The Northeast’s Leading Food Sales and Marketing Firm Celebrating September 30th Grand Opening
A.J. Letizio Sales & Marketing, with Al Letizio Jr. at the helm, has set sail on an expansion of its Foodservice business to expand its footprint thought the Northeast United States. With fortified ambition, new partners, The A.J. Letizio Management Team is executing on a game plan to ensure success in both the foodservice and retail for its customers and clients.
The New Hampshire-based food sales and marketing agency hopes to grow its business in food service and wholesale supply with the acquisition of Queens, NY-based company, Forgione Associates, whose reach and reputation in the Tri-State area became part of the A.J. Letizio family earlier this year. The Windham, NH based food sales and marketing firm is set to bring its unique portfolio of resources and proven success to the competitive New York Metro marketplace.
The merger will be marked by a week of celebration starting on September 30 with the opening of a renovated regional headquarters in Maspeth, New York. The move into Metro New York will be marked by a ribbon cutting and grand opening that included the Letizio family hosting partners, clients, employees, and the Metro New York restaurant and food service community at their spectacular new Empire State facility. With a full state of the art test kitchen, AJ Letizio has positioned their new facility to help its customer base of foodservice and retail professional source and create new menu solutions.
The partnership itself, between A.J. Letizio and Forgione Associates, has proven to be a perfect fit. “The more we talked to Forgione Associates, the more we realized that these people are like family to us,” Letizio excitedly said. “The combination of strengths between our two businesses, with their infrastructure, relationships, and talented employees, gave us a legitimate start in Metro. It was a match made in heaven.” And for Al Letizio Jr., culture and family are the keys to business.
Letizio, from a lineage that has been in the food business since the family came to America in 1912. Al spent his youth apprenticing at the family meat market—butchering meat, driving the delivery truck, and working in the warehouse. “My family has been in this business for five generations,” Letizio explained. “There’s a certain entrepreneurial spirit in our industry that makes it almost the last bastion of the Entrepreneurial American dream.” For Al Letizio Jr., that spirit was inescapable as he launched his own business career.
A.J. Letizio Sales & Marketing, for all of its regional growth, prides itself on being a business of relationships, where the company succeeds on the merit of daily conversations, trust, and good faith. In the last 20 years as the food sales and marketing industry trended towards the creation of national brokerage firms and cost-cutting, A.J. Letizio remained committed to those pillars to grow successfully despite the size of its new competitors.
“As everything shifted towards national business and commodity food sales, restaurateurs and the distributors that support them could see that bigger simply wasn’t better. They started to realize that the personal touch and accountability was being lost when some of those businesses get that big and spread so thin. This industry relies on human interaction that we have remained committed to providing and there’s no replacement for that personal touch in our relationships with our business partners,” Letizio said.
According to Letizio, with the advent of the “Mega-broker”, his company garnered a base of talented employees and regional business by raising wages and benefits where competitors were stagnant. Letizio’s vision for how he treats his team includes offering company cars, full health benefits, unlimited time off, and generous wages, in order to attract the best employees in the business.
For Metro New York’s restaurant, foodservice professionals and retailers, AJ Letizio also brings a key resource: “Menu Vision”. The company with a dozen plus chefs on staff has built a reputation for being able to recognize the difference between fads and trends: knowing when the business is changing. One trend that continues to impact food brokers and wholesale supply is the growth and interest in plant-based protein. Al Letizio Jr is all for it. “I think it’s important to stay up with new ideas, but you have to be disciplined enough to know what to put aside and where to spend your time and energy,” Letizio said, elaborating on his business philosophy. “Plant-based protein and environmentally-conscious food alternatives are an example that look like they’re here to stay.”
As the company continues its growth driven by selling and marketing menu solutions in the northeast region, its culture and business of building relationships remains unique. Where new trends and cost cutting sacrifices human service with increased popularity, A.J. Letizio, with its latest NYC expansion as evidence, is bucking the trend with a continued commitment to building and nurturing personal relationships.
To learn more about A.J. Letizio, visit their website.