HICKORY Industries Inc. was established in 1946 and since
that time has been manufacturing commercial rotisseries for
the industrial market. It has been operating out of a 46,000
square foot facility in North Bergen, New Jersey since August
of 1994. HICKORY was founded in 1946 by Mr. Martin Kalman
and, under his direction, HICKORY produced products
ranging from rotisseries and warmers to stainless steel work
A new corporation was formed in October, 1978 which
purchased the assets and the name of the old corporation.
HICKORY Industries was acquired by Steven Maroti,
President, and Aniko Heller, Vice-president and Secretary, and
they are the present owners of the company.
In 1982 HICKORY brought to market its first counter top
model, the 5.5. This model won first prize from Industrial
Design Magazine in 1983 as the best designed industrial
product in the United States. Prior to that time, no other commercial food equipment manufacturer or product, had ever won that
prize. The 5.5 was designed to target convenience stores, small operations and grocery stores that had limited space. The
model 5.5 is currently Hickory’s number one selling model rotisserie.
In 1983 HICKORY brought to market its model 45WDG. This European styled, open rotisserie, was designed to be the ultimate
merchandiser. Its size, production capabilities and merchandising flare were the perfect ammunition that HICKORY needed to
target the upscale supermarket, gourmet specialty store and upscale restaurant trade. The 45WDG is available with black
anodized frontal panels and is available with stainless steel or brass angle trim. Recently, Hickory has upgraded this unit with
the model 45WDG Plus, which offers an increased merchandising display area that improves capacity by 50% and pivoting
front doors that allow for much easier material handling.
In 1992 Hickory brought to market it’s model 7.7, a batch rotisserie with pull out material handling tables and a rear "show
burner" for improved merchandising. The model 5.7, which is a smaller version of the 7.7, was introduced a year later, it also
has a rear "show burner". Both models are available with programmable controls as an option.
1995 was a banner year for design at Hickory. We came to market
with the model 1.9 rotisserie, which was a very compact, small
footprint unit designed for Convenience stores, small Deli operations
and the smaller supermarket stores, where size restrictions were a
1996 saw the advent of the mobile warming unit at Hickory. As a
company we believe strongly that this piece of equipment should not
be placed in proximity with the rotisserie. Thus the consumer is not
given the ability to make the comparison between the product in the
warming cabinet and the fresh product from the rotisserie, especially
when there is no difference in price between the two! We suggest
that the warmer be placed as close to the check-out counter as
possible; in order to create the opportunity for a final impulse
purchase before that customer leaves the store. Presently, we are
producing 10 configurations of display warmers with varying
capacities and heights. We produce models with and without
warming towers for added merchandising and display capability, with and without interior heated cabinets.
1997 and 1998 were years when the refinement of existing models and their features became the focus. A pass thru option was
created for the 7.7 and 5.5 models. We designed the 5.5 for shipboard use on cruise lines. The 7E and G models were re-
designed with frontal pivot doors allowing for easier access to loading and unloading product. All Hickory units have received
CE approval for use in the European Community.
In 1999 Hickory brought to market a combination rotisserie and grill, the Churrasco, in different sizes. The purpose was to
produce a multiple menu item rotisserie, with multiple menu leg capabilities.
In 2002 Hickory and Hobart signed an agreement where one of Hickory’s models, the N/5.7G, became the HGFR, private
labeled for Hobart exclusively only for the supermarket industry.
2007 has brought a brand new direction for Hickory, Pizza. The Visual Pizza Oven, pending patent, was introduced to the
market place to rave reviews. The unit received patent in early 2008. The unique cooking capability with the additional
merchandising that no other oven can produce, will prove this unit to be the biggest success Hickory has had to date.
HICKORY has targeted its domestic market geographically and by trade class. The company's sales effort is a combination of
direct sales management combined with exclusive distributors in the Supermarket segment, and exclusive sales reps. in the
foodservice arena. HICKORY has been very successful in obtaining a very prestigious list of customers, including: Kroger,
Kenny Rogers, A&P, Waldbaums, King Kullen, Shoprite, D'agostinos, Foodtown, King's, Met Food, Lucky's, Vons, Stop & Shop,
Rainbow Foods, Bruno's, Big Y, Kroger, Dominicks, Boston Chicken, Morrison's, Ralph’s, just to name a few. Today,
approximately 80% of the company's sales volume is generated domestically while the remainder comes from the international
HICKORY Industries principal products are commercial rotisseries, which are available in a number of styles, size
configurations, capacities, and using both gas and electrical power. The rotisseries come with accessories such as: basket spits
for parts, small roast, potatoes, sausages, fish etc.; angled spits for cooking items like whole roasted pig or lamb; spare rib
skewers for ribs; spit holders with casters for ease of transferring product, and many, many more. Hickory’s engineering staff
can design virtually any cooking accessory arrangement imaginable. The basic design of a Hickory rotisserie consists of a
galvanized sheet metal body which is strengthened by stainless steel angles and covered inside and out with high grade
stainless steel The units exterior has decorative stainless sheet metal and is fully insulated. The interior of the rotisserie cabinet
is made with a 304 type stainless steel, which provides the utmost protection against heat, corrosive chicken fat, carbonization
and caustic cleaning agents.
Hickory rotisseries cook product by using either gas or electric energy. Electric units incorporate calrod heating elements which
are turned on individually and glow red hot emitting infra-red radiation.
Hickory also produces island display warmers and countertop warmers, Churrasco rotisserie grills, regular char grills, and the
Visual Pizza Oven.
The North Bergen factory is a fully integrated manufacturing facility with machining, metal fabrication, electrical shop, gas
fabrication, fitting, assembly, testing and shipping. All fabrications are made to company specifications by company personnel.
Very little of the manufacturing process is done outside. Company personnel then assemble the parts, install the electrical
components and any gas parts to produce the finished product. The company holds a recognized trademark, "Old HICKORY",
which is known in the food market industry for its quality, durability, and high production capability. HICKORY is the only
manufacturer in the industry that specializes in rotisseries, and is also the only manufacturer that produces both gas and
electric models in a variety of styles.
As a result, HICKORY is viewed as the expert in the rotisserie field. Hickory’s many "batch" and "vertical" models are by far, the
most recognized rotisserie merchandisers on the market, and are well known for their ability to produce revenues for the
FUTURE PLANS AND STRATEGIES:
HICKORY is fast becoming recognized by the retail trade as an expert in prepared
foods area also. We recognized that prepared foods need a different approach and to
that end HICKORY has developed the concept of the Visual Demonstration Kitchen.
The idea is simply to cook fresh products in moderate sized quantities directly in front
of the consumer. These systems are designed in concert with input from the retailer.
Modularity gives the system the flexibility to change, knowing that prepared foods are
faddish. Visual Demonstration Kitchen has been received at the recent FMI and NRA
as an idea whose time has come. HICKORY plans to bring to market other products
under the Visual Demonstration Kitchen umbrella which can satisfy the concept of
HICKORY Industries is a highly respected company, both in the foodservice and
supermarket industries. HICKORY is fast becoming the leader in the rotisserie market
because of product quality and reputation. The company's growth is expected to be
significant over the next 5 years.