Wisconsin-based c-store operator Kwik Trip is working to increase its diversity of fresh and ready-to-serve food products by contracting a local healthcare provider’s food safety division to monitor its product lines, the Wausau Daily Herald reported.
The preparation and delivery of Kwik Trip’s products, which are made fresh daily at the new Kwik Trip commissary facility near La Crosse, Wis., will be monitored by Marshfield Clinic’s food safety division, the newspaper reported.
"Since we make a lot of our own products and are expanding our product lines, we thought it was in our company’s best interest to partner with a health facility that is known for its strong emphasis in public health," said Jay Ellingson, director of Kwik Trip’s food safety division.
Marshfield’s food safety division has the only laboratory of its kind in the nation owned and operated by a healthcare facility.
"The company is growing in the food area, and we want to do it right," Ellingson said. "We are making some great quality products with good value – homemade soups, take-home meals.”
The La Crosse, Wis.-based convenience store chain owns more than 350 stores in the Midwest. It will make its new products, dubbed Kitchen Cravings, available at Kwik Trip stores across Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa, Ellingson said.
"These are truly ma- and pa-type meals with nutritional labels," he said. "The Clinic’s lab will do the nutritional analysis and the microbial monitoring. We want the taste and nutritional values to be there."
Marshfield Clinic’s food safety division conducts routine testing of products for a number of companies throughout the Midwest. Besides federal- and state-mandated regulations, the Clinic’s facility will also provide testing that isn’t mandated but will help ensure the quality and safety of Kwik Trip’s products.