Bob's Red Mill Goes Employee-Owned (VIDEO) | Civil Eats

Bob’s Red Mill Goes Employee-Owned (VIDEO)

In the age of corporate consolidation, one business owner has refused to sell his multi-million dollar company, and instead has handed it over to his 209 employees this week, who he considers a ‘second family.’ Bob Moore, owner of Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods, started his business selling organic whole grain products in Portland, Oregon in 1978.

“Its the only business decision that I could make,” Moore told ABC News. “I could not sell the company. I don’t think there’s anybody worthy to run this company but the people who built it.” He continued, “There is a lot of negative stuff going into business today. There is a good old basic Bible lesson, and that is that ‘the love of money is the root of all evil.’ And unfortunately our entire philosophy today to get as much money as you can any way that you can has caused people to do a lot of things just for money that they feel in their hearts is just not the right thing to do. I’ve just truly tried to set some of that aside and do what I thought was the best thing for the group of people who made this all possible.”

Here is a video by ABC News featuring Mr. Moore and his company:

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Paula Crossfield is a founder and the Editor-at-large of Civil Eats. She is also a co-founder of the Food & Environment Reporting Network. Her reporting has been featured in The Nation, Gastronomica, Index Magazine, The New York Times and more, and she has been a contributing producer at The Leonard Lopate Show on New York Public Radio. An avid cook and gardener, she currently lives in Oakland. Read more >

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Join the conversation.

  1. Holly
    Go Bob! That is the most wonderful thing you could have done! Thank you for trusting in your employees.
  2. Gail
    How to be a Human Being
    A man who learned Wisdom and how to bring out the best in people
  3. Ed Kelly
    I know exactly how you feel about your company and its admirable the lord blessed the world when you put you on this earth. I've been using your products for years I use it every day and it does my heart good to know what you're doing. This country wouldn't be in the condition it's in if there were more people like your. Best of luck to you and all your employees and everyone has done a great job thank you.
  4. James
    I think I will stick with Bob's products (excellent quality) for this decision.

    J
  5. I live just a few miles from Bob's Red Mill corporate headquarters and restaurant. I have been taking my family for breakfast at their wonderful restaurant/store for a few years now. Bob is always there sometimes having breakfast, sometimes greeting people, sometimes driving up to the store in his model-T with his wife and wearing his red cap. He's always there to charm my 2 girls (6 and 8 now). He always engages us in some way. I knew this was a different kind of business. It feels different than most businesses you walk into. Now I know that it really is different.

    I encourage everyone to buy Bob's Red Mill products. If you can't get his products where you live, ask for them at your grocery store. Or go to his website. (Note: I don't work for Bob. I only know him from the times he's engaged my family in small talk at the restaurant. I've just been a loyal customer for years. I buy his scottish oats by the 4 pack!)
  6. Susan
    Thank God for people Bob Moore. US companies should take a lesson from this man. There would be less greed and more cooperation if people worked together for the common good! This is the best video I have watched in a very long time!

    Susan ~ Boston
  7. Marisa Avalos
    Absolutely fantastic!!! THIS IS WHAT AMERICA SHOULD BE ABOUT!!! Its pathetic and a shame that Americans are clueless about their food and where it comes from, and its production. Conglomerate America has bought and paid for this country for so long now, join in the fight to win it back, DONT BE STUPID about what is happening all around you. DO SOMETHING, anything: educate yourself, advocate, pay attention!!
  8. juil
    Would I consider a corporate video production?

    The question is can I afford not to!

    Its not about staying ahead of your competitors anymore, its about keeping up with them.

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