The Rise of OSI Group from a Local Supplier to a Global Distributor

Today, OSI Group ranks as the premier food provider in the world, with 65 facilities across 17 countries and 20,000 employees. Its rise from humble beginnings to an award-winning organization has left a mark in the American economic history. OSI Group is a growing presence in the evolving story of a globalized and modernized economy. The history of OSI Group stems in the American immigrant experience. Otto Kolschowsky, the founder of OSI Group, was a member of the booming German-immigrant community at the turn of the 20th century. Otto Kolschowsky was instrumental in the transitioning of the Otto & Sons from a regional supplier to a global corporation, now known as OSI Group.

The core elements of the franchising model were to provide consumers with consistent products. The hamburger was McDonald’s core product, and that pressurized Otto & Sons and other suppliers to offer affordable, customer driven products, and products that could reach to ever-widening McDonald’s food joints while fresh. Fortunately, a technological breakthrough in the late 1960s made this task more affordable and easier than before. It led to a closer relationship between McDonald’s and its foodstuff suppliers. The flash-freezing process in which food suppliers would freeze their supplies quickly using liquid nitrogen created opportunities for cost reduction and product expansion in the food industry.

The close historical ties between Otto & Sons and McDonald enabled it to transition from a regional supplier to a global supplier of fresh foodstuff. In 1973, Otto & Sons built a state-of-the-art facility dedicated to the McDonald’s product line. It would utilize the latest technology for freezing hamburger patties. However, Otto & Sons folded its non-McDonald business aspects to the Glenmark brand, which continued to supply foodstuff to retail markets and local restaurants. Over time, Otto & Son grew into a two-track company, one of the premier local suppliers, and a global supplier of foodstuff to leading corporations across the globe. As parts of this transition and to expand its operations, Otto & Sons changed its name to OSI industries in 1975. OSI now have processing plants in three continents, Europe, America, and Asia.

 

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