Interview with Bill Behnken
Chief Executive Officer, American Nutrition
Founded more than 40 years ago by Jack Behnken, American Nutrition Inc. (ANI) is a family-owned business headquartered in Ogden, Utah. Jack believed he could “do it better.” That sentiment still guides the organization today. ANI manufactures pet food using quality ingredients to create the best product for pet health.
Q: What differentiates American Nutrition Inc. (ANI) products from other pet food manufacturers on the market?
A: “American Nutrition has been making great pet products for over 40 years and is known in the industry for having very high standards of quality, food safety and consistency. This equates to unmatched product integrity in every bag, box and can of product we make.”
Q: How do you ensure quality within your manufacturing process?
A: “Quality assurance begins with sourcing our ingredients from trusted suppliers who share our vision for quality and food safety. We select suppliers through extensive auditing procedures to guarantee the proper specifications. We use automated processes to ensure proper batching, mixing, cooking and packing and follow up with frequent quality tests. Quality and food safety are crucial in our line of business.”
Q: What makes Ogden, Utah a prime location for ANI’s headquarters?
A: “Ogden was originally chosen for our first production plant due to four important factors: proximity to ingredient sources, large western markets, the existence of an industrious labor pool and a business-friendly economic environment. We are proud to call Ogden our home”
Q: What are some challenges facing ANI and how do you plan to overcome them?
A: “We currently make more than 900 formulations of pet foods consisting of various combinations of more than 650 ingredients that are packaged for sale in over 1500 SKUs. The planning and organization it takes to make this happen day after day is incredible and only possible with the great people that call ANI home. To ensure we meet our high quality standards, we have invested in state of the art systems and maintain in-house engineering to continuously improve processes. We embrace the complexity of the business and always look for innovative ways to further ensure our success. ”
Q: What do you envision for the future of ANI?
A: “As a family-owned business, we’re in it for the long-run. With the continued growth of the pet product market we anticipate that we will need to expand our production capacity and capabilities to meet those needs. In some cases the expansion will occur within our existing facilities but some will result through strategic acquisitions.”
Q: What is something that people might be surprised to learn about ANI?
A: “Although we’re a family-owned business, locals are surprised to learn that our Ogden facility is only one of our three large facilities. We also have facilities in Washington and Pennsylvania that, together, form a supply-chain network serving the U.S. and more than 17 countries around the world.”