Although it doesn’t cross our minds as we bite into a steak at a restaurant, that meat comes from somewhere. While we focus on the quality of the restaurant and how it prepares the food, shouldn’t it be just as important to understand the quality put into the processing of the food?
Patterson Food Processors is a family owned business that has provided food-processing solutions since 1946. President Michael Schirato ensures that quality is in the company’s bloodline through its decades of experience in the industry. “Being family owned, we share a true commitment to the quality of our products, customers and employees,” Schirato says. “We are hands-on in all aspects of the operation.”
Schirato notes that several family members are active in the daily operations of Patterson, along with many family friends, and each is dedicated to the success of the company.
Patterson Food Processors specialize in custom-processed meat products for restaurants, hotels, foodservice companies and further processors, offering a full line of beef, pork, poultry, veal and lamb. Schirato stresses that the company is able to react quickly and effectively to customer demands.
“If a chef requests a custom blend for a particular product, we are able to formulate that in our R&D lab in a matter of days, and upon approval, have the product fully developed and ready for shipment within weeks – sometimes even days,” he explains.
Knowledge and Research
Schirato and his brother Matthew are grandsons of Charlie Patterson, who founded the company with his brother Huby. In 1966, Charlie Patterson’s son-in-law Dennis Schirato joined the management team.
Schirato describes Patterson Food Processors as a fast-growing, fully integrated mid-sized company. Through its decades in the food industry, he notes that the company had developed brand loyalty working closely with suppliers, some of which have worked with Patterson Food Processors for more than 35 years.
To stay up-to-date with the industry, the company places a strong emphasis on R&D. “Our R&D team is constantly analyzing market trends and developing products needed to fit those future demands,” Schirato says. “They work in conjunction with plant engineers dedicated to integrating new processing technology equipment. We don’t just specialize in a few core items. Our wide range of diversification allows us to meet just about any customer needs.”
When requests come into Patterson Food Processors for a particular product, R&D works closely with the chef, restaurant owner or other type of client to develop the product in a timely manner. “We have seen tremendous sales growth through the development and production of custom products,” Schirato says. “The relationships and instilled trust from our clients continues to fuel our success.”
The R&D team at Patterson Food Processors has more than 40 years of combined experience. Also, the company’s buyers total more than 65 years of experience, giving it an understanding of market trends that allows it to be completive. “We like to pass that knowledge on to our customers and help them stay ahead of the market, thus helping them control costs,” Schirato asserts.
“We have great respect for all of our customers,” he continues. “We treat each one as if they are our only client. We employ a policy that allows each customer direct contact with the owners and management.”
Patterson Food Processors stands behind its products and service, but Schirato points out that the company is always open to suggestions that could better it. Its established, long-standing relationships in the food industry are with those who also share a commitment to quality and service, and Schirato notes that suppliers and vendors work with Patterson Food Processors on projects the same way the company works with its clients.
The company serves Texas and bordering states with its own delivery fleet, but also services national accounts through its network of foodservice distributors. “We receive, produce and deliver six days a week, ensuring timely delivery and the freshest product possible,” Schirato states.
To meet increased production demand, Patterson Food Processors is expanding its facilities by 50 percent this year. The addition includes a new steak department with dry-age room and a state-of-the-art ground beef operation. There also are new offices with a meeting and presentation room adjacent to a new R&D test kitchen allowing for product demonstrations. Schirato says these moves will allow the company to expand on the range of services offered to their wide customer base.
“Over the past 10 years we have reinvested on many fronts – new facilities, processing equipment, transportation and staff,” Schirato states. “Our range of services allows us to offer our customers a complete turnkey solution for their particular needs.”
The company is a member of several food industry groups. They include Southwest Meat Association, American Association of Meat Processors and the Better Business Bureau. The company says it will remain family owned, and notes that when customers call, they can talk to the owner.