In her word words: Frances Pritchard of Killer Salsa
July 19, 2010
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: Tell us a little about your company its specialties, its history, the size of its staff.
Frances Pritchard: We make fresh refrigerated and shelf-stable Killer Salsa. I lived in the San Francisco Bay area in 1992 and worked as a food service manager. I made fresh salsa for my breakfast customers and everyone told me it was “killer!” When I moved to Minden and could not find a job, I decided to see if I could sell my salsa. Scolari’s was my first grocery store as they are good to promote “Made in Nevada” products. We now sell to every major grocery store in the Reno-Tahoe area. In May we started to deliver to the local Costco’s in a 48-ounce container. Killer Salsa has been in business for 17 years and we try to grow our customer base every year. 2009 was the first year we did not show a growth in sales. Our staff is five girls that make salsa at the factory in Gardnerville and three delivery drivers. We do direct-delivery only in the Reno-Tahoe area. We make four flavors of fresh Killer Salsa and seven flavors of “shelf-stable” salsa. We sell our “shelf stable” on our website http://www.killersalsa.com. I grew up in Tucson, Ariz., and people tell me my salsa tastes like a Sonoran salsa with tomatoes, peppers, cilantro, onions, garlic and spices. I think the secret of our success is no chemicals! Just good food!
NNBW: What role do you play in the company?
Pritchard: Up until a few years ago I was the delivery driver, marketing, product production, bookkeeper and general CEO. Due to some health problems, I have had to delegate duties more and more. Fortunately I have a fabulous staff that has taken over in some of these jobs for me! I still do the marketing myself.
NNBW: How did you get into this business?
Pritchard: I have worked in food service in the grocery industry in Pennsylvania and then in California in cafeteria management. These jobs gave me the tools necessary for running my own business.
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NNBW: What is something no one knows about your job?
Pritchard: How frustrating it is to have someone who knows nothing about your business try to tell you what you need to do to succeed!
NNBW: If you could have had any other profession what would it have been? Why wasn’t it your first choice?
Pritchard: I pretty much love what I do and try to do it to the best of my ability. Anything to do with food is not work for me. So I guess this is my chosen profession!
NNBW: What do you like to do when you’re not working?
Pritchard: I love to go camping, gardening cooking and traveling. I love living in the Carson Valley as we have so many great places to be outdoors in a short time.
NNBW: Have any advice for someone who wants to enter your profession?
Pritchard: Plan on devoting all of your time to your business. You will eat, sleep and dream your product. If you are not willing to do that you will not succeed.
NNBW: If you could have one superpower, what would it be and why would you want it?
Pritchard: To be able to fly anywhere in a few hours. I would love to go to Russia but don’t know if I could be on an airplane long enough to get there!!
NNBW: What person, living or dead, would you most like to have dinner with, and why?
Pritchard: I would love to have dinner with my mother. She died on the one year anniversary of my company and I still miss her!
NNBW: What’s the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Pritchard: Always tell the truth and you never have to remember what you said! I have always tried to live my life with this philosophy.
NNBW: What do you like most about your job? What do you like least?
Pritchard: I love to promote my product. Hate the paperwork involved with running the business. But I have learned to make a copy of everything and document everything you do!
NNBW: What five words would most people use to describe you?
Pritchard: Enthusiastic, determined, hard working, ambitious and happy.
Name: Frances Pritchard, owner and CEO, Killer Salsa
How long have you been in this job? 17 years
How long in the profession? 35 years
Education: high school
Best book you’ve read? “Gone with the Wind”
What’s on your iPod? Don’t own one
The best movie ever? “Gone with the Wind”
Spouse, kids or pets? Significant other for 10 years, 3 sons and 2 1/2 cats.