By Ellen Walsh

Hayward, CA: Despite well documented challenges California businesses in general continue to face, long standing businesses in the foodservice sector continue to grow. Pucci Foods, (formerly Joe Pucci and Sons Seafood Company), seafood distributor since 1918 in the Greater Bay area, has just completed a move that took the company from their Oakland warehouse and distribution center, to a brand new, state of the art facility in Hayward.

We had outgrown our facility and were struggling with just the concept of what it would take to double the size of our facility,”said Chris Lam, President and CEO of the well known seafood distribution center. “This was not just the logistical planning for an increased size facility, it was a very important step towards state of the art food safety, label of origin issues, and traceability that today's modern world of food safety calls for. The task was monumental. But we had a loyal core group of over 1000 restaurants and stores that ordered from us, and we knew if we upgraded our facility to include these safety issues along with more center of the plate items, that we would continue to be essential to them. I guess now would be a good time to thank them all for their patience, as some of the logistics we encountered were breathtakingly difficult.

Expanding his concept to include sustainably harvested seafood and other high end naturally raised protein center of the plate items such as Natural Black Angus, and Kobe Beef, Lam envisioned a distribution center which would service his growing clientele for well into the future.

“Once you make the decision to do the expansion, then all the other things you want to do come into play. We wanted to be able to advise our customers as to which products were sustainable and well managed, such as Alaskan Halibut and Wild Salmon. This then led to other high end items we knew our clients either wanted to order, or were already ordering, such as naturally raised beef, pork and lamb. It wasn't about becoming a full service distributor, it was about filling out the protein, or center of the plate concept, and providing well informed representatives who could help their restaurant clients work with whatever parameters they had.”Said Lam.

As a leader in the seafood industry, catering to clients who are more environmentally conscious has led Lam to balance the information they offer to clients by cementing relationships with various environmentally conscious groups. Armed with charts and posters on sustainably harvested seafood, Lam welcomes a new world of seafood consciousness, and customers who want to tap into this kind of awareness and menu planning.

It was a busy morning long before the sun came up, as the 17 delivery trucks left for their routes throughout the Greater Bay area. As fishing seasons go, it was the height of crab season. We watched as thousands of pounds of fresh crab were loaded up and sent out to restaurants, stores and non profit organizations along with the hundreds of other items that would be found on menus throughout the Bay Area.. As we stood outside the 53,000 state-of-the-art square foot facility we had just toured, Chris Lam gestured to his newly built empire with the love of a shepherd who has taken care of his flock.

“I have built this facility with attention and care to what I believe are the needs of the future! Chris Lam said as he gestured to his newly built facility. “I welcome my customers now with welcome arms!”

PucciFoods is a full service center of the plate distributor servicing the Greater Bay Area since 1917. Providing the finest in seafood, naturally raised poultry, beef and produce, PucciFoods is an environmentally conscious company offering both fresh and frozen product solutions to their valued clients.

For a consultation on your seafood needs,

call Chris at PucciFoods 510 444-3769



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