Hughson Plant Reaches Century Mark

September 21, 2011

HUGHSON, Calif. – Dairy Farmers of America, Inc.’s (DFA) Hughson, Calif., plant has reached a significant milestone — 100 years of operation. Employees from the plant and DFA’s Western Area will celebrate the achievement with the community at the Hughson Harvest Festival and alumni football game this weekend.

“Our relationship with the community is incredibly important to us,” said Mike Zanos, Hughson plant manager. “The city and plant have grown together. It is truly a special opportunity to be able to celebrate a century of success with the people who helped make it possible.”

DFA’s Hughson plant will host a booth featuring dairy products, games and prizes at the Hughson Harvest Festival, providing community members the opportunity to learn more about the Cooperative and the unique history of the Hughson facility. DFA also will be honored at the alumni football game with a special ceremony taking place prior to the game.

H.E. Ross started the plant under the name Hughson Condensed Milk Company in 1911. As the area’s population increased, so did dairy demand. The facility’s location along a railroad was useful for shipping dairy, but proved to be disastrous when a railroad fire caused the plant to burn down in 1929. However, the facility was rebuilt shortly after. The plant changed owners and names nine times before becoming part of DFA in 1998.

“One constant throughout all 100 years has been the strong bond our plant shares with the community and local dairy farmers,” Zanos said. “With those relationships as a foundation, we hope to have 100 more exceptional years in Hughson.”

The Hughson facility is one of the Cooperative’s 27 wholly-owned manufacturing facilities. The plant’s 41 employees produce cream, butter, condensed skim milk and nonfat dry milk.

“The Hughson facility and its community have a deep connection,” said Glenn Wallace, chief operating officer of ingredients for DFA’s Global Dairy Products Group. “Community is one of DFA’s core values and it’s exciting to see the plant employees living out that value.”