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gallons of ice cream annually, attached to the largest freezer in the world (12 stories high, a city-block long and a halfblock wide), holding 53,000 pallets moved by robotics. Also at Le Mars is a second, smaller, ice cream plant and a fl uid milk facility. There is a yogurt plant in Omaha, Nebraska, and another ice cream plant in St. George, Utah. Wells’ has approximately 3000 employees nationwide. Its ice cream market is segmented by class of trade; Wal-Mart is its biggest retail customer, followed by C&S and Hy-Vee, and recently Wells’ expanded its business on the east coast with Wakefern Food Corp, and Wegmans Food Markets. The Foodservice Division’s major customers are Sysco Corporation and US Foodservice, who control about 40 percent of the total sales volume in the foodservice market, providing products to restaurants, hotels, cafeterias, schools and colleges, ice cream shops, health care facilities and catering companies. In the impulse channel, Blue Bunny is the fastest growing major brand by dollar velocity, which means more dollar sales growth per point of distribution in the convenience store trade, and is the top brand in street vending, resulting in Blue Bunny being on more than half of the ice cream trucks and push carts ringing throughout neighborhoods (a $400 million market sector in the US). “So we pride ourselves that for every channel we do business in, we’re supplying the market leader,” says Wells. Overall this year the company’s market share is up six percent in a sector that is down fi ve percent among “all-other” competitors. Mike Wells says strategy is key is to going forward. “We look at continuing trends in the marketplace; our stated goal is to be a top three national brand, and we say that because our research shows that unless we’re in the top three, we can’t deliver consistent sales and profi t, and especially in today’s business environment, sustainability is critical to any business. An interesting strategy has emerged, because although we do fi ve and ten year planning, strategy seems to be constantly evolving, and again, at the core is the need to eventually work our way towards a top three national brand status.” In November 07 Businessexcellence 43 WellsDairy Ellison Bakery specializes in custom developed baked goods to compliment or complete your ice cream or confection creation. Our job is to help you create innovative and great tasting new products. We offer a complete line of baked cookie products for ice cream sandwich cookies, inclusion pieces and small crunch products for bar coatings or crunchy pieces for candy inclusions. Ellison Bakery As long time providers of consistently high quality aseptic fruits/fl avors, Fruitcrown has a special relationship with Wells Dairy, fostered through our exclusive association with our technical sales partners, Brotech. The combination of Fruitcrown’s outstanding products/service and economics, together with Brotech’s unique cultured dairy product know-how and technical expertise is unbeatable, providing the best value available in the industry to Wells. Bell