KLN Family Brands is a company located in Perham, Minnesota that manufactures a diverse and expanding range of human and pet food products that adapt to customer preferences. Two manufacturing companies are under the KLN Family Brands umbrella: Tuffy’s Pet Foods and Kenny’s Candy & Confections. Whether the products are intended for those on two legs or those on four, KLN Family Brands strives to make each and every product exceptional.
What’s in a name? “KLN” are the initials of CEO Kenny Nelson, one of the founding members of the business. Kenny is the son of Tuffy’s Pet Foods founder, Tuffy Nelson, and the father of KLN President, Charlie Nelson.
Kenny’s success in building our company is exceeded only by his commitment to his employees and community. He has always believed that “family” is the most important part of the company’s name. Why? Because it’s family that speaks to who we are: a family-owned company, producing quality brands & products for families by a team of dedicated employees in a family-friendly community.
Following are the employee-generated Core Beliefs that determine our daily behaviors and decision-making approach at Tuffy's Pet Foods:
Every person associated with KLN Family Brands has unique strengths and talents. With 550+ employees, KLN Family Brands understands that a satisfied work force is essential for short and long-term success in our business and community. KLN invests in employee success through training, internal promotion, outstanding health care/wellness programs, an on-site clinic and profit sharing. Employees, in turn, are expected to perform with strength-based skill-sets, an internally-driven work ethic and sense of personal responsibility for a job well done. We consider this give and take to be a fair exchange with men and women of integrity, who hold hopes and dreams for themselves and their families. These basics of relationship-building have allowed the company immense growth since its humble beginnings when Tuffy Nelson first set up shop in 1947.
The KLN reputation is based on the quality of the product. It can take decades to build a reputation and mere seconds to lose it. We recognize this life rule with the development of every product we make. KLN employees take pride in consistently producing the highest quality products; commitment to excellence and food safety standards are a priority. We proudly state that both companies have received only “A” and “A+” ratings from BRC (British Retail Consortium, a Global Food Safety Standard). Achieving outstanding quality requires focused, well trained employees, quality ingredients and processes, as well as clean and modern facilities (our facilities are truly world class). Customers trust the KLN brand to consistently deliver high quality products. We appreciate that trust and recognize its importance to our present and future success.
Kenny Nelson once said, “Some people strive to think outside of the box; I’m sorry, but I don’t see the box”. And so it is with KLN Family Brands. We work daily to be “aggressive and progressive” in our goal to be the best, most trusted company in the industry. We are an “idea” company not bogged down by corporate structure. Rather, we have a team approach that empowers employees to think and act. We celebrate a culture where innovation and creativity are rewarded, smart work is expected, and passion is the fuel for change.
Past: The post WWII boom produced men and women who yearned for a better future for their children. These people stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Tuffy Nelson when he opened Pine Lakes Feed in 1947 and later Tuffy’s Pet Foods in 1964. They believed in his dream even if a pay check at the end of the work week wasn’t a guarantee. The sweat-equity and dreams of those early risk-takers gave birth to KLN Family Brands, and their spirit continues to guide the company today.
Present: Today, KLN Family Brands employs a modern-day workforce that exhibits the time-honored work qualities that launched the company. Although automated controls and equipment are vital to the manufacturing process today, great products still require engaged people with the savvy to operate them. We strive to provide a safe and respectful atmosphere that makes coming to work rewarding for our employees.
Future: KLN Family Brands will move forward with a nod to our history, an appreciation for our present success, and a commitment to enhancement and expansion of our products through a culture of innovation and creativity. Further, we will continue to share our success with our employees and community.
“What good are we if we aren’t trying to make a difference?” That’s the philosophy of KLN Family Brands President Charlie Nelson. At KLN Family Brands our team believes that giving back to the community and beyond is as important for the giver as it is for the recipient.
KLN Family Brands blends passion and compassion to make a difference in the lives of people in our community, region, state and country. We are committed to local schools, food pantries, the Boys and Girls Club, Kinship, the children’s weekend Backpack Program to fight hunger, University of Minnesota, Mayo Clinic, American Cancer Society, Cystic Fibrosis, Rescue Dog, ALS and many other worthy endeavors. In 2016 KLN Family Brands pledged $1,000,000 over 5 years to the Pinky Swear Foundation, a Minnesota-based organization that provides financial and emotional assistance to families affected by pediatric cancer.
We’re proud that our great products are “Made in the USA.” We’re just as proud that we are able to use our success to help dozens of worthy organizations and causes that improve our world.
If you come to work with us, buy, sell or distribute our products, you now have a brief understanding of KLN Family Brands: who we are, where we’ve been and where we are going. If we already have a relationship with you, let’s keep it strong and vibrant. If we haven’t met, let’s change that; one person at a time, one business transaction at a time….for the long haul. That’s what families do.
Come to the Greater Lakes Area of Perham, Minnesota, and see for yourself how one company and one community can make a difference.