In 1907, Otto Kolschowsky immigrated to America and took up residence in Chicago. Within two years, Kolschowsky had opened a butcher shop catering to the German population of Chicago’s West Side.
By the end of the first World War in 1918, Otto had brought his two sons, Arthur and Harry, into the business, opened a secondary wholesale meats operation, and renamed the business Otto & Sons.
In 1955, Ray Kroc opened the first McDonald’s franchise in Des Plaines, Illinois. Otto & Son’s wholesale branch, long known for quality meats, was chosen as their supplier of hamburger patties. As McDonald’s grew, so did Otto & Sons.
By 1973, Otto & Sons were the main suppliers for McDonald restaurants in Illinois. To accommodate McDonald’s, their central customer, Otto & Sons created a state-of-the-art processing plant in West Chicago, Illinois. The plant used liquid nitrogen to flash freeze hamburger patties, enabling Otto & Sons to transport them over greater distances and have them arrive still fresh. Two years later, Otto & Sons was renamed OSI Industries. Two years after that, in 1977, OSI Industries opened a plant in West Jordan, Utah. Learn more about OSI at zoominfo.com
The OSI expansion continues, to Germany in the 70s, to Spain, Brazil, Taiwan, and Austria in the 80s, to Mexico, Philippines, China, Hungary, Poland, Australia, and the United Kingdom in the 90s.
In the meantime, OSI Industries expanded into new products, purchasing an Oakland, Iowa plant to produce bacon, sausage, and hot dogs. It expanded its poultry production capacity in Europe, Brazil, China, and the USA, fresh produce in China, beef production in Australia and Japan. In California, OSI Industries built a plant to process salsa, beans, and tofu products.
In 2011, OSI Industries opened a Culinary Innovation Center in Aurora, Illinois. Taking advantage of the giant consumer market in India, OSI now has a frozen vegetable processing facility in Madanapalle, India. By the time OSI had completed the changeover, they had gone from one of more than a hundred McDonald’s suppliers to one in four.
Rapidly approaching retirement, Chairman of the Board and CEO Sheldon Lavin, has won numerous awards for efficiency, innovation, environmental sustainability, and the introduction of cutting-edge technology.