Featuring Our Shelf Stable Snack Sticks

Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks

Stoltzfus Meats |

We want to take you along for a behind-the scenes tour into our wholesale plant to follow our Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks through production and to learn more about this product!

Made with the perfect blend of beef and seasonings, our Shelf Stable Snack Sticks are a tasty, high-protein snack. Unlike other companies who blend in other meats, rice flour, binders, etc., our snack sticks contain absolutely no fillers and are an all-beef product. They are naturally smoked using hickory wood, with no artificial smoke flavoring added. Additionally, they are considered gluten-free and MSG free. With the perfect water content and pH level, these snack sticks require no refrigeration until they are opened.

Without further ado, let’s jump right into the wholesale plant!

Grinding & Mixing

First, our processing department puts the beef through the grinder to prep it for mixing. After the meat is ground, the perfect amount of seasoning is added and mixed for a total of 10 minutes.

beef in a grinder

seasoning ground beef

Willie and Paul working at the Stoltzfus Meats grinder and mixer
Our processing department workers, Willie (L) and Paul (R), working at the grinder and mixer.

Stuffing & Hanging 

Next, the meat is transferred from the mixer to our stuffing machine. There, it is funneled into a small tube, which is what fills the collagen casing and creates long “ropes” of product. To ensure that the product is perfectly stuffed, hand tension is used on the end of the tube, which makes these snack sticks hand-stuffed, rather than machine-stuffed.

hand stuffing Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks

After the casing is stuffed, the snack stick ropes are hung on racks. Much like the stuffing process, this is  a delicate process as the person hanging the product must make sure that the lengths of the ropes are consistent. This helps to reduce waste of the product and to create consistent sizes once the snack sticks are cut (we’ll get to that part later!).

Because of the hand tension required when stuffing and the precise length required when hanging this product, this step is somewhat time-consuming. It takes our stuffing department about 90 minutes to stuff and hang two racks of product.

teammates at Stoltzfus Meats stuffing the Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks


Once the product is hung on the racks, it makes its way over to the smokehouse for a 5-hour smoke cycle. After that, the snack sticks are transferred to a cooler to prepare for the next step of the process.

fully stuffed and hanging Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks

pushing the hanging Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks rack into a smoker

Before packaging, the snack sticks are checked by our Quality Control Manager for the correct water content and pH levels, which is what guarantees that they are shelf stable and don’t need refrigeration prior to opening.

quality control checking water content and pH levels for shelf stability


The last step of the process is the packing room. This is where the snack sticks are cut into uniform sizes and placed into forms to be packed. The sticks are then vacuum-sealed to ensure freshness.

cutting Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks into uniform sizes

getting Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks ready for packaging

Lastly, they are run through the labeling machine, boxed, and ready to go.

fully packaged Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks

boxing and labeling of the Stoltzfus Meats Shelf Stable Snack Sticks

We currently produce two flavors of these snack sticks. Honey BBQ is the first flavor and is the sweeter option. Ike’s Traditional, which is named as a tribute to the owner’s brother, Isaac, aka “Ike,” is the second flavor and a more savory, spiced option.

Our Shelf Stable Snack Sticks are available at both of our retail locations, as well as other stores and markets in the area. They come in three different pack sizes: bulk, which is about 1.6 pounds and has 32 sticks; retail, which is .45 pounds and has 8 sticks; and the newest size, the twin pack, which has just 2 sticks in it, making it the ideal grab-and-go snack pack.

Thanks for coming along for the behind-the-scenes tour into the production of our shelf stable snack sticks! We hope you enjoyed learning about how this product is made as much as we enjoy showing you how much time and attention is poured into each product that goes through our production facility. Mostly, we hope you check out our Shelf Stable Snack Sticks next time you’re at one of our retail locations… you most certainly will not regret it!

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