Once Again Nut Butter
Once Again Nut Butter/Dawes Hill is an employee-owned company located in a small rural community in Upstate Western New York. We are a 100% employee-owned company.
Jeremy Thaler and Constance Potter met while establishing Mifflin Street Co-op in Madison, Wisconsin. They shared common belief in the importance of herbal supplements, worker-owned cooperatives, organic and sustainable farming and the power of community. Upon leaving Madison and moving to Rochester, New York, they established a worker cooperative distribution called Clear Eye Distribution, and a whole-grain bakery that also produced granola using a barrel roaster.
A chance question from a friend, "You have a barrel roaster, why don't you use it to make peanut butter?" led Jeremy to the peanut butter business. In 1976, Once Again Nut Butter was born. When Jeremy and Connie left Rochester for a more rural area, they moved the company into their 800 square foot basement and manufactured peanut butter there until they purchased the current facility in 1981.
Once Again is a democratically operated employee-owned workplace. We pride ourselves in providing the health-conscious consumers with products of superior quality and integrity. Located in a small rural community, we are dedicated to supporting organic and sustainable farming practices. We are proud to offer a healthier alternative, where every customer matters.
- National Honey Bee Awareness Day
- Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York
- Domestic Fair Trade Association
- Organic Trade Association
- American Peanut Council
- National Cooperative Business Association
- National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO)
- Private Label Manufacturers Association
So what about our raccoon?
Four baby raccoons, referred to as kits, grew up on the factory grounds. They were apparently orphans, and really enjoyed our nut butters. The Once Again Family adopted them, one of whom was lovingly named, Rocky. Our kits were very friendly, and adored our office. So...in turn, we adopted them and created our company logo in their honor.
The Once Again Family helped the raccoons in their early months then released them into the forest. To this day, our byproducts are donated to area farms or to nature lovers who often use our products as animal and bird foods. Our raccoon has become a symbol of our wholesome nature, our closeness and responsibility to the earth and the nature of our product.
About Employee Ownership
Once Again Nut Butter is 100% employee-owned. We are a company with an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP); however, we govern ourselves as a worker-owned cooperative. The biggest difference between a worker co-op and an ESOP is in the valuation of company stock. In our employee-owned company, all the employees are owners.
The employee-owners meet on a regular basis. All employee-owners have a vote on how the company is managed, and we govern ourselves. Each person gets one vote. Our company meetings are held to address the following: company policies, operational issues, and financial strategies. Committees are also formed to help resolve issues, which are subject to a final company vote (1 person = 1 vote). We have at least 3 employee-owners sitting on our Board of Directors.
The income that is generated in our business is distributed fairly. For example, a 4:1 compensation ratio of highest to lowest paid employees. Profit-sharing bonuses are distributed equally to all owners.
We are not hierarchical in our structure. The supply chain is flatter, and streamlined in the way that commodities are grown, purchased, and distributed. Products are produced with a higher level of integrity because the employees share ownership and they take pride in what they are producing.
Our employee-owned company cares a great deal that our growers make a fair wage, so we engage in fair trade practices. We start co-ops in developing countries, helping to address issues of economic crisis and poverty. We also engage in domestic fair trade practices supporting small and rural farms, making sure that beekeepers receive a fair price for crops.
About Our ESOP
An Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) is an employee benefit plan that makes company owners of company employees. At Once Again, the workers-owners own 100% of the company. The shares of our company stock and other plan assets allocated to our accounts must vest before we are entitled to receive them. "Vesting" is a process whereby we become entitled to an increasing percentage of our accounts over time. We receive the vested portion of our accounts at termination, disability, death, or retirement. These distributions are made in a lump sum or in installments over a period of years. If we become disabled or die, our beneficiaries receive the vested portion of our ESOP accounts right away.
International Commitment: We address issues of poverty by paying fair prices for commodities. In addition, we develop and start farm co-ops in developing economies.
National Commitment: A healthy food pioneer, we helped develop the organic peanut growing standards for the United States. We are currently supporting regional beekeepers from family farms and assisting United States organic sunflower growers with crop development.
Our Commitment to You: Our products undergo safety and quality testing from raw goods delivered to our plant to finished goods shipped from our warehouse. We take pride providing you with products of superior quality.
Good Eggs Loves Once Again
Family, Community, Story: From Basement Roasting to Employee Owned
Once Again was founded 1976 by Jeremy Thaler and Constance Potter after a friend suggested they use their barrel coffee roaster to roast nuts. Today it is an employee owned and democratically managed company dedicated to Fair Trade, Fair Labor and sustainability.
Sourcing, Practices, Standards: Nuts About Integrity
Once Again is a leader in sustainability and sourcing ingredients with integrity. They work directly with the farmers and co-ops to ensure the farmers are paid fairly and keep prices stable. They are also members of the non-gmo project and many of their products are Certified Organic - in fact, they were the first in the country to make organic stabilized Peanut Butter!
Flavor: Simple Is Better
It’s no surprise that nuts that have been grown and sourced with tremendous care, turn into some pretty delicious nut butter. Once Again manages to make nut butters with all of the classic characteristics of our childhood PB&Js, without all of that extra added stuff. Most Once Again nut butters have only one ingredient: nuts!