Volume 2 | Issue 1 | Year 2006

Ask any Italian. Not all pastas are created equal. Each has its own flavor, texture and color. And pasta is adaptable, it travels well, is nutritional, has no fat, sodium or cholesterol. And with all its benefits and variety, it is also one of the most versatile and cost-effective foods available on the market today.

The Royal Angelus Macaroni Company is the oldest continually operating manufacturer of this versatile food in the Western United States. It can trace its origin as far back as 1887 to San Francisco where Italian immigrant C.R. Spinvalo founded the company. It was a small, family-owned business steeped in tradition. Business was prosperous and the company made a strong name for itself by providing excellent quality pasta products to a growing population. It eventually became a prominent supplier of premier macaroni products throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. In 1984, the operation closed its San Francisco plant and moved to the Los Angeles area, more specifically, Chino – 70 miles or so east of the city. Combining the name of one of its long time products, the Royal brand, and merging it with the new plant and past company in Los Angeles, the Royal Angelus Macaroni Company was created.

Using Their Noodle

In the 1930s Royal Angelus was the first to commercially produce and market a revolutionary new food item, Vegeroni. It was the first and it remains the best selling vegetable flavored pasta on the market today. The 1970s ushered in an all-natural craze. Always interested in creating something new and catering to the customer, Royal Angelus took notice of the emerging natural foods market and met with farmers to see if they could help them develop organic whole-wheat pasta. Most of the farmers the company met with declined. But one farmer took them up on their idea. Then, in 1975, Royal Angelus introduced its first organic whole-wheat pasta. “At the time there was nothing on the market quite like it,” says Santo Zito, general manager for Royal Angelus. “We’re proud to have spearheaded a product that is still being enjoyed today and even finding a resurgence in today’s specialty stores.” Today, Royal Angelus is the industry leader in certified organic private label pasta commerce.

In 1982 Royal Angelus came up with the first gluten free pasta made completely out of rice. “We don’t know of anyone making this type of product before us,” says Zito. In the early 1990s, Royal Angelus was at the forefront of the production of 100 percent certified organic semolina pasta for a number of preeminent natural foods companies. It has even created a pasta using corn. “Today you can walk into any store selling organic foods and find our products marketed under a variety of proprietary names,” says Zito.

“Royal Angelus has a long-standing tradition of producing the highest quality pasta possible. We continually stress quality from the very beginning. We insist on using only the finest premium ingredients available. We’ve built a reputation that has stood over 130 years and that is why our products are found all over the world.”

Taking Shape

If the Royal Angelus Macaroni Company wants you to know one thing, it’s this: If your company has a unique pasta need, it has the pasta solution. Royal Angelus is a publicly held company traded on the American Stock Exchange. It caters to grocery and specialty stores and also does a lot of private label manufacturing. The company specializes in unique and difficult shapes like manicotti, bowtie, jumbo shells, and lasagna for large chains, pasta manufacturers and the food service arena and even ships products to Japan, The Philippines and other parts of Asia.

Royal Angelus’ custom engineered equipment designed for sophisticated and proficient application, provides the company with the capacity and technical expertise needed to produce pasta in accordance with the rigid specifications demanded by today’s competitive marketplace. “We have the most technologically advanced automated case packing and sealing equipment. The versatility of this custom engineered equipment allows us to design private label programs for our customers that are uniquely crafted to their exacting specifications,” says Zito.

The company’s Chino, Calif. facility is one of the largest of its kind in Southern California. Its 90,000-square-foot set-up is constantly being upgraded and an extensive inventory of modern pasta manufacturing equipment allows the company to offer a wide variety of pasta types as well as retail packaging options all meeting the food industry’s standards. From folding cartons to flexible cello sleeves or zip lock bag type packaging, Royal Angelus has the ability to used preformed paper or poly bags in addition to continuous film to create the perfect packaging for its customers.

Royal Angelus targets both the specialty markets of food processing and food service. “Food processing companies that use pasta products as ingredients in canned or frozen provisions comprise an exceedingly important customer base for us,” says Zito. “Our ability to custom manufacture a virtually unlimited number of pasta varieties and special formulations allows us to provide powerful solutions to both buyers and suppliers.”

The institutional food service trade is also another important market for Royal Angelus. Whether the end user is a gourmet chef or a clinical dietician, food service distributors have come to rely on Royal Angelus for consistent quality and a high level of service options. According to Zito, the food service sector is a demanding one. “It demands consistent quality and competitive pricing. All our pasta products are made from 100 percent durum semolina extruded to exacting specifications and packaged in convenient ten and twenty pound boxes especially for this segment.”

Pasta Pioneers

While Royal Angelus has over 100 existing products, the company’s tradition and innovative spirit makes it always at the ready to discover, create and deliver the next big “hit” in the food market. The company has an organic pasta sauce made in Italy branded under its own label. It also has a caponata product it’s excited about. This Sicilian treat is a mixture of eggplant, tomato, celery, black and green olives, vegetables and capers and can be used as an appetizer or a side dish. Other sauces and pasta accents are also being developed.

“Now that we’re well into our second hundred years of business, we’ve strengthened our commitment to continue with our history of excellence while developing an innovative and value based platform of pasta products and services,” says Zito. The company’s continuous development program of new products has given it the ability to manufacture an unequaled number of pasta items. “We have been continually creative with our research and development projects from day one and by maintaining a flexible production policy we are always able to easily accommodate the development of new products. We want to always be able to offer this flexibility and innovation to our customers. That’s how we’ve maintained our leadership position in the creation and cost effective production of these flavorful pasta products.