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Bellisio Foods Wins the “2023 R&D Teams of the Year” by Food Processing Magazine

Bellisio Foods, a renowned frozen food enterprise and a subsidiary of CP Foods in the United States, is delighted to announce that its Research and Development (R&D) team has won the “2023 R&D Teams of the Year” title, a distinction awarded by Food Processing Magazine, a leading food magazine in the US with 80 years of experience. This accomplishment accentuates the company’s enduring dedication to invention and product development within the ever-changing landscape of the food industry.  

In the intensely contested medium-sized company category of the magazine’s 52nd Annual R&D Survey, Bellisio Foods emerged victorious. This win signifies not only the high-achieving talent within the R&D team but also the manifestation of a broader commitment to innovation across all aspects of our business.  

Anat Julintron, CEO at Bellisio Foods, shared that this accomplishment mirrors the vision of the parent company, CP Foods, in fostering a culture that champions innovation. He said “One of CP Foods’ foundational values, CPF Ways, emphasizes innovation. We encourage our employees to generate novel ideas, streamline work processes, and relentlessly pursue superior, safe, and cost-effective products.”  

Bellisio, as a subsidiary of CP Foods, is committed to evolving into a systematic innovation organization, aiming to enhance revenue and work efficiency, reduce value chain costs, and nurture a culture of constant improvement. The company’s strategy revolves around four key objectives: being an innovative organization, leveraging innovations for business growth, constructing a global innovation network and ecosystem, and attracting and developing top talent.  

He added that the award underlines the team’s prompt and inventive adaptation to the shifting consumer demands amidst the COVID-19 crisis. The inventive creation of Michelina’s Grande, a line of frozen Italian entrees, demonstrated remarkable resourcefulness and ingenuity.  

The launch of Michelina’s Grande is a powerful demonstration of Bellisio Foods’ adaptive reaction to market transformations triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic. The sudden increase in remote work and home confinement significantly reshaped consumers’ eating habits. Seizing this unparalleled opportunity, the company swiftly recalibrated its product line to cater to these emergent consumer preferences.  

Despite the changing market dynamics, the core value proposition of Michelina’s brand – offering premium-quality meals at affordable prices – persisted as a crucial element of Bellisio Foods’ branding strategy. However, evolving consumer requirements hinted at a new demand. Individuals working from home sought convenient and luxurious dining solutions, reflecting a desire for restaurant-quality meals even while staying indoors.  

Mr. Anat further commented, “We’re immensely proud of the Bellisio team for truly embodying CP Foods’ spirit of innovation. Their hard work, flexibility, and creativity truly reflect our commitment to offering outstanding products to our customers.”  

Mike Gerber, Senior Vice President of Research, Development, and Quality at Bellisio Foods, commented on the shift in consumer demands, stating, “We observed a change in consumer attitudes. Although Michelina’s value proposition remains a fundamental part of our brand, we identified an emerging need as customers increasingly worked from home and sought new dining solutions. This changing landscape paved the way for the development of the Grande product line.”  

In response to the burgeoning consumer demand, Bellisio Foods accelerated its development process, a potentially risky move considering the critical role of extensive testing and quality assurance in food product development. However, this was a strategic decision, premised on the belief that the benefits would surpass the risks. The company employed the collective expertise of its 20-member R&D team, directing their skills towards creating the Michelina’s Grande line.  

This newly introduced line features 10 SKUs, approximately 65% larger in weight than the conventional Michelina’s entrees, and boasts more robust flavors designed to enrich the overall dining experience. This swift product innovation was a direct response to the evolving consumer requirements – larger portion sizes for home dining and a diversified taste profile.  

Although it was initially a reaction to a temporary global crisis, Michelina’s Grande continues to demonstrate commendable performance. The agile product innovation suggesting that Bellisio Foods effectively capitalized on a long-term shift in consumer behavior, which increasingly favors home dining solutions. The enduring success of this product line attests to the company’s agility, innovation, and consumer-focused strategy. The benefits of this swift innovation continue to accrue, even post-crisis.  


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