Considering that we sent out our first 2011 Readers' Choice Awards survey in the summer of 2010, most of our food & beverage processing respondents probably were still feeling the effects of the recession when they contemplated the role suppliers play in their success … or survival.
"Expectations are higher with a shrinking market," Ron, whose firm supplies the foodservice market, said of his suppliers. He added that "those that responded" were rewarded with his business.
Positive comments again outnumbered critical ones in responses to this, our ninth annual survey of customer satisfaction and relationships with suppliers. "I'm very much satisfied with the companies I am currently with," wrote wrote a Corpus Christi, Texas, processor. "These are all great companies that over the years have served our dairy well," wrote another.
One cautionary comment we want to pass on: "I am terrifically and overall well pleased with the customer service of my suppliers. But pricing is just too volatile," wrote a California respondent.. "It's getting too expensive to make anything anymore."
We performed the survey differently this year, breaking up the 19 equipment and 25 ingredient categories into several smaller surveys. This year, we included five former Wellness Foods ingredient categories. There were two separate lists of survey recipients: one for our subscribers primarily involved in specifying processing and packaging equipment and services, a separate one for those buying ingredients and flavors.
As we mentioned, the first ballot went out last summer; the last one in November. E-mails to our subscribers, both print and online, contained links to a web-based survey form. We also carried a full ballot in the magazine, which brought in a handful of votes by old-fashioned fax machine. We received a total of 388 votes.
No supplier names were suggested; the form is an unaided recall survey. The e-mail recipients represent all categories of the food and beverage industry and all sizes of companies.
Congratulations to the 128 companies named on the following pages. You readers can use it as a yellow pages for new suppliers. And our thanks to all you food & beverage processors who responded to our survey.
On the following pages are the first-, second- and third-place winners in each category, as long as they get a minimum of 5 percent of the votes cast in that category. Differences of less than 3 percent are considered statistically insignificant.
Select a category: