What is in this article?:
- Cost share sweetens deal for pecan producer
- Cleaning, quality checks
• With an equipment cost share award from the N.C. Value-Added Cost Share Program (NCVACS), Alan Bundy is adding seemers — equipment that seals pecan containers — and a 34-foot chocolate coating machine to his operation in June 2011.
• By bringing the entire production process under one roof, Bundy hopes that the chocolate-coated portion of his business — already 40 percent of all sales — will continue to grow as demand increases.
Cleaning, quality checks
Once harvested, the pecans undergo rigorous cleaning and quality checks.
All of Elizabeth’s pecans are processed and cooked by hand rather than run through a machine in mass amounts. The company has six permanent positions, but staffs 20 or more during the peak season in fall.
Named for Bundy’s daughter, Elizabeth’s Pecans has evolved and expanded over the years. It started in 1981 when Bundy’s father, Captain Bobby F. Bundy, established Capt’n Bundy’s Pecan Farm in Turkey, N.C.
The success of Capt’n Bundy’s led to the processing company, B & B Pecan Processors of North Carolina, Inc., a father-son venture.
Beginning in 1997, the business expanded into pecan candies, particularly a “softer than usual” pecan brittle that launched the company in a new direction. Not long after the introduction of his pecan brittle, Alan Bundy created Elizabeth’s Pecan Products to produce and sell a variety of chocolate-coated and other pecan treats.
Today, the company offers a variety of pecan snacks, roasted pecan syrup, holiday samplers and corporate gift baskets, in addition to the chocolate-coated products.
Bundy says the company is already taking a long look at chocolate-coated blueberries as the next potential value-added venture.
Elizabeth’s Pecan Products is available in more than 120 stores in North Carolina and has been sold in all 50 states and 14 countries.
NCVACS is coordinated by N.C. MarketReady, the Cooperative Extension outreach of the North Carolina State University Plants for Human Health Institute, located at the North Carolina Research Campus.
Funded by the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission and the Family Farm Innovation Fund (2010), the cost share program was launched in 2009 to encourage more North Carolina producers to apply for federal funding and to generate more competitive applications.
For more information on Elizabeth’s Pecan Products visit www.elizabethspecans.com.