Floyd Wilcox & Sons was founded in 1948 in the little town of Thornton, Idaho. Floyd Wilcox and his three sons, Keith, LeRoy, and David, did most of the construction of the original facility. They poured the concrete for the foundation, went to the hills and cut logs for the floor joists, laid the blocks and built all of the equipment to begin their sorting operation. The original building was around 7,000 square feet in total space.
The Wilcox warehouse basement was divided into holding bins, and in the early years each bin would be rented to a different Idaho potato grower. Each grower would harvest his crop by hand and then haul the crop in burlap bags to the holding bins.
When it was time to export the Idaho potatoes, crews with potato forks would shovel the potatoes out of the bins and onto a conveyor belt. Then, they would go up into a sorting shed where the potatoes were sorted as 1's or 2's and packed into 100-lb bags. The culls (rejected potatoes) were loaded onto trucks and taken to a starch plant. The 1's and 2's were loaded into rail-cars, called ice bunkers, and shipped across the country to the large population centers on the east side of the United States.
From that point forward, our Idaho potatoes would forever be packed into increasingly sophisticated sizes and packages tailored more and more to the changing needs of the consumer.
As the second generation retired they passed the business responsibilities to Keith's sons Lynn, Terry, and Ron. From then on the Wilcox legacy was left to the rising generations to carry on.
After three additions to the original warehouse, it became clear that Wilcox fresh needed a new facility. In 1998, a new 88,000 square foot facility was constructed in Rexburg, Idaho, where the business is currently located.
In 1999, Wilcox Marketing Group partnered with Birds Eye to bring customers the popular line of “Birds Eye Fresh” products.
The Wilcox Fresh brand exploded and the new facility was added onto to accommodate more growth. Potatoes became high demand internationally and sales in Mexico and Canada climbed rapidly.
To prepare for a new decade, Floyd Wilcox & Sons has regrown the Wilcox name and created the Mother Earth brand, which more fully displays the true position and nature of Wilcox.