BOWLING GREEN—Ed and Regina Woods, owners of Woods Smoked Meats, a meat processing plant with a retail store and deli located along Bus. 54, have sold the business to HWC Meats, a partnership between Mike Sloan, owner of Hermann Wurst Haus in Hermann, Mo., Cory Hawkins, owner of Central Missouri Meat & Sausage in Fulton, Mo., and Steve Bolton, Woods Smoked Meats’ general manager.
Woods is retiring after 70 years in the meat processing business. Ed is legendary in the business, having won more than 645 sate, national and international awards for his smoked meat creations. He has awards from the State Meat Processors Convention, state fairs, the American Cured Meat Championships and the prestigious IFFA German Butchers Association Show in Frankfurt, Germany. An icon in the industry, he was inducted into the American Cured Meats Hall of Fame in 1995. Woods Smoked Meats is one of the top three to four award winners in the U.S.
In 2017, Woods was also inducted into the prestigious National Meat Industry Hall of Fame.
He earned a degree in food science and nutrition with an emphasis on meats from the University of Missouri. After graduation, he worked at Wilson Certified Foods in Kansas City before returning to Bowling Green and going into business with his father, who had been operating a grocery store and meat market since 1947. Ed has built the business into a thriving, meat processing plant, retail store and deli, specializing in ham, bacon and sausage.
Ed said he is happy for the sale of the business to his industry friends and the general manager.
“I feel confident that with these three industry leaders at the helm, the Woods Smoked Meat brand will continue to thrive with the highest standard of quality.”
Soan brings 55 years of experience in the industry to the partnership. Mike’s career began at his parent’s meat processing business. In 2011, he and his wife, Lynette, opened Hermann Wurst Haus, Missouri wine country’s premier meat and sausage shop, and deli specializing in smoked meats, such as bratwurst, bacon and sausage. Over the course of Mike’s career, he was won more than 500 national, state, and regional awards; including 14 best of show honors and 29 international awards at the German Butcher’s Association in Frankfurt, Germany.
Hawkins brings 35 years of experience to the partnership. Central Missouri Meat & Sausage is a USDA inspected processing plant, supplying meat to wholesale distributors, grocery store chains, and restaurants along with their own restaurant and retail store.
Bolton, has 25 years of experience with Woods Smoked Meats, and is considered the boots on the ground guy for the partnership.
“The Woods Smoked Meat, Hermann Wurst Haus, and Central Missouri Meat & Sausage brands complement each other exceptionally well, and will deliver an improved value proposition to staff, employees, customers and stakeholders throughout the industries,” said Sloan. “By having three processing businesses, two of which are federally inspected, one state inspected, we will be able to expand our customer base through central Missouri and beyond.”
Sloan noted that each business would promote the other brands.
“We assure Woods Smoke Meats customers that their recipes will not be changed,” Solan added. “Each facility would continue with their custom processing, custom butchering, private labeling, shipping, deer processing, retail sales, deli and restaurant sales, and classes.”