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Our History

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Rose and Jim Lipari

Our History: In the early 1950’s Jim Lipari began distributing unique products from the back of his Ford station wagon. Through the following years Jim worked as a meat cutter and operated a full line grocery store. Jim and his partner created their own barbecue sauce called Bazzo’s. On Jim’s days off he would load up the station wagon with Bazzo’s and work a sales route. Soon after Jim created and began selling Bella Mia Spaghetti Sauce. In 1963 Jim formed Lipari Food Distributors in order to continue distributing Bazzo’s and Bella Mia. Other products continued to be added to the Lipari product line, but Jim’s big break came in 1967 when Frank’s Tea & Spice appointed Lipari as their distributor. Jim was soon known as the “spice man” and his customer base included many independent supermarkets.

lipari-bazzosIn 1971, Jim’s son Thom started working at Lipari Foods. With the purchase of their second building came two walk-in coolers. Soon the addition of cheese, ham and salami started Lipari Food Distributors in the deli business. As Lipari continued to master the deli business they moved to their third location for expanded space. In 1983 Thom had an idea to sell frozen dough to bakeries. Lipari was the first company in southeastern Michigan to market in-store frozen dough to bakeries and independent grocers.

lipari-historyIn 1995, Lipari moved once again to accommodate sales and product expansion. Over the past 15 years Lipari Foods has experienced tremendous growth. The growth has come in many forms: acquisitions of distribution businesses, partnerships with several wholesale warehouses, and product expansion into packaging, seafood, and confections. In 2006 Lipari Foods built its current facility to customize space, technology, and accommodate anticipated future growth.

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Service will continue to be the driving force behind the Lipari commitment to our customers.