OSI Group: International Food Supplier

In the early 1900’s, Otto Kolschowsky, a German immigrant in search of the American dream, owned and operated a small family meat market and quickly entered into wholesale. Eventually the business became Otto & Sons. The company entered into an informal agreement with a fledgling franchise, McDonald’s, to be its fresh meat supplier. Thanks to the emergence of cryogenic food processing, McDonald’s was able to narrow their number of fresh meat suppliers down to just a few, and Otto & Sons was one of them.

The 1970’s was a very important decade of growth for Otto & Sons. It constructed a plant that supplied food for their McDonald’s line of products while still maintaining ties with local area restaurants and markets. It also became known as OSI Industries. OSI took on a partner, Sheldon Lavin, and built plants in other states as McDonald’s franchises quickly spread. When McDonald’s started expanding internationally, so did OSI. Under the leadership of Mr. Lavin, OSI continued to grow, and McDonald’s was not their only customer.

OSI Group grew both internationally and nationally until it has become one of the world’s important food providers. Headquartered in Aurora, Illinois, the company has facilities in 17 countries. Now it doesn’t only process meats, but also vegetables, condiments, and snacks. Its growth in Europe, Asia, and North America is continuing. OSI Group continues to provide products to fast food chains globally.

OSI Group has also opened Culinary Innovation Centers for research and development of new products. The company is also cognizant of the environmental effect of food production and has won many environmental awards as well as awards for health and safety. OSI Group started as an American Dream of a German immigrant, is now a global financial powerhouse that is still focused on its customers and maintaining a clean environment and health and safety standards.