Working at Basic American Foods | Glassdoor

Basic American Foods Overview

Walnut Creek, CA
1001 to 5000 employees
Company - Private
Food & Beverage Manufacturing
$100 to $500 million (USD) per year
Basic American Foods is a successful 85-year-old company with a startup mentality. We are a growing retail and foodservice business that’s dedicated to providing delicious and innovative products to kitchens, cafeterias and dining rooms throughout the U.S., such as ... Read more

Mission: Our supportive and collaborative culture is driven by our mission and vision—to make real food heroes every day by providing our customers with foods that are delicious to eat, easy to prepare and accessible to all; and to create a world full of mealtime ... Read more

Company Updates

  • This year, we celebrated the 40-year anniversary of our operations at the Rexburg, Idaho plant! We've also made a sizeable addition to the facility, enabling us to continue to meet the business needs of our customers for many more years to come and serving as a reminder of our dedication to Southeast Idaho.

  • A team from our Walnut Creek office recently volunteered at the Monumental Toy Drive in Concord, California by opening shipments containing hundreds of fun gifts, flattening the boxes for recycling, and sorting over 1,300 presents for children from ages 5-10. Basic American Foods was also pleased to donate $1,000 to the Monumental Toy Drive to help meet their need for additional toys to distribute. Since 1997, the MTD has been providing gifts during the holiday season to thousands of underprivileged children from public elementary schools in our community. The work was tiring, but very rewarding, knowing that these gifts will bring joy to so many children!

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Basic American Foods – Why Work With Us?

What began as a modest dehydration plant in California back in 1933 has become a market leader in the foodservice space and an innovator in the health and wellness retail category. From shelf-stable, crowd-pleasing potatoes and beans to protein-packed pastas, our portfolio of plant-based foods that are easy to make and easy to love is helping create a world full of mealtime victories in kitchens and dining rooms across the world.

We are committed to our employees’ success and cultivating both their professional development and personal well-being. We offer our employees challenging work in an environment in which they can create meaningful impact, as well as encourage a work-life balance and healthy lifestyle through company-sponsored programs.

At Basic American Foods, it all boils down to loving what we do. A love for great food, for helping our customers and employees succeed, for working hard and winning together, and for making a difference within our company and the communities in which we live.

We are guided by our deep belief in integrity and we hold ourselves and each other accountable in our work, while always maintaining dignity and respect. Our supportive and collaborative culture is driven by our mission and vision—to make real food heroes every day.

In 1933, brothers Jack and Bill Hume set up a modest dehydration processing plant in Vacaville, California, using a technology that was later applied to potatoes. This was the beginning of Basic American Foods.

In the mid-1950s, Basic American Foods established a potato processing plant in Blackfoot, Idaho, where the first instant potato product that could be rehydrated with boiling water was developed. This led to a series of innovative potato products for the foodservice industry that includes the brands Potato Pearls®, Golden Grill®, Classic Casserole® and Savory Series™. As the company grew, additional plants were built in Idaho and Washington.

In response to a customer need for laborsaving quick-prep beans, Basic American Foods introduced Santiago® Refried Beans in 1986. The technology that created this authentic-tasting bean product is now being applied to Santiago® Black Beans and Santiago® Quick-Start® Chili.

Today, Basic American Foods is led by Jack's sons, George and Jerry. With nearly 40 patents to its credit, Basic American Foods is an acknowledged leader in research and development, earning universal respect for innovation, quality and customer service. The company continues to grow, staying focused on its customers and looks to the future with confidence.

At Basic American Foods we take pride in our long-standing reputation of giving back to the communities where we live and work. We have an extensive history of philanthropic support to community organizations, employee volunteerism and responsible corporate citizenship. Community-driven giving provides support to vital community organizations and events that significantly contribute to the quality of life in those regions, regardless of their direct relationship to Basic American Foods. We are proud to be an active part of our communities through contributions and volunteer efforts. Our primary areas of focus are hunger relief, education and public safety.

Hunger Relief

Our company is a strong supporter and partner of many local food banks. We donate our products to help feed families in need and every year our employees donate money to help the Feeding America and United Way hunger-relief initiatives. The company matches donations that are made annually by our employees to both organizations. These funds have made it possible for food banks to purchase much-needed items like stand-up freezers which allow them to supply and maintain perishable goods.


Basic American Foods has a deep commitment to education. We partner with local schools to help provide much-needed equipment and educational resources for children. For example, we helped provide a school with computers and technical equipment, and donated funds that helped Longview Elementary School in Moses Lake, Washington purchase playground equipment after waiting more than 20 years due to budget constraints.

Public Safety

Through our corporate giving programs, Basic American Foods provides grants to local agencies including fire departments and law enforcement offices. The grants enable these organizations to purchase equipment and supplies that they would otherwise not be able to purchase. Recent grants have been used for new air compressors that clean and filter air while filling tanks, personal protective equipment, commercial washing machines and electronics for training rooms.

Beyond our commitment to high-quality, convenient food products, we offer meaningful career and employee development opportunities. It is our goal to ensure that our employees are successful and that they thrive in a dynamic team environment.

Join Our Team

Basic American Foods is focused on hiring the most qualified and talented employees to join our team.

Total Rewards

Basic American Foods cares about employee health and offers many programs and services that make it easier for our employees and their families to stay healthy. Our benefits packages and programs offer employees valuable resources to help them be engaged and healthy in both their lives and work. Our health care benefits include medical, prescription drug, vision and dental coverage for you and your eligible dependents. On top of health care, we also offer other nontraditional perks.

Our comprehensive Wellness Program includes incentives for participation in wellness initiatives, an on-site health and wellness clinic at our Blackfoot, Idaho plant, company paid participation in the Quit for Life® smoking cessation program and many more benefits. We also offer an array of financial benefits and compensation programs that are aligned to reward employees for their contributions toward achieving our strategic goals. 

Additional Benefits:

  • Flexible Spending Accounts
  • Life and AD&D Insurance
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Adoption Assistance
  • Education Assistance
  • Scholarship Fund
  • Matching Gifts for Education
  • Long Term Disability
  • Paid Vacation and Holidays
  • Sick Leave
  • 401(k)

Walnut Creek, California:  At our headquarters, you will work in close proximity to Basic American Foods leadership and enjoy our modern and open office space, beautiful views, and open-door policy. Our location is easy to reach, just steps from the Pleasant Hill BART station, and less than 45 minutes from San Francisco. Walnut Creek has a vibrant downtown area where public arts and recreational activities abound!

Southeast, Idaho:  Our offices in Idaho provide the family-friendly feel of a small town with plenty of nearby nature to explore. This area boasts world class fly fishing, hiking, boating, skiing, and mountain biking and is only a short distance from two national parks - perfect for the outdoor activities lover!

Moses Lake, Washington:  Our Moses Lake location stands in the epicenter of many rapidly growing industries, including agriculture and food processing, aerospace, and manufacturing. It has a diverse, small town feel and excellent school systems, while still within driving distance of Seattle and Spokane. With its large, natural freshwater lake and numerous parks and campgrounds, it is an oasis of outdoor recreation.

Basic American Foods Reviews

  • Helpful (1)

    "Great Company, Nice People"

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Marketing Manager in Walnut, CA
    Former Employee - Marketing Manager in Walnut, CA
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Basic American Foods full-time (More than 3 years)


    This is an established business with a very strong brand portfolio - working here allows you to work for a leader in the Foodservice Industry. Ownership and Management truly cares about their people and was incredibly supportive of new ideas and initiatives. An added bonus was that everyone is super friendly, creating a very positive work environment.


    Production facilities and R&D are located in a different state than corporate headquarters, which created some challenges in communicating and project management.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the great work!

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Basic American Foods Photos

Basic American Foods photo of: BAF Blackfoot
Basic American Foods photo of: BAF Cooking
Basic American Foods photo of: BAF Team
Basic American Foods photo of: BAF Employee
Basic American Foods photo of: Basic American Foods
Basic American Foods photo of: Basic American Foods
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Basic American Foods Interviews



Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview





    Territory Sales Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Walnut Creek, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview


    I applied online. The process took 4+ months. I interviewed at Basic American Foods (Walnut Creek, CA) in December 2015.


    Very long process took over 4 months. Was brought in for the final interview which I felt went very well. The new HR person was not very friendly and I could tell not in favor of me for the position. Ended up not getting the job.

    Interview Questions

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Basic American Foods Awards & Accolades

  • Healthiest Employer, The San Francisco Business Times and Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, 2011
  • Healthiest Employer, The San Francisco Business Times and Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, 2013
  • Healthiest Employer, The Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, San Francisco Business Times, 2012
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