I’m hoping you saw my post about Rudolph Foods. This looks like a very cool company and they’re sponsoring a contest here next week, and I’m going to review some samples as well. In the meantime, I wanted to learn more about the man behind Rudolph Foods.I’d really like to thank Sue from RMD Advertising who was instrumental in helping with the interview, and Mark Singleton – the man answering all those questions! ~DRR
1. How on earth did you get into the snack food business? Specifically – pork rinds?
Ever since I was a wee lad I wanted to be in the food business. The pork rind business was a lucky accident. Someone once wrote, “the purpose of food is to nourish our bodies, the power of food is to bring people together.” I like that a lot. Every week we make millions of people happy for about a buck…not many people can say that. After graduating from college, I worked for a consulting firm. One of my clients made food processing equipment. I joined them in 1992 as cice President and General Manager. We bought the company in 1996 and sold it in 2003. Rudolph Foods Company was one of our bigger customers and I joined them later that year. The rest is pork rind history.
2. For those who might not know – what is the difference between “rinds” and “cracklins”?
People have been eating pork rinds for more than 2,000 years. Remember nothing is wasted on a pig but the squeal! If you talk to whole hog BBQ pitmasters they will tell you the crackling is full of flavor and pulled pork is not the same with out it. The crackling is from the shoulder or ham skin of a pig and is made with fat attached. The rind is made from back and belly skins and has no fat attached. Both are great!
3. What’s your favorite snack?
My favorite snack is my daughter’s homemade chocolate chip cookies followed by our new Chili Limon Dipper Cracklins.
4. What’s the farthest your company has shipped an order?
We ship to more than 28 countries and to hundreds of customers. We have even managed to get rinds to our troops in countries around the world!
5. Do you think that you will stick with pork rinds and cracklins, or do you see diversification in your future?
We love our customers and are continuing to develop new snacks that we think will surprise and satisfy. Our Jalapeno Cheese Curls, Dulce Caliente Popcorn and Tropical Plaintains are just a few of the new snacks.
6. I hear you’re a hunter. What’s your favorite hunt?
This year marks the 50th anniversary I will be going deer hunting with my dad and the 27th year with my kids. We have been hunting on the same lease in south Texas for more than 30 years. As my mom says, we are “making memories”. We hunt about 11,000 acres of some of the finest whitetail country in Texas. We also have over a dozen Asian and African species. Lots of deer, food and campfire stories.
7. What’s the dream hunt on your wish list?
Cape Buffalo. I would love to hunt something so powerful! We have been hunting wild boars with knives for the last ten years or so and I would like to turn it up a notch.
8. Do you have distributors in the Southwest, or is the best way to purchase online?
We have distributors in most major cities in the south. You can find us in all Walmarts and customers can purchase online as well.
9. What is something about your business or products that might surprise my readers?
Pork rinds are 0 carbs, 0 trans fats, and high in protein! We contain more protein than a serving of peanuts.
A huge “Thank You” to Mark Singleton, VP of Marketing for Rudolph Foods for taking some time out to talk about himself and his company! You can check them out on Facebook too!