Learn all about our company! A brief history.
Andy and Rachel Berliner are the founders of Amy’s Kitchen. Here they recount a quick history of how Amy’s came to be and where it is now.
We didn’t set out to become the leading natural frozen food brand in the USA, or ever expect to be an international company. All we wanted to do was create a business that would allow us to earn a living by providing convenient and tasty natural vegetarian meals for people like ourselves, who appreciated good food, but were often too busy to cook "from scratch."
We started on a "shoestring," using our own house and ranch in California, USA, as headquarters. The founding meetings were held in the same room where we were married and where our daughter Amy was born.
This was in 1987, before the idea of organic, natural, and healthy food had become well known, and when there were very few frozen meals available for vegetarians to eat, either in health food stores or supermarkets. We were, however, very fortunate in being in the right place at the right time. The number of vegetarians had increased dramatically, as had consumer awareness of the harmful effects on their health and the environment of chemicals in the food supply.
Our first product, a vegetable pot pie, was an instant success.
Other products followed in rapid succession, and we made the amazing discovery that they were being eaten not only by vegetarians and those interested in natural foods, but by millions of people looking for easy to prepare meals that really tasted good.
Since then Amy’s Kitchen has created over 200 frozen meals and ambient products, including pizzas, pocket sandwiches, pot pies, entrées, snacks and whole meals. We also began producing a gluten free line for those with gluten intolerances, and expanding our vegan options. In 1999, we introduced a grocery line that now includes canned soups, beans and chili as well as jarred pasta sauces and salsas. These products are now available all over the United States in every grocery store and health food shop.
Although we have considerably expanded our production facilities and the number of people we employ, we have remained a family owned and operated business, sensitive to the needs of our consumers.
Our exciting expansion into the UK and Europe.
Over the years, we began receiving letters from consumers from the UK who had lived in the US at some point in their life and fallen in love with our products. They wished that they could get them back home and asked that we consider selling them in the UK. For quite a few years, we simply shipped a small amount over from the states to sell in some health food shops. However, we always knew this was a temporary solution because shipping product all the way from the US doesn’t fit with our ethic of sustainable local production.
Finally, in 2010, the stars aligned and we decided to truly launch our products in the UK. We sent over a small team, including our nephew Paul Schiefer and daughter Amy, to open up a factory in the UK. The factory opened around Christmas of 2010, and we are now producing and selling about 40 Amy’s Kitchen Products in the UK! We have about 50 employees in our UK factory, making the products by hand with the same care and love that we do in the US.
Starting this fall, we will also be launching into France and Germany, all based from our wonderful office and factory in Corby, Northamptonshire. Although we are still young in the UK, we are growing quickly and our goal is that soon you will be able to find us at almost any store in the country!