The European markets, especially in Spain look good for meat sales which is why OSI Group has added to a poultry meat production plant in the region. This plant in Toledo, Spain was previously producing about 12,000 tons in chicken products, but with expanded space and upgraded technology they will now be producing around 24,000 tons. The overall output of the plant is 45,000 tons in meat products, and this investment of 17 million euros by OSI Spain is in response to customer demands for chicken which have grown over 6℅ in the last year. OSI Group President David McDonald said the expansion was a brilliant move to better serve customers in the region and build the company’s food portfolio.
OSI began in 1909 as a butcher shop that became a family-run meat business in Chicago known as Otto & Sons. The Kolschowsky family who ran the business knew how to create customized finished meat products that restaurant owners could have prepared quickly for customers. Their fine quality was noticed by Ray Kroc, a businessman who bought McDonald’s and wanted Otto & Sons to be the the meat provider for his planned restaurant chains. The agreement both parties entered into turned out to be the catalyst for Otto & Sons to take their business across the nation and around the world. But the person who really made this happen was former financial analyst Sheldon Lavin who turned the company’s loans into profitable production centers and started buying outlets overseas that became strategic distribution centers.
The company changed its name to OSI Group in 1975 and in the next 40 plus years moved into 17 countries and became the 10th largest meat processing company in the world. But despite their huge size, they have sought to avoid the usual norms most corporations are known for. Lavin and McDonald believe in addressing employees personally and letting them come to their doors when they have suggestions or concerns. OSI Group is also welcoming to new employees who become part of the team after a major acquisition is made. In many cases OSI looks to keep most things about an acquired company intact since they know best how to serve their customers. OSI is also safety and environmentally conscious about how they run their facilities. They also have joined with their McDonald’s partners to give back to their communities through the Ronald McDonald House Charities and more