Answers to our Seven Questions!
(1) Where is your food canned? Do you have a color brochure of your facility?
Our Answer: Our food is all canned in Sebastopol, Ca., by Vacu-Dry®, the corporation that owns the Perma Pak® brand label. We traditionally refer to our company by the Perma Pak® label, as a more familiar name. We do have a color brochure which will show the Vacu-Dry® facility. If you want one, we will need your name and address.
(2) How long has your company been in business? How long have you personally been selling food? (A short time will indicate a lack of experience.)
Our Answer: Perma Pak® went into business in 1953. Forty five years ago. My partner and I have both been distributors for Perma Pak® since May of 1987, over 11 years ago. Twenty two years, if you combine our experience.
(3) How is your food canned? (If they are not vacuum and nitrogen packed, but just have an oxygen absorber, they are not canned in the best way available.)
Our Answer: All of the low moisture dry foods that are canned by Vacu Dry® are vacuum packed with nitrogen replacing the oxygen. The oxygen is evacuated leaving the oxygen residual at less than 1%. For good measure, we also include an oxygen absorber packet, which is the only thing most companies do. These are the companies this question was intended to address. However, the foods that do not require additional drying, because they were already dry (such as wheat, beans, and other grains, and grain related products) do not need the vacuum-nitrogen packing system. The oxygen absorber will work fine for those particular products. We have them packed in Mylar bags, and house the Mylar bags in heavy duty plastic buckets.
(4) How big is your company? Are there any public records about them? Are they publicly traded on the stock exchange? (The more you can learn about the company, the better.)
Our Answer: Vacu Dry® is huge. It is the largest canner of low moisture foods in the United States. They are a publicly traded company on a major stock exchange, which makes their records pretty much public knowledge, and certainly so to any of their stock holders. The major firms that review publicly traded companies would of course have evaluations and recommendation of their own.
(5) Do you have a quality control department? If so, how well is it staffed, and how often is food rejected? (Ask about their guarantees.)
Our Answer: Certainly Vacu-Dry® has a quality control department. A publicly traded company has more stringent requirements to live up to, unlike the smaller, local companies. There are nine staff members in the quality control department. They make certain the food that is received meets our standards. If the food doesn't measure up, it is rejected and returned to the supplier. Just as important as the quality of the food, the canning process itself is carefully monitored to be sure the food is canned properly. All of the equipment has to be within fine tolerances, or we couldn't guarantee the seal on the cans would hold. Machinery calibrations are checked regularly, and adjustment made immediately, with the food re-canned if necessary. In no way will the quality control personnel release food until they are assured of it's quality, and effective canning. Most companies don't have even one quality control inspector, nor do they check their machinery for needed recalibrations, unless something is so obvious that it breaks down and has to be repaired.
In an average year, Perma Pak's® Quality Control staff rejects enough food to feed approximately 1300 people.
We guarantee replacement of any food that is found to be canned improperly, which has thus affected the storage life, the taste, and quality of the food.
(6) How much of your food do you dehydrate as a company, and how much is from other sources?
Our Answer: Vacu-Dry® actually dries all of their own fruits. The other products are obtained from long standing contracts they have with dryers of other food selections. These contracts are all based on the same quality standards Vacu-Dry maintains for the drying of their own fruits. There are over 400 companies in the United States that specialize in the drying of food. Some of them are excellent, and some are not. That is why Perma Pak's® experience, long standing corporate relationships, and iron clad contracts really protects the Perma Pak® customer. In those instances where products were received that did not met those standards, the shipment was immediately rejected and returned to the supplier. We assume those foods were then resold and canned by other canners of low moisture foods. In any case, Vacu-Dry® does all of their own canning, trusting only their own procedures.
Emergency Food Storage Solutions is an authorized Perma Pak®
Perma Pak® is a registered trademark of Vacu-dry Company