CWD Assists Local Industries Receive $677,000 in State Training Funds

CWD Assists Local Industries Receive $677,000 in State Training Funds

November 22, 2022 | ,

Volpi Foods is one of 19 local industries working with the East Central College Center for Workforce Development (CWD) to secure and utilize state funds totaling $677,000 that is earmarked for training and development.

According to Kathy Price, director of human resources at Volpi foods, the Union meat processing plant is benefiting from $45,000 in the Missouri One Start program, which is funding leadership, safety and industrial maintenance training for its employees.

Price said she learned about the Customized Training funds through an informational meeting for area HR representatives hosted by the CWD; and ECC staff, Cindy Brinker, CWD grant and program administrator, and Melissa Richardson, CWD apprenticeship and business training program coordinator, were essential in assisting Price with completing required documents prior to submission.

“I was not aware that the grant fund opportunity existed until I went to the presentation,” she said. “They also followed up individually with me to see how they could assist Volpi in completing the application and made an in person visit to review the key steps in applying.”

Volpi Foods has been handcrafting artisan cured meat since 1902. The female-operated manufacturer has been run by the same family for 120 years. Chief Executive Officer Lorenza Pasetti is the great niece of Volpi’s founder. She has been in charge of Volpi since 2002.

Customized Training awards through Missouri One Start range from $10,000 to $100,000 this year with awards averaging around $41,000. That’s compared to an average award in 2021 of $23,000. The increase in average awards is primarily due to Missouri One Start more than doubling its budget for workforce projects in Missouri.

Training for the industries ranges from leadership development, safety training, introductory welding programs, project management to LEAN and Six Sigma training.

“We are still finalizing exactly how we intend to spend the money, but our focus will be on leadership training for our managers, safety training for all employees and some specialized industrial maintenance technical training for our maintenance team members,” Price added.

Royal Canin

Royal Canin, Rolla — a leading producer of science-based cat and dog health nutrition — is receiving $30,000 in Missouri One Start program funding that will be utilized for several areas of training.

According to Derric Fane, Royal Canin Technical Manager, the manufacturer produces over 200 unique formulas of pet food, and each formula uses different ingredients.

“That means there is a high-level of variability — some are high in starch, some are high in protein — there are no two jobs alike,” Fane said.

He added that the Missouri One Grant will fund advanced training for Royal Canin employees for both machine operations and maintenance.

“It will include advanced training for our employees so they can train others,” Fane said, “It will be training to sharpen their skill level so in the future, they can pass along that knowledge.”

Founded by a veterinarian in 1968, Royal Canin has more than 50 years of experience in delivering individualized nutritional solutions. The Royal Canin product line offers a range of diets based on size, age, breed, lifestyle and therapeutic requirements.

Manufacturers Awarded Funds

Through the Missouri One Start Customized Training program the following manufacturers, listed by their locations, were awarded matching training grants:
Paramount Apparel, Bourbon; Homeyer Precision Manufacturing, Marthasville; Henniges Automotive, New Haven; Walker Products and Klauber Machine & Gear, Pacific; Royal Canin, Rolla;
Atro Engineering and Performance Engineering & Manufacturing Racing, St. Clair; Ace Manufacturing and Enjet Aero, Sullivan; Linmark Machine and Volpi Foods, Union; and Clemco Industries, Computech, Enjet Aero, Hodges Badge, Frick’s Meats, WEG Transformers and Parker Hannifin, Washington.

Learn more about the program by contacting the CWD team at or visit

To learn more about CWD industry training and consulting visit