In this edition:
TMG Named One of Canada’s Best Managed Companies For Second Consecutive Year
For a second consecutive year, TMG was recognized for our industry-leading performance, global business practices, and sustained growth by receiving the prestigious 2023 Canada’s Best Managed Companies award.
Celebrating its 30th anniversary, Canada’s Best Managed Companies program awards excellence in private Canadian-owned companies with revenues of $50 million or greater. To attain the designation, companies are evaluated on their leadership in the areas of strategy, culture and commitment, capabilities, innovation, and governance.
“Celebrating our successes is not just about recognizing our accomplishments, but also acknowledging the hard work, dedication, and resilience of our team members who have made this possible,” said Krystal Darling, CEO of TMG. “Together, we have faced challenges head-on, persevered through tough times, and remained steadfast in our pursuit of excellence. This award is a direct reflection of the strength and spirit of our team, and I am proud to stand among them as we continue to achieve great things.”
Canada’s Best Managed Companies is one of the country’s leading business awards programs recognizing innovative and world-class businesses. Every year, hundreds of entrepreneurial companies compete for this designation in a rigorous and independent evaluation process.
Applicants are evaluated by an independent panel of judges with representation from program sponsors and special guests.
“Being recognized for a second year is a testament to our unwavering commitment to excellence, innovation, and growth,” said Ryan Martin, Chairman of TMG. “We are humbled and honoured to be part of this esteemed community of exceptional organizations, and we pledge to continue driving positive change and delivering value to our customers and stakeholders.”
The 2023 cohort of Best Managed Companies shares common themes such as having a peoplecentric culture, targeting effective ESG strategies, and accelerating operational digitization.
“This year’s Best Managed winners displayed courage, resourcefulness, and creativity as they explored new avenues for advancement,” said Derrick Dempster, Partner, Deloitte Private and Co-Leader, Canada’s Best Managed Companies program. “We’re extremely proud to recognize the impressive achievements of companies such as TMG in this, particularly rapidly evolving business world. Their successes demonstrate the importance of strong leadership and forethought in driving long-term growth.”
SKILLED TRADES EXCELLENCE
TMG Awarded Group Sponsorship Grant from the Government of Ontario
As an industry leader in supporting and developing this country’s finest tradespeople, TMG is honoured to announce that we have been awarded a Group Sponsorship Grant (GSG) for Skilled Trades, presented by the Ontario government.
The GSG program supports companies that foster collaboration, innovation, and inclusion in Ontario’s labour market. Financial support from this grant addresses challenges in Ontario’s apprenticeship and skilled trades system, relating to increasing the supply of skilled trades workers, encouraging apprenticeship programs, improving training, and addressing pandemic-related impacts.
As a single entity comprised of multiple skilled trades, including fabrication, machining, millwrighting, and electrical, the GSG will support TMG in increasing the supply of skilled trades workers and growing the message of skilled trades positivity in Canada. With the support of the Ontario Government, initiatives will include additional mentorship and support for apprentices, increased recruitment and retention of skilled tradespeople, and further safety training for employees. This grant will also play a significant role in our efforts to increase support for women in skilled trades and underrepresented groups in the industry. TMG is thrilled to be given the opportunity to better support skilled trades in our country and is thankful to the Ontario government for making this possible.
Skilled Trades Centre of Excellence
With the recent purchase of Tri-Mach’s 45,000 sq ft. facility in Elmira, ON, TMG’s Skilled Trades Centre of Excellence has now relocated. With additional practical and classroom space, this new facility allows TMG to strengthen our ability to develop the top-skilled tradespeople of tomorrow.
The Skilled Trades Centre of Excellence offers trade apprentices both in the classroom and in hands-on settings to learn and develop their skills. Complete with welding booths, electrical equipment, and more, this facility recreates the variables tradespeople experience in the field with increased safety and oversight. Led by internal Training Manager Dale Lahey, the goal of this program is to develop our apprentices and expand the accessibility of skilled trades to our community. Furthermore, the program’s comprehensive mentorship provides an opportunity for tradespeople to study and practice for their trade exams.
“Our goal is to create the best-skilled tradespeople in this country,” said Krystal Darling, CEO of TMG. “This Centre of Excellence expansion is a testament to our dedication to developing and supporting our team.”
Speaking of Recessions…
How to safeguard your operation and prepare for the possibility of a recession in the unpredictable coming months.
The genesis of COVID-19 created increased government spending, global supply chain issues, labour shortages, and rising inflation rates. During this global pandemic, a war in Eastern Europe has elongated these macroeconomic effects. If there’s been one constant, it’s volatility. Over the course of 2023, processors will face headwinds from consumers uncertain about lingering inflation, geopolitical issues, and a looming recession. These challenges are in stark contrast to the pantry-loading days of the pandemic and come only shortly after these businesses were finally able to pass surging costs for ingredients, logistics, and labour to the end consumer.¹
How should food processors look ahead under these uncertain conditions?
An economic recession in 2023 is still possible. However, if that happens, inflation will likely go away sooner rather than later due to the decline in consumer
demand that a recession usually precipitates. Food, beverage, and agricultural companies will have a more challenging time raising prices to retailers and wholesalers because of increased scrutiny by retailers.²
An unpredictable future is the only certainty for the global supply chain. Processors will diversify their raw material and supplier options further in 2023 to compensate for supply disruptions. As such, suppliers will need to meet demand as accurately as possible to ensure smooth operations and optimize production.³
AUTOMATION & TECHNOLOGY IS THE ANSWER
The need for skilled workers prevails. Labour issues continue to intensify as workers who left during COVID do not return. Meanwhile, there continues to be a need for more younger workers to join the industry. The adoption of automation will help fill this void, requiring more skilled trades to build automation systems and utilizing AI technology to remove unskilled work with organizations.
There are several ways a manufacturing company may benefit from focusing on automation & AI technology:
Employees now have more time to work on jobs that call for high-level thinking, as automation does the tedious jobs. Additionally, removing employees from hazardous settings demonstrates that the business sees them as valuable assets whose welfare is a top priority.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, firms spend nearly $170 billion annually on injuries and illnesses. Additionally, businesses can save these expenditures by 20 percent to 40 percent by merely enhancing safety protocols.
Automation produces uniform quality, streamlines, and reduces waste. In addition, the maintenance cost is far lower than continuing to pay for the current procedures, even though you may have to pay a high upfront price.⁴
1. 2023 food and beverage industry outlook (rsmus.com)
2. Five hot topics as US food industry enters 2023 (just-food.com)
3. Automation and supply chain agility ‘will shape sector’ in 2023 (fruitnet.com)
4. What Does 2023 Hold for the Food Processing Industry? (foodmanufacturing.com)
Canadian Food Innovation Network Grant
If you just read the recession article on the left and are now considering automation for your operation, why not start by looking at the implementation cost savings?
The Canadian Food Innovation Network (CFIN) Grant is a funding opportunity designed to support food-related research and innovation in Canada. The grant is administered by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and is aimed at supporting businesses developing new technologies, products, and processes in the food and beverage industry.
The CFIN Grant provides funding for projects that aim to develop innovative food products, improve food safety and quality, increase efficiency in food processing, and reduce food waste. The grant is available to Canadian companies that are actively engaged in food-related research and innovation.
The amount of funding available through the CFIN Grant varies depending on the specific project and its needs. Applicants can apply for up to $200,000 in funding for a project, and the funding can be used to cover expenses related to research and development, equipment, and other project-related costs.¹
Overall, the CFIN Grant is an important funding opportunity for organizations that are looking to drive innovation in their sector and improve the quality of Canada’s food supply.
1. CFIN (cfin-rcia.ca)
Tri-Mach Automates Patty Packaging
A large manufacturer of pre-cooked and ready-to-cook meat products based out of Ohio, USA, recently expanded their processing facility, adding new spiral ovens and freezers to produce beef patties. Requiring an end-of-line sanitary solution to package the final product, this customer reached out to Tri-Mach’s experts for our industry expertise and sanitary knowledge.
The project scope included three separate systems needed to transfer, weigh, package, and quality check products, maintaining the highest sanitary standards possible. Offering a full turn-key solution, Tri-Mach’s experts created a custom solution from design to installation, offering the customer a single touchpoint throughout the project.
Included in the systems was a series of Ever-Kleen® SL2 conveyors, used to transfer product from the freezer to the metal detectors, as well as a manual bypass conveyor used to skip the scale, offloading product down a spiral chute to a floor pack-off station. A vibratory feed system guided the product into the bucket scale system, eliminating manual intervention from the weighing and packaging process. Incline bucket conveyors were incorporated to bring a bypassed product from the floor level back into circulation before the metal detector checkpoint.
To maximize production capacity in the facility, Tri-Mach’s experts created this solution on top of custom large-scale Ever-Kleen® platforms, allowing the customer to incorporate a continuous box-filling line below the platforms to optimize their existing production footprint. These innovative platforms were equipped with integrated wash racks to hold all components of the bucket scales while being cleaned.
With the customer’s expansion timeline being pushed up to meet market demands, Tri-Mach was required to expedite the project to ensure they were able to achieve production requirements sooner. With all systems installed by Tri-Mach’s expert millwrights now fully operational, the customer has drastically increased product throughput while decreasing manual labour and washdown time.
Advance Millwrights & Industrial Contracting Solutions Make Ship (Offloading) Happen
One of Canada’s largest crop input distributors specializing in dry and liquid fertilizers recently upgraded their existing ship offloading operation in Hamilton, ON, looking to increase throughput. Knowing the equipment would need to operate through rough, corrosive conditions, the customer contacted Advance Millwrights & Industrial Contracting Solutions (ICS) to create a tough, reliable, custom solution.
This upgrade consisted of a new 100MT hopper and 950MTPH unloading conveyor, expanding on the first phase of their dome-filling conveyor. From design to fabrication and installation, this entire turnkey solution was provided by Advance Millwrights and ICS, creating a streamlined process for the customer.
Built and designed with IRONCORE technology, this massive 23ft x 23ft hopper was fabricated in two sections in order to ship it to the site safely. This hopper incorporated a burly baffle system to help eliminate dust, and waterways provide an environmentally friendly unloading system. Designed with a truck filling spout, the hopper can alternate from ship to truck easily. Furthermore, this hopper can accommodate a wide variety of vessels for offloading, eliminating the need for portable unloaders. Finally, the hopper was primed and painted, complete with galvanized structures, to provide longevity to the system’s lifespan in this corrosive environment.
The IRONCORE robust 48-in-wide galvanized 950MTPH transfer conveyor included covers and belt scrapers, minimizing lost product. An automated control system, created and installed by ICS, integrated with the stacker belt conveyor to fill domes and trucks as required.
Advance Millwright’s and ICS’s field service team quickly deployed this new system at the customer site, efficiently and safely installing the equipment. Now fully operational, this new system can unload vessels within three days around the clock, with minimal movement to the vessel’s position.
INNOVATION & TECHNOLOGY
Going Up? Introducing Ever-Kleen®
Tri-Mach is thrilled to unveil the Ever-Kleen® Vertical Elevators series. This new custom system allows processors to reach new heights in less time without expanding their current facility production footprint.
As inflation increases and the labour pool decreases, processors are tasked with increasing product output with less overhead. Maximizing operational capacity through automated vertical solutions allows manufacturers to raise their current revenue per sq ft. of floorspace while removing the need for manual labour. The result is a rapid ROI.
“The system provides a universal compact solution, from empty to full cases,” said Kory Graham, Sr. Director of Sales. “This series streamlines the entire production process, separating case erectors from production without manual intervention.”
This patent-pending, fully automated system was built to uphold sanitary regulations, is fully washdown, and can be customized to meet various product specifications. Capable of conveying product up or down, this system can transport 2,000 cases per hour, carrying up to 100,000 lbs.
“This new solution is optimized for floorspace reduction and features a zero-changeover system,” said Joshua Bailey, Product Innovation Manager at TMG. “This allows for an infinitely variable amount of product to be transferred without interruption.”
Think Sustainability as a Strategy
With the G7 looking to mandate companies disclosing their exposure to climate-related risks, manufacturers are tasked with reducing their carbon footprint now more than ever. When it comes to sustainability and clean tech, companies often think solely about energy reduction in processing. An element often overlooked, however, is just how much of an impact waste has on a carbon footprint.
Carbon reduction initiatives fall into 3 scopes that a company can focus on. Scope 1 relates to all direct efforts a company has power over – eg. your facility emissions or waste. Scope 2 relates to all the emissions consumed through purchasing of equipment and processes for your operations – eg. electricity or steam. Finally, scope 3 relates to all emissions that occur both up and down your value stream that can still be linked to your operations – eg. the transportation of raw products and the use of your sold goods. At TMG, we are committed to creating an impact on all 3 scopes, looking further than only our own internal practices at how we can make an impact for our vendors and customers.
When it comes to food, most waste is produced by the end consumer. However, a whopping 30 percent is wasted at the processing and farming level.¹ Let’s put the carbon impact of this production waste into a real-world application. If every cow slaughtered experiences 2% (or 28lbs) of wasted meat throughout the entire production process, and a cow emits roughly 221g of carbon dioxide per every g of beef, this equates to over 3 tonnes of emissions created per cow just to become wasted food.²
Reducing this waste in production often takes an external perspective to locate and fix the root cause without compromising the current process. Innovative tight-transfer conveyors and automated processes can drastically reduce the amount of waste that occurs in production. Furthermore, collecting and diverting any waste to be used as a by-product is a great method to get used of discarded products without having the carbon imprint go unused. No matter what your process consists of, a trained TMG expert can find a method of increasing your current sustainability efforts.
1. Food and Organic Waste Framework (ontario.ca) 2. As Beef Comes Under Fire for Climate Impacts (insideclimatenews.org)
PEOPLE & CULTURE
Safety Training Soars at TMG
The health and safety of our team and our customers is a top priority at TMG. Going Above & Beyond in safety, TMG kicked off the new year having our entire field services, production, and office management teams First Aid Certified over a two-day course. With First Aid trainers visiting our facility to internally train our team, we are proud to announce that over 110 TMG employees are now First Aid & CPR/AED level C certified!
Furthermore, TMG has created an internal safety training program to ensure each of our managers, foremen, and lead hands is receiving ongoing practical and classroom training. This program certifies each TMG field service team member is trained above the required essentials, ensuring a safety expert is on every job site TMG works on. “We’re dedicated to having the best safety in the industry,” said Tom Anstee, H&S Manager at TMG. “Having a trained group on all requirements can only help ensure our employees make it home in the same condition they reported working in.”
Expanding our safety knowledge and tools, TMG has solidified a partnership with AEC Safety Solutions to gain an external perspective on our internal practices. This partnership ensures our team is receiving best-in-industry knowledge and experience, ensuring everyone can thrive in a secure workplace.
New TMG Days Offer Flexibility to Our Team
Being ‘the top choice for employees and customers alike’ means listening to our team’s needs and continually improving on how we can support them.
To kick off 2023, TMG introduced the TMG Day program, giving 5 Flex Days to each team member to use for whatever they may need! These TMG Days offer up to 5 paid days off on top of their allotted vacation time to deal with illness, family matters, mental health, or any other circumstances.
“As we continue to grow, our priority is always to make our group of families the number one choice to work for,” said Krystal Darling, CEO of TMG.
TMG Welcomes New CFO Steve Kamski
TMG is thrilled to welcome Steve Kamski to the team as Chief Financial Officer. With over 20 years of financial leadership experience, Steve brings with him a wealth of knowledge and leadership to complement the TMG team.
Steve specializes in mergers and acquisitions, being closely involved in over 15 acquisitions in his previous role at a $1B organization. For these acquisitions, Steve was involved in the due diligence, financial integrations, and support for any merging of systems and processes. His proven experience within this environment will benefit TMG’s future growth plans, supporting the CEO, Krystal Darling, in future acquisitions.
In his new role, Steve will take on complete financial leadership of the finance team, ensuring reporting, controls, and systems are all completed in an efficient manner. Steve will also be working closely alongside other department leaders to assist them in executing their strategies, creating a more streamlined and automated process throughout the organization.
“Krystal’s clean, concrete vision for where the company is headed was easy to get behind,” said Steve. “The opportunity to return to my roots and help a growing company get to the next level was exciting to me.”
As a father of four, Steve is no stranger to a family-oriented group. “So far, the people and the culture have really been the stand-out factors here. The family-oriented values have made my time here so far amazing”.
TMG is excited to have Steve join our team and look forward to a successful future with him as a leader.
MESSAGE FROM THE CEO
Committed to Being the NUMBER 1 CHOICE
As we look towards the future, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the success we’ve had and each of the individuals who have supported our journey.
First and foremost, none of our continued success would be possible without our dedicated team. Our commitment to customer satisfaction and quality is driven by the passion of our team, and we will continue to support them however we can.
Over the past year, we have faced many challenges as a business, but we have also learned a great deal about resilience, adaptability, and the importance of innovation. We have remained focused on delivering the highest quality products and services to meet the needs of our customers.
Looking ahead, we are excited to build on this momentum and explore new opportunities for growth and expansion. We are investing in cutting-edge technologies and processes that will help us to operate more efficiently and to deliver even better results for our customers. Internally we are providing training and development to our skilled tradespeople to set a new standard for skilled trades excellence.
We are also exploring new markets and partnerships, both domestically and internationally. We believe that there is tremendous potential for our business to grow and thrive, and we are committed to pursuing every opportunity to make this a reality.
Of course, we are thankful for the continued support of customers and valued suppliers. We are grateful for your loyalty and patronage, and we are committed to delivering the highest level of customer service and satisfaction.
As we move forward, we will remain focused on our core values and our vision of being the number 1 choice for employees and customers alike. We believe that by staying true to this vision, we can make a positive impact in the world.
Krystal Darling, B. Sc, MBA, ICD.D
Chief Executive Officer
Tri-Mach Groups Inc.