Traditions Built Wheel By Wheel

Guggisberg Cheese Factory

It's easy to become complacent in business when your products are flying off the shelves; the hard part comes after the novelty has worn off. Richard explains how a better sales strategy helped elevate the Guggisberg Cheese Factory.

Where Traditions Are Built Wheel By Wheel


Richard Guggisberg
Guggisberg Cheese Factory
When my father introduced Baby Swiss in the 1960s, it was a big hit. And when you have a product that everybody wants, running a business is easy. But at some point, the novelty wears off. You have to figure out what you can do to keep it your business growing.
We chose offer more products and to examine how our sales were being conducted. This led us to put a formal sales force in place to help increase our distribution.
It’s easy to put a salesperson on the road, but it’s a whole other ballgame when you understand how those sales are being conducted, how your products are being marketed and how the food distribution system works throughout the country.
Being able to manage all of these moving pieces is not something that you’re going to become an expert in over the course of a few months or even a year. It’s a long steady process that can only happen one step at a time.
In addition to formalizing our sales force, we are also beginning to manufacture products that we’ve lacked the market for in the past. Think of the cheeses traditionally found over in Europe, surface-ripened cheeses that have a pungent odor.
The American palate is changing. People are beginning to want something unique and different. There’s a willingness to try new things now, especially among the younger generation.
There’s a lot of tradition in this part of Ohio and we are proud to keep that tradition alive. Even as we continue to add new varieties of cheeses and expand our reach, our company will continue to be guided by our ability to manufacture a quality product.

Guggisberg Cheese Factory
Nestled in the heart of Ohio’s Amish Country, where cheese manufacturing has become an art form, is the Guggisberg Cheese Factory. Founded in 1950 by Alfred Guggisberg, the cheese manufacturer is regarded as the birthplace of Baby Swiss.
Milestones
  • Founded: 1950
  • Introduces Baby Swiss: 1968
  • Alfred passes the business on to his son, Richard: 1985
  • Acquires Deutsch Kase House in Middlebury, Ind: 2009
  • Purchases Sugarcreek facility: 1995
Client
Richard Guggisberg
president Guggisberg Cheese Factory
Advisory Team
principal (Millersburg office), Rea & Associates
principal (Millersburg office), Rea & Associates