MADE IN ILLINOIS: Hungry for More

Ever had a chicken nugget or picked up some pre-sliced deli meat? You know those tiny slips of paper in between premade patties? Of course you do. Provisur Technologies is a company you probably have never heard of, but their products are ingrained in our national food culture.

Provisur is a classic story of American ingenuity; the company was started in a garage in Mokena, Illinois by Lou Richards in 1970. Now, Provisur is a worldwide leader in manufacturing food processing, slicing, grinding, forming, and packaging machines, delivering products to over 100 countries.  Back in 1970 the company went by the name Formax, and many of its products are still known today by that name. From its inception, the company has grown, spurred on by its partnership with McDonalds and revolutionary products, and was brought under the umbrella of Provisur, a company that houses six of the leading food processing brands.

The company, always looking to keep improving and innovating, recently opened a new Ingenuity Center in Mokena where customers can create their ideal machine line right on the spot. Not one to stick to the Ford assembly line model, each Provisur product is the responsibility of a single technician and should any problems with that product arise, Provisur sends the employee that manufactured it anywhere in the world to get the product back up and running.

“I have known about Provisur and its reputation in the community for years” State Rep. Margo McDermed said, “but this was my first chance to see their impressive facilities. I loved seeing how proud everyone, from the plant manager to the technicians, is of their machines and their work.  It’s rare that a company provides this kind of quality product and, further still, this kind of customer service.”

The plant in Mokena employs 212 people. The company, along with others in the field, is looking to open a food manufacturers school in conjunction with DeVry and ITT Tech to compensate for a workforce that lacks the necessary mechanical knowledge and skills. Provisur and other leading companies have pledged to hire the first 100 graduates.