It all started in 1944, when teenaged brothers Israel and Melvin Tapick were challenged by a neighboring restaurant owner, a customer of their mother's corner store, to come up with six turkeys for Thanksgiving. Without any experience or knowledge of how to proceed, the young brothers agreed to Go the Extra Mile in developing a solution for their customer. The brothers somehow managed not only to procure six (live) turkeys amidst the wartime rationing and shortages, but more importantly, they figured out how to (ahem) prepare them for their restaurant customer – utilizing the concrete slab behind their mother’s corner store (and the conspicuous absence of city health codes in 1944 Houston). The restauranteur was so pleased with the brothers’ results, he paid them a whopping $12 – more than they could earn in a whole week as grocery delivery boys.
“A Family Tradition”
So began a nearly 80-year journey for Martin Foods, the family business that Israel and Melvin founded and named for their youngest brother, Martin (who never joined them, choosing instead to become a rabbi in New York City). In the early decades under the first generation of family leadership, Martin Foods blazed a trail first as a local processor and, later, as a regional further processor of fresh poultry – constantly innovating and reinventing their business model to adapt to the ever-changing needs of consumers. In the 1950s, Martin was the ﬁrst company in Houston to oﬀer fresh chicken parts to food service and retail customers, when frozen whole birds were the industry standard. In the 1960s and 70s, Martin was among the ﬁrst in Texas to service the emerging fast-food industry and one of the ﬁrst to oﬀer boneless, skinless chicken breast meat butchered fresh off the bone.
Beginning in the 1980s, Melvin’s son Michael took over as the second generation of family leadership for the company. Under Michael’s leadership, Martin Foods expanded to become the largest independent purveyor of Center of the Plate and specialty foods in the southwest, servicing fine dining, hotels and clubs throughout Texas. Following the Great Recession of 2007, Mike Tapick redirected the business model to encompass large scale beef and chicken further processing for QSR and Casual dining chains, with a specialty in marinated products. Between 2010 and 2020, Martin Foods more than doubled in size to become a national supplier for foodservice chains across the nation.
In 2017, Michael’s son Jeffrey Tapick took over as the third generation of Tapick family leadership. Martin successfully weathered the COVID-19 crisis and its devastating impact on the foodservice and hospitality industry, during which time the company pivoted away from its regional foodservice distribution model to focus solely on being a world-class manufacturer of value-added chicken and meat for foodservice, retail, and industrial clients.
A lot has changed at Martin over these past 80 years, but what remains the same is our caring family culture dedicated to Going the Extra Mile (“GTXM”) to develop and deliver protein solutions for our customers, along with our entrepreneurial mindset to stay nimble and adapt to the ever-changing needs of our industry.
Martin Family Values
What sets us apart in our industry is the caring culture of our Martin Family, and the trust our customers place in us to serve as a member of their team who looks out for their business as if it were our own. We are guided by the core values that collectively make us your Friend in the Protein Industry.
Do it Safely, period.
Treat everyone like Family, with Dignity, Courtesy, and Respect.
SOLVED BY SUNDOWN
Act now with urgency to get the job done right.
OWN THE OUTCOME
Roll up your sleeves and find the solution.
Listen and empathize from the Customer's point of view.
WIN AS ONE
Work together as a team to achieve our goals.
Go the extra mile in service to others.