As a member-owned corporation led by Executive Director Jeff Sterne, the All Star Dairy Association is setting all time new records for both sales and membership participation. While closing in on a total membership of nearly 200 individual companies representing over 260 plants, All Star continues to add new members each year. With the help of a very capable and experienced staff (Jim Sutton, Ken Midtgaard, and Doug Eikenbary), the association has experienced continual sales growth, despite a consolidating industry. Additionally, the association continues to add new supplier partners to their list of over 70 discounted offerings. Purchasing services now cover the following categories:
- Packaging (resin, caps, cartons, bottles, labels, bulk cans, etc.)
- Ingredients (flavorings, juices, sweeteners, nuts, confections, powders, vitamins, drink bases, fruits, etc.)
- Cleaning / Sanitizing / Water Treatment / Lubricants
- Coolers / Freezers / Dispensers/Lab Supplies / Uniforms
- Plastic Cases / Ink Jet Coders
- Tires / Trucks / Fuel
Without the help of a much larger buying entity, dairies find themselves at a distinct disadvantage when they buy supplies using only their own purchasing power and scope of information. "All Star is not only able to keep its members competitive in today's environment, but we are also able to provide services such as those listed to help our members stay profitable." says Jeff Sterne.
Announcing A New WebsiteOn April 1, 2005, All Star launched its new website. Available to the general user, it includes new features such as convention details, scholarship application, links to a variety of sites as well as service and news updates. Available to the member (password protected) is a myriad of comprehensive and interactive information such as archives for All Star News, Legal bulletins, and Quality memos. Additionally, you can navigate through the Member 2 Member listing, get complete supplier information, as well as register for the annual convention and other events.
Member 2 Member Services AddedWith a vast membership across 45 states, All Star is encouraging its members to support each other. "Many of our members produce specialty products that could be distributed by our member dairies in other parts of the country," says Jeff Sterne. Additionally, many plants would like to increase productivity by co-packing certain products for other members. By supporting each other, the dairies make themselves more profitable using All Star as a vehicle to accomplish this. A catalog has been published and distributed to the membership to highlight these opportunities. All Star is now using this same concept to coordinate product sales and delivery to national customer accounts.
All Star UniversityAt the March 2005 annual convention, All Star announced a new service to enhance their training offerings. Leading experts in the areas of Sales, Management, Distribution, Plant Operations, Food Safety and Accounting have been engaged as a resource for in-plant training, consulting, and seminars. A booklet, which includes all of the information needed, is available to members as a reference. All services are at low negotiated prices.
All Star feels that well trained employees make their members stronger. Stronger members thus make the association stronger. Because of this feeling, All Star is entering their third year of "underwriting" the cost of training to its members. The association identifies, through its monthly newsletter, upcoming training events. Under this innovative program, the member companies are able to choose specific program(s) that fit their training needs in a variety of disciplines.