A FAMILY HISTORY
FPE (Food Processing Equipment, Inc.) was founded in 1998 by Phil Hartman. Phil was a true engineer at heart, a endless tinkerer, and a charismatic leader of projects among his family and friends. Phil identified a need for an alternative to heat pasteurization for the apple cider industry when Federal standards for purification were being mandated throughout the US. His engineering background enabled him to apply ultraviolet technology he had worked on in the semiconductor manufacturing industry to the Apple Cider Industry. Phil worked closely with Cornell Professor Dr. Randy Worobo to develop the first UV machine approved by the FDA for beverage pasteurization, the CiderSure product line was born. As the technology proved itself and FPE grew, Phil employed many of his nephews, nieces, and family friends and focused on running a business that took care of its customers, innovated and developed the technology, and prioritized the adventure Phil believed life should be.
Phil was very passionate about everything he did. His infectious smile and friendly demeanor enabled him to develop memorable and close working relationships with his customers. Often times, he would drive hundreds of miles to visit a customers to remedy a problem they were having and to enjoy their fine selection of doughnuts and apple cider. Within is family and community, Phil was a ring leader, an instigator of many fantastic projects and worldly adventures, Phil was the glue that held many people together in wonderful ways.
Phil was left paralyzed from the waist down as a result of injuries he incurred in a car accident shortly after his high school graduation. This never seemed to slow him down or dampen his spirit. He continued to pursue his passions in life running his own businesses, traveling, scuba diving, white water canoeing and flying his own airplane. What Phil enjoyed most of all was spending time with family and friends. Phil passed away in June of 2010. He is greatly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing him.
Since Phil's death, the nephews that Phil employed (and in many ways helped raise) and Phil's brothers (successful engineers themselves), have taken over the business. The team continues to expand, and FPE remains committed to high standards of quality manufacturing and customer service and continues its leadership role within the development of UV's ability to treat beverages and other liquids.