Kemps LLC, manufactures and markets milk, ice cream and related dairy products under a variety of strong brands including Kemps, Hood, Hagan, Green's and Arrowhead. The company also manufactures a wide range of private label dairy products for major retail and food service customers. The company, with headquarters located in St. Paul, Minnesota, has over 1,450 employees serving customers in markets throughout the upper Midwest, New England, Mid Atlantic and Gulf States region.
Kemps operates four fluid processing facilities located in Duluth, Rochester and Minneapolis, Minnesota; and Cedarburg, Wisconsin: a cultured plant in Farmington, Minnesota; and ice cream facilities in Rochester, Minnesota and Suffield, Connecticut. The company also owns Beckers Dairy, a food service distributorship located in downtown Chicago.
Kemps is well known in the industry for introducing innovative new products and has received frequent recognition for a number of successful first to market product launches including Kemps Frozen Yogurt, Kemps Yo-J, and Kemps Squeezable Sour Cream.
Kemps serves a variety of customers including wholesale grocery, supermarkets, food service and institutional accounts. The company employs a direct sales force throughout its core marketing area and uses distributors and brokers in other parts of the country where Kemps products are sold.
Kemps is owned by HP Hood LLC based in Chelsea, MA. HP Hood purchased Kemps, and its sister company Crowley Foods, in April 2004.
In the late fifties, Kemps was a thriving community dairy serving Rochester, Minnesota and its surrounding area. As a result of a 1961 merger with Kemps of Minneapolis, Crescent Creamery of St. Paul, and Dolly Madison Dairies, servicing a significant segment of Wisconsin, Kemps became a stronger, more profitable dairy company able to focus on building market share throughout a much larger region.
From 1961 to 1967 the company doubled in size and then merged with Ward Foods, Inc., in 1968. Kemps grew rapidly over the next 20 years through a series of acquisitions of other dairies. And then in 1978, Wessanen of the Netherlands purchased Kemps from Ward Foods.
Kemps purchased Clover Leaf Creamery in 1979, a large Twin Cities fluid milk processor, followed by the purchase in 1980 of the Fairmont Foods dairy division with plants in Green Bay and Kewaskum, Wisconsin. The company also entered into a joint venture with AMPI at the Franklin Foods milk plant in Duluth, Minnesota. The company acquired Cedarburg Dairy, Inc., of Cedarburg, Wisconsin in 1993; and Brown's Velvet Ice Cream, New Orleans, Louisiana the same year. Becker's Dairy, a large distributor in the Chicago area, was acquired in 1998. In 1999 the company acquired Gillette and Nebraska Dairies, located in South Dakota and Nebraska, respectively. In 2000 Kemps acquired Oak Grove Dairy, headquartered in Norwood, Minnesota.
Kemps operates under the leadership of James B. Green, President and CEO. Mr. Green has been with Kemps since 1992 and was previously Vice President and General Manager of Crowley Frozen Desserts, Inc., a division of Crowley Foods, Inc., formerly located in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He joined Crowley after the company purchased Green's Dairy, his families' ice cream business. Mr. Green's management team includes Rachel Kyllo, Vice President of Marketing; Bob Williams, Vice President of Operations: Greg Kurr, Vice President of Sales; Vinith Poduval, Director of Quality Assurance; Christopher Thorpe, Vice President of Financial Services; and Cindy Trousdale, Vice President of Business Services.