Syracuse family utilizes Food Venture Center to start business, Perfectly Pickled Products now sold across NYS
Newswise — Media Note: Images of Mike Trudell and his pickled products can be viewed and downloaded here: https://cornell.box.com/v/PerfectlyPickledProducts.
ITHACA, N.Y. – Mike Trudell remembers when pickled eggs and sausage were staples at restaurants and taverns. “When I was a kid in the 1970s, I would eat pickled foods all the time,” he said.
But about five years ago, he started noticing that there were few if any pickled items available at restaurants. He asked owners why and learned that modern food safety regulations, enacted to prevent foodborne illness, made it hard for owners to offer many pickled products.
Trudell was inspired. “I wanted to bring back something old school to the new age,” he said.
From that idea, Trudell founded Perfectly Pickled Products (P3), which now sells an array of pickled eggs, meats and vegetables throughout New York state.
Trudell had no background in food science, but as he began researching his idea, it quickly became apparent that, if he wanted help getting this business off the ground, “Cornell was the place to go.”
He contacted the Cornell Food Venture Center (CFVC), which helps new and existing businesses ensure that their food products are safe, stable and meet regulatory guidelines.
Trudell and his family devoted themselves to the business, doing all the manufacturing, sales, distribution, public relations and web design themselves. By the end of 2013, their first year in business, they had placed P3 products in nearly a dozen stores in the Syracuse area. By December 2017, with the help of the CFVC, P3 products were available in 900 stores throughout New York, from Tops and Wegmans grocery stores, to New York City bodegas, and stores of all sizes across the state.
Over the past decade, almost all of the growth in the food industry has come from small, artisanal brands like P3 – those brands are growing 12.9 percent annually, compared to 1.4 percent for the entire food industry. Supporting small start-ups is key to growing the food industry economy in New York, said Bruno Xavier, an extension associate with the center at Cornell AgriTech in Geneva, New York.
“People may have an idea for a new food product, but it has to be safe for consumers, and that’s the biggest stress that the Food Venture Center can help you with,” Trudell said.
Cornell University has television, ISDN and dedicated Skype/Google+ Hangout studios available for media interviews. For additional information, see this Cornell Chronicle story.