI47
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI48
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI49
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI50
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI51
Meat&Poultry - February 2011 - AMI52
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