A Third Generation Latin Business Success Story

Hispanic business Ruiz foods

Family-owned Latin business manufacturer Ruiz Foods has secured the #1 brands in their respective categories.


Ruiz Foods is one of the largest manufacturer of frozen Mexican food in the United States. The company’s story is largely that of father and son co-founders Frederick R Ruiz and his father Louis, a Mexican immigrant who, at age five, fled Pancho Villa with his family in the middle of the night.


Latin foods Latin Business Today Louis and Fred Ruiz

Together they would establish Ruiz Foods in 1964 in Dinuba, California. Their dream was to create a company that would generate millions in sales over the duration of their lifetimes. As of a few decades ago, annual sales of their frozen food products such as burritos, tamales and enchiladas has more than quadrupled. Ruiz currently manufactures nearly 200 different food products, ranking second among the top ten Hispanic-owned manufacturing firms in the U.S., as well as first among the top ten U.S Hispanic-owned companies in the State of California.

While this Latino business evolved and grew, so did the Ruiz commitment to their employees and surrounding communities. “It’s our corporate responsibility to do what we can to make the world a better place,” explains Fred Ruiz. “As Chairman and CEO of Ruiz Foods, it’s my responsibility to be active in that role and to continue to look for ways to improve the lives of our Team Members and their families But it goes beyond that … it’s also important to be active in improving the future of our community … it’s also important to be a role model for young Hispanics and help them realize that with an education and a commitment to hard work they, too, can live the ‘American Dream”‘


Latin business Latin Business Today Louis

Putting this commitment into practice, the company not only offers an excellent employment package but also additionally offers a tuition reimbursement program, extensive new-hire orientation, health screenings, homeownership education classes, vocational English or Spanish, basic math classes and a variety of training classes. These include: production computer equipment, maintenance, business writing, leadership and safety, HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point, FDA regulations) and microbiology, IT wireless and payroll and operations computer training.

In 1990, Fred Ruiz helped establish the nonprofit status of Ruiz 4 Kids, an organization comprised of Ruiz Foods employees who recognize a need to help area children. Through two annual fundraising events, Ruiz 4 Kids distributes scholarships and supports children-related programs with in local communities, distributing more than $1 million to children in need.

Over the years, Fred and Louis and Ruiz Foods have garnered noteworthy recognition. In 1983, they received the United States Small BusinessAdministration’s Business of the year Award, accepting it in the Rose Garden of the White House from

Latin Business Latin Business Today Fred Ruiz and Kim Ruiz Beck

President Reagan. In 1992, they received the National Entrepreneurial Success Award, resulting in Ruiz Foods being inducted into the United States Small Business Administration’s Hall of Fame in Washington, D C In 2003, the SBA celebrated its 50th Anniversary by inducting 23 U.S. companies into a special Anniversary Hall of Fame; Ruiz Foods was one of those selected. Also in 2003, president Bush visited this Hispanic business facility. The event was attended by approximately 1,800 people, in conjunction with the President’s introduction of his administration’s Minority Home Ownership Initiative.

The company has been featured on numerous magazine covers, and their El Monterey brand products have appeared on episodes of the Food Network show ‘Unwrapped’ in 2003 and 2005, as well as NBC’s ‘California Country’ in 2004. Ruiz Foods is also a corporate Honor Roll member of California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Summit on Health, Nutrition and Obesity.






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