Nestled in the quaint town of Honesdale, Pennsylvania lies The Alpine Wurst & Meat House, a staple in the community for over 40 years. Known for crafting premium German meats and sausages, The Alpine prides itself on old-world flavors and family recipes perfected by founder Klaus and kept alive by the following generations.
The Shelf-Life Challenge
At the heart of The Alpine is their butcher shop, where only the highest quality cuts are hand-selected to produce over 90 artisanal sausages, smoked meats, pates, and more. Owner Mark Eifert learned the ancestral art of German butchery and charcuterie from his father Klaus, striving to keep the tradition alive through their specialty offerings.
However, one challenge loomed over this heritage brand – the extremely short 2-3 week shelf life of their fresh sausages without additives. Preservatives would alter the product’s clean label and compromise quality. Despite rave reviews, distribution could not scale beyond the local community.
Bringing HPP In-House
That was until Mark discovered high pressure processing (HPP) – an innovative technology that uses intense water pressure to eliminate harmful pathogens and extend shelf-life naturally. After successfully using an HPP tolling provider, the proof was in the proverbial pudding ( or sausage in this case) – their sausage’s shelf life increased nearly 6x, granting access to mainstream retailers throughout New York and Connecticut.
Given exceptional demand, The Alpine took the bold step to purchase their own HPP machine – becoming the first specialty food manufacturer in the region to bring this promising technology in-house. This investment provides full control over the HPP process while slashing expensive shipping and transportation costs. In-house HPP capabilities have also opened up revenue streams from offering tolling services to other small food businesses seeking to tap into the technology.
Additionally, owning the HPP equipment has had a transformative impact on The Alpine’s distribution and product offerings. Their sausage shelf-life has stretched from just 2-3 weeks to an impressive 4 months, fueling expansion from local shelves to over 350 mainstream supermarket retailers.
Thanks to the quality and heritage of Alpine, a small-town shop aims to become America’s most trusted supplier of premium German delicacies. HPP has been instrumental in Mark’s mission to honor his family legacy by spreading old-world flavors beyond the hills of rural Pennsylvania.