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AIB looks to be $100M company

By Bethany Knipp

Associates from the Manhattan-headquartered food safety company AIB International announced this week that its goal is to become a $100 million company by its 100th year.

The deadline would be 2019, since AIB, formerly the American Institute of Baking, has been in business since 1919.

The announcement was made at an all-staff conference in Manhattan this week to which about 300 of AIB’s employees came for training from around the world.

AIB specializes in grain-based food industry safety, baking and food technical services, helping protect the food supply and working with companies like PepsiCo, ConAgra Foods and restaurant chains, including McDonald’s and Burger King, to do so.

“We provide the education and the knowledge and the handholding so that those folks can put the right structure and the right programs in place to help their food and beverage manufacturing,” AIB President Andre Biane said.

AIB International, Biane said, is currently a $36-$38 million company that has its Manhattan headquarters and four international offices in Australia, China, the United Kingdom and Mexico. Those offices incorporate a multitude of countries.

Biane said to meet the $100 million goal by its centennial, one of the things the company will have to do is bring in new talent. It’s expanded this year from 265 total employees to 303 employees.

He also said that AIB would have to connect with more companies around the world that it hadn’t had relationships with yet.

Anthony Raschke, the AIB general manager for the Asia Pacific office based in Brisbane, Australia, said the world is watching the United States regarding food safety, especially since the Food and Drug Administration’s Food Safety Modernization Act was signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2011. 

“There’s so many changes in the food industry at the moment,” Raschke said, citing FSMA and other FDA regulations. “That impacts my region so significantly and no other country in the world has a bigger impact on food safety than the U.S. has.”

Raschke said the developing world is looking to the United States and to companies like AIB for guidance, which is a moment of opportunity for the AIB.

“We have our tentacles in 140 different countries and to get into even more countries, that’s quite amazing to see how we’ve grown,” Raschke said.

Liliana Lopez, the general manager for AIB Latin American based in Queretaro, Mexico, said the company is ready to face the future.

“I can see that the people in each region are more integrated,” she said. “I can also see that the people are facing a lot changes, but a lot of challenges and they are motivated about that. They are excited. We want to be part of the change.”

Biane agreed.

“Little old company that’s headquartered in Manhattan, Kansas that has such a global reach and such an impact on food supply around the world is kind of cool,” Biane said.

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