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King Arthur Baking Company and TVS Forge a Partnership to Deliver Quality Baking Products and Empower Local Communities

King Arthur Baking Company and TVS Forge a Partnership to Deliver Quality Baking Products and Empower Local Communities

Party Animal - acrylic on wood uses abstract lines and colors to create a fun and colorful cow sticking out its tongue.

King Arthur Baking Company, based in Norwich, VT, and renowned for its commitment to producing high-quality baking products, and TVS, a distinguished 3rd party logistics partner based in Brevard, North Carolina, are proud to announce their groundbreaking partnership to enhance the availability of King Arthur’s premium baking mixes and flours, while empowering the local community through inclusive employment opportunities. As a result of the partnership TVS now blends, fills, and packs a large variety of baking mixes and flour blends for King Arthur, like their Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour and 00 Pizza Flour. 

When King Arthur Baking was searching for a co-manufacturer to meet rapidly increasing wholesale demand for their gluten-free products, TVS stood out among the competition due to their ability to maintain King Arthur’s unwavering quality standards, and their alignment with the company’s values as an employee-owned, founding B Corp. TVS shares King Arthur’s commitment to conducting business in a manner that not only benefits their organization but also positively impacts their employees and the community.                                 

“We are thrilled to embark on this new journey alongside TVS,” says King Arthur Baking Company CEO Karen Colberg. “From the pride they take in their work, to all that they do for their employees and community, we couldn’t be more grateful to have them as our partner.

For more than 50 years, TVS has been dedicated to enhancing the dignity and quality of life for people with disabilities and other barriers to employment. Beginning in 1967 as a day program for adults with developmental disabilities, TVS has grown to become one of the largest employers in Brevard and Transylvania County.

“As a 100% employee-owned company, King Arthur Baking has demonstrated a powerful commitment to their employees,” said TVS CEO Jamie Brandenburg. “And, thanks to King Arthur, there are now dozens more individuals with significant disabilities and other barriers to employment working at TVS and receiving a living wage!  I can’t say enough about what this relationship means to us and the impact that King Arthur Baking is making to everyone in our communities.”

The partnership of King Arthur Baking Company and TVS is already creating a ripple of positive change within the community, starting with King Arthur’s Bake for Good outreach program visiting the area in October to bring baking to the extended community of TVS employees. In addition to social impact programs, King Arthur strives to make planet-forward, people-positive business decisions in all that they do, including their commitment to source 100% regeneratively grown wheat by 2030. The partnership between King Arthur Baking and TVS aligns two purpose focused organizations to scale impact and meet increased customer demand.

For more information, please follow King Arthur Baking Company on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and visit www.tvsinc.org to learn more about TVS’ manufacturing capabilities and mission.

TVS partnership facilitates Laila Ali spice donation to local food pantries

TVS partnership facilitates Laila Ali spice donation to local food pantries

TVS HR representatives stand beside the organized school supply donations.

Laila Ali Lifestyle spices are freshly stocked at local pantries thanks to a partnership between Transylvania Vocational Services (TVS) and Laila Ali. The spices were distributed to the Transylvania County Sharing House and the Asheville Manna Food Bank last week.

“TVS pursues partnerships with brands that want to build relationships,” said TVS Director of Business Development Nan Higgins. “We love watching our partners not only support our mission of employing adults with disabilities but by also collaborating and supporting others in our community.”

A total of 2,592 canisters were donated to the Transylvania County Sharing House and the Asheville Manna Food Bank. Each pantry received 54 boxes containing a mixture of Spicy Pepper, Sassy, and Soulful spice seasonings.

“I have been dedicated to supporting food banks for more than a decade due to my concern for the numerous Americans suffering from hunger. It is a privilege for me to contribute to this cause by donating my Spice Blends to local food banks,” said Laila Ali Lifestyle owner and founder Laila Ali. “By donating these spice blends, I hope to enable families in need to create nutritious meals at home.”

Ali also donated spices to other food pantries located near her home in Georgia.

“We rarely have spices to offer our neighbors. We strive to make it look like a grocery store with options to choose from— items they need and desire,” said Transylvania County Sharing House Executive Director Rev Shelly Webb. “We also love the opportunity to collaborate and prop up each other’s impactful work as organizations seeking to do good work.”

Helping facilitate and deliver the donation, TVS was happy to see the relationship turn into community support.

“TVS’ commitment to supporting their community resonates deeply with me and I am proud to be a part,” reflects Ali. “It was one of the reasons I decided to partner with TVS as well as their prioritization of quality manufacturing practices. Moreover, they actively promote inclusivity by offering employment and support to individuals with disabilities.”

Laila Ali Lifestyle Spices are organic, gluten-free, sugar-free, and non-GMO. To learn more about her brand and products visit: https://lailaali.com/ 

Read it here in the Transylvania Times.

 

TVS HR representatives stand beside the organized school supply donations.
Michael Cook celebrates 20 years at TVS!

Michael Cook celebrates 20 years at TVS!

“I have been working here for 20 years,” smiles Michael Cook, TVS Production Associate. “It feels good to see my name above the microwave.”

A rotating slide deck on the breakroom TV displays company activities, health messages, important dates for employees to remember, and to Michael’s comment – it celebrates employee anniversaries.

“You can’t think of TVS and not think of Michael,” said TVS CEO Jamie Brandenburg. “One of the highlights of my workday is receiving a warm greeting from Michael in his own unique way. Often, his greetings remind me of something that happened years ago—and he describes the event down to the smallest detail.”

He can be found closing cartons, passing boxes down a conveyor belt, quality checking canisters to make sure they are clean before packing them into boxes, and wiping cans before they are filled with Mountain Maid Pancake and Waffle Mix. “I have always worked here,” says Michael. Throughout the years, he has also worked in the TVS Kitchen preparing lunch for employees and cleaning the warehouse space as a Quality Housekeeper.

While Michael is trained in every area of production his favorite product to work with are the almonds and walnuts. In 2017, TVS started packaged nuts for the U.S. Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, which are sent to U.S. Troops around the world.

“Once he is shown how to do something, he knows exactly what to do and you never have to show him again,” said Production Manager Brian Wilson. “I have worked with Michael for four years and it is never a dull moment with him. I absolutely love it!”

Michael is described as kind, positive, smart, and as a good singer and master at song lyrics.

“Michael has a memory like the Library of Congress,” said Brian. “I enjoy talking music with him because he knows the words to any song.”

While working, you might find him dancing and working to the beat of the music.

Production Associate Joanna Morgan has worked with Michael for the last eight years. “He really is a good singer; much better than me,” she laughed. “He is cheerful and smiley with a positive attitude. Michael always says, ‘good job Joanna’ and then gives me a high-five. He high-fives everyone when the achieve things.”

Michael is a fixture at TVS – to echo his supervisor and coworker, “he is loved by all, and he is one of my favorite people to work with.”

Michael’s fun and kind personality is reflected in his life outside work. He enjoys The Cracker Barrel, Chocolate Chip Birthday Cake, and Michelangelo – the orange Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle.

When not at TVS, Michael is enjoying the company of his dogs, Apollo and Nova, along with his 4 cats. His other hobbies include watching game shows like The Price is Right and his favorite sitcoms, Three’s Company and The Jeffersons.

Michael also mentioned past adventures at the Mountain State Fair, where he loved to ride the Ferris Wheel and drive Bumper Cars. He has also been involved in the Transylvania County Special Olympics participating in bowling, soccer, swimming, and track and field competitions.

Reflecting over the years, Michael said, “Today has been a great day.”

 

TVS and Dover Foods Expand Capabilities & Capacity with New Machines

TVS and Dover Foods Expand Capabilities & Capacity with New Machines

Party Animal - acrylic on wood uses abstract lines and colors to create a fun and colorful cow sticking out its tongue.

To continue meeting demands of current and new customers, TVS & Dover Foods has expanded capabilities and capacity with new machines and quality equipment.  

TVS has installed and launched a single serve cup line. This exciting new capability allows us to package baking mixes into preformed cups, fill the specified volumes, and apply a heat seal film as a lid. Cup sizes range 2-6oz with up to 40 CPM, and the equipment can be utilized for either gluten-free or conventional products.

Dover Foods has been investing in upgrading machinery and new quality measures. The upgraded machines include a Triangle pillow-bag machine and a Triangle stand-up pouch machine. The stand-up pouches have more than doubled production rates from 10 bags a minute to 50 bags per minute!

A case erector was also installed. It was originally used at TVS but repurposed for Dover. This installation replaces manual labor of packaging cases at the end of the stand-up pouch machine. Quality has also seen a growth in new features. A new video jet lot coding has added new capabilities for printing and multi-lot formats. As well as new metal detectors at the end of both the pillow and stand-up pouch machines. Lastly, SpeeDee branded control check weighers were added to both the Triangle machines to control the weight per fill. They also have the ability to self correct 6-7 per minute.

All the new equipment and upgrades will continue producing Mountain Maid, American Quality Foods,  and other products for TVS and Dover Foods costumers.

Celebrating Michelle’s 15th Anniversary at TVS

Celebrating Michelle’s 15th Anniversary at TVS

Michelle Ekeanyanwu is celebrating her 15th anniversary at TVS. However, her career at TVS well before 15 years ago, in 1993. “I worked production folding boxes for DuPont before being promoted to a Material Handler,” she reflects. “I started at TVS because I needed flexible hours. I was a stay-at-home mom with children in daycare. It was important to have a job that could fit into my life.”

Michelle came back to TVS again in 2000, once again working in production and as a machine operator. In 2008, Michelle returned briefly to production before being promoted to quality. She said, “Quality lets my abilities shine!”

As a level II Quality Technician, her responsibilities include checking labels, lot codes, pallet movements, and production counts to ensure the product meets and exceeds the customer expectations. “My favorite part of the job is catching the little things that might be otherwise missed,” she said. “I want to be here and do a good job – it feels good.”

“Ever since I have known Michelle, she has been a hard worker. She has great attention to detail and is at the top of all our protocols,” reflects Quality Director Dan Fisher. “She is always asking good questions and bringing up other thought-provoking ideas.”

One of Michelle’s favorite parts of the job is the SQF (Safe, Quality, Food) Sensor Evaluation Panel. At different points throughout the year, Michelle bakes a panel of products such as pancakes or biscuits and bakes another panel of the products with intentional mistakes such as including mushroom powder or adding extra leavening. “The best reaction was when I offered Jeni Welch an intentionally messed up biscuit,” laughs Michelle. “She was so shocked that I was going to give her something bad on purpose.”

As TVS has grown, so has Michelle. Over the past few years, she has focused on Dietary Supplements. “I am proud that I have learned all the quality aspects of encapsulation,” Michelle said. “This line was very different from our other areas and had huge packets of paperwork to fill out. I was really determined to learn and perfect this area.”

She has also obtained numerous certifications to continue advancing her career and expertise.

“I am so proud of Michelle’s hard work and growth, especially in the dietary supplement side of our business,” said Quality Manager John Safi. “In the last two years we have produced over 160 million capsules and 1.5 million jars and canisters of dietary supplements and Michelle has been the lead on overseeing quality inspections for our new automated lines. I look forward to seeing her grow at TVS for many more years.”

Michelle’s world of high quality continues to her home. She recently purchased a home and applies her quality skills to inspect the house. “I am so much happier with how TVS is moving forward with business and employee care – both at TVS and at home,” she said. “It is because of TVS that I was able to purchase a home.”

When not caring for her new home or cutting the grass, Michelle enjoys photography and taking weekend trips with her kids for short getaways.

It’s not always about working at TVS. Michelle reflects on Christmas parties with Santa Claus and bringing her children to other work events.

“I remember a celebration of life for Tamara Meadows years ago,” she says with a smile. “We released balloons in the back field to honor her life, and one of the balloons got caught in a tree. It was able to get itself free, just like Tamara’s dedication and hard work in real life. I remember thinking, ‘What other company would stop the day to celebrate life?’”

Looking into the future, Michelle hopes to see quality have a stronger presence in other departments and to keep perfecting, or home in on, what each product needs.

“My advice after 15 years at TVS is, hang in there. TVS gives you the ability to do more, move jobs, and use your abilities,” Michelle says. “I am very happy to be here.”