Business Is Sizzling at Baltimore’s Premiere Meat Processor

Nov 02, 2011

Founded nearly 20 years ago by two immigrants in a row house, Fells Point Wholesale Meats has become a leading meat processor in the Baltimore-Washington region, serving high-end restaurants, hotels, clubs and other institutions.

Erik Oosterwijk, president, and Leo Prussien, vice president, have done their best to keep up with the demand for their business, which has doubled in less than two years in spite of a lackluster economy. The company added 10 new employees in 2010 and purchased a 40,000-square-foot warehouse even before discussing the transaction with their Bank of America client manager, Robert Brando.

“I said ‘Robert, we bought a building and now we need a loan,’” said Pruissen, recalling the conversation. “I think that was backwards.”

Brando, who knows Fells Point Wholesale Meats intimately since the company became a client 18 years ago, took the request in stride and arranged to finance the $2 million warehouse.

Now, the company is poised for even more growth, said Oosterwijk, who, at 12 years old, worked in his father’s butcher shop in the Netherlands and later immigrated to Baltimore.

“We’re looking to grow quite a bit over the next five years,” Oosterwijk said. “We have a lot of ideas. In order to get that growth we are going to need that relationship with Bank of America to make and keep us successful.”

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