A Clear Vision Since Day One
When Pacific Foods was founded, they chose to do things differently from other food companies. They began with time-honored recipes using simple ingredients from growers that they trusted, and they adopted sustainable practices to ensure kinder treatment of people, animals, and the planet. Over the years they’ve found that there’s one thing they value above all else: nourishment.
Their goal is simple. They’re out to Nourish Every Body.
In October of 1987, they opened their doors in Tualatin, Oregon and began as a co-packer making tofu and soy milk. Aseptic packaging allowed them to create other non-dairy beverages that didn’t require refrigeration, and people began to take notice of their brand. Within 10 years, they added free-range chicken, vegetable, and beef broths, followed by creamy and hearty soups, meals and sides.
Three decades later, they’ve held steadfast to their core values and continue to make nourishing foods with authenticity. As a business, they measure Pacific’s success by more than company profits. Their sense of achievement is also shaped by their impact on people and the planet.
They continue to evolve on their journey to Nourish Every Body focusing on:
- Sourcing pure, organic, and quality ingredients
- Creating simple recipes
- Enriching communities
- Following sustainable practices
Farm Fresh Thinking
Knowing where our food comes from is important to the folks at Pacific. The way plants are grown and how animals are treated affects the quality of the ingredients that they use. By sourcing all their ingredients from farms they respect, they know they’re getting the best quality possible. Making food taste good is only half the equation. They’re here to make food that they feel good about bringing into the world.
Source Locally Wherever Possible
Pacific’s aim is to source as many ingredients from local suppliers as possible. In fact, half their ingredients are sourced from local suppliers, including their partner farms. When there was a shortage of organic milk available for their flagship creamy soups, Chuck Eggert decided to produce his own. In 2000, he and his family bought land in Oregon’s Williamette Valley and converted it to organic. By demonstrating sustainable farming techniques, they’ve helped other Oregon farmers follow suit. It’s also helped to develop a local food web.
Sustainable farming is something they’re passionate about so they try to lead with a kind hand. That means protecting their founder’s farmland, raising animals humanely and treating the people with whom they work with fairly. Their founder’s farms supply them with free-range chickens and turkeys, organic milk and cream, and select produce for their soups. The milk from the Eggerts’ farms is used in their creamy soups within 24-36 hours from the time it was milked from the cows.
As part of raising organic chickens to supplement the supply for Pacific’s broths, they’ve brought egg hatcheries back to Oregon and helped turn the lights back on at an old hatchery that was no longer running in order to support the local farm economy.
Their model has shown farms that “going organic” is now more cost-effective, something they’ve really come to like. They’re pretty sure the planet digs it too.
When their founder and his family first purchased farmland in the Williamette Valley, the didn’t just envision what the land might become, they recalled what it once was. On some of the properties were wetlands that had been buried down or overrun with invasive species.
Restoring the land to healthy, fertile farmland was an ambitious and costly endeavor. Many said it couldn’t be done. But by working closely with the Wetlands Conservancy, the wetlands in Deer Creek, Hedges Creek, and Three Sisters have been reborn.
Today, they filter water and offer a valuable habitat for birds and other wildlife. And if the land there is that healthy, imagine what the food that they grow there is like.
Witness nature restored…
Local Greenhouses Continually Help Improve Product Quality
Local greenhouses incubate more than produce – they work as a testing ground where they grow and try different varietals of vegetables to determine which one imparts the best flavor and quality. They then partner with local farmers to grow the variety that they need. So when they weren’t satisfied with the flavor of the roasted bell pepper, they sourced from a flavor house to use in their roasted red pepper and tomato soup, they researched multiple varieties of red bell peppers in an effort to find the most flavorful, providing the optimal complement to the taste of classic tomato soup.
Taste Nature’s Handiwork
Every day at Pacific, they celebrate the natural goodness of food. They’ve always believed that nature’s work needs little refinement. That’s why they stick with just a few simple ingredients in our recipes, showcasing each ingredient’s true flavor and inherent nutrition. They like knowing where their food comes from and they figure you do too. Since 1997 they’ve verified the origin of every ingredient they use through their Certified to the Source Program. Even the smallest lentil is held to some mighty tough standards. They’re proud to share with you their organic roots. It’s more than a passion, it guides everything that they do.
They’re always working to raise the benchmark in the natural foods industry, surpass their own sustainable efforts and educate others about doing the same. They support transparency in labelling, because they believe you have a right to know what’s in your food. You can be sure that every food that bears the Pacific name will be free of GMOs, sourced locally whenever possible, and that every ingredient has a real purpose. They’ve never been big on shortcuts. Some might even call their slow cooking methods “old school.” Perhaps, but they think food tastes better without additives or flavorings so they don’t put ’em in their products. They try to ask, what would nature do? She’s always had a way with food. The smallest footprint leaves the biggest impact.
What if” gets asked a lot around this company. They ask questions like: What if we operated more efficiently? What if we made less waste? What if we recycled more? They’re constantly working to lessen their carbon footprint. They use packaging that requires no energy-intensive refrigeration. They’ve eliminated their trash compactor. They’ve changed the way they use energy. In 2010, they were even awarded the Best Award as one of Portland’s sustainable leaders. But it’s hardly about the glory. For them, they swear that they won’t rest til they’ve left this world a better place. Really, they believe that their work has just begun. They’re happy to share that they have released their first Company Sustainability Report. They’ve called it their Nourishment Report, as they look to Nourish Every Body.
Grow Better, Farm Friendlier, Act Kinder. And Repeat
When they opened their doors over 30 years ago, Pacific set out to make healthier, better tasting foods without losing sight of the people they’re making them for, or this planet we all call home. A lofty goal? Maybe, but they’ve never been big on shortcuts. Since then, they’ve begun tracking all their ingredients to the source. They’ve made it their mission to treat animals kindly and people respectfully. And they’ve seen that no one around us goes hungry. All the while lessening the footprint they leave behind. They believe there’s a right way of doing things, and it’s seldom the easiest way.
They can’t change the world overnight. But every day, even the smallest changes are making a world of difference…