Spee-Dee Packaging Machinery, which started as an acquisition with only four employees, is now a growing company with a team of 95 associates. The second-generation, family-owned company is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year.
Spee-Dee was founded in 1981 when Jim Navin acquired the Spee-Dee product line from Franklin Electric Co. By 1989, he had grown the Spee-Dee cup filler business and entered into the auger filler market with another acquisition. The company transitioned to servo motors and PLC controls in the 90s, and began using Electro Magnetic Force Restoration (EMFR) weighing technology to develop its checkweighers in the 2000s. After the purchase of its current 48,000-square-foot facility, Spee-Dee expanded its research and engineering department. This led to new innovations such as: high-speed rotary filler, vacuum tooling for dust-free fills and hygienic design standards that meet strict regulations, including the 3A sanitary auger for dry milk, infant formula, and other applications that require meticulous sanitary standards.
Today, Spee-Dee is still family owned and operated with several employees having worked with the company for more than 20 years. While first-generation founder Jim Navin has retired from daily operations, he remains chairman and his sons are helping Spee-Dee evolve with new filling technologies. Spee-Dee’s second-generation of ownership includes: Dave Navin, president; Mark Navin, vice president of sales, and Paul Navin, operations manager.
“We’re still a family owned and operated company 40 years after our father founded Spee-Dee and we’re proud to carry out his vision of integrating new technologies to enhance the reliability and accuracy of our machines for the benefit of our customers,” said Navin.
While Spee-Dee is known for its industry-leading rotary, volumetric and auger fillers for dry products, such as baking mixes, coffee and spices, the company is continually adding new technologies, developing new machines and entering new markets.
Just this year, Spee-Dee launched an automated cannabis packaging system. Accurate filling and weighing of flowers or ground cannabis is made possible with a dual tare gross weighing system that checks the jar tare weight before filling and gross weight after filling—all at high speeds. Spee-Dee also recently entered the nutraceutical market with its gummy filling system. A patent-pending baffle system streams gummies without clumping allowing for high-speed filling up to 180 bottles per minute. The sanitary gummy filling system integrates with a variety of multihead weighers, and includes a Spee-Dee rotary filler and checkweigher.
Spee-Dee is currently renovating and expanding its facilities to support its entry into new markets, accommodate its 95 employees and be prepared for future growth.
“We take great pride in knowing that our customers have relied on Spee-Dee for the past 40 years,” said Navin. “With the support of our customers and dedicated employees, we look forward to expanding our product line and entering new markets in the future.”