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KanPak named Kansas’ 2021 Governor’s Award of Excellence recipient

Gov. Laura Kelly (D) Kansas
Gov. Laura Kelly (D) Kansas
Published: May. 12, 2022 at 3:39 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - KanPak, a global manufacturer based in Kansas, has been named as the state’s 2021 Governor’s Award of Excellence recipient.

On Wednesday, May 11, Kansas Governor Laura Kelly says she announced KanPak - an Arkansas City-based manufacturing company - as the winner of the 2021 Governor’s Award of Excellence. She said the award is the top honor given to a business by the state.

Gov. Kelly said she joined the Kansas Department of Commerce to honor KanPak and other Kansas businesses at the inaugural To the Stars: Celebrating Kansas Businesses banquets - a new annual celebration of Kansas businesses and their contributions to the state.

“Private sector leaders like KanPak have helped make Kansas one of the best places in the nation to do business,” Kelly said. “By creating jobs and driving economic growth, local businesses improve the communities they serve. Congratulations to KanPak and the other amazing Kansas businesses for their outstanding contributions to the state.”

Founded in 1965 as Kansas Food Packers, Kelly said KanPak started as a family-owned dairy company that produced juices, coffee drinks and ice cream treats. In the decades since, she said KanPak has grown to be an industry leader and innovator in aseptic beverage and dessert packaging tech.

Kelly noted that KanPak’s customers include Chick-fil-A, Whataburger and 7-Eleven. Once a small operation, she said KanPak now distributes products globally.

The Governor also said the 2021′s To the Stars Banquet honored 178 businesses, including 133 Merit Award winners and 45 Regional Award winners. In addition to KanPak, she said six Regional Award winners were recognized as the overall statewide winner in their categories, including:

“We are grateful to the Kansas business community for supporting strong communities, healthy families, and a high quality of life,” Lieutenant Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland said. “These businesses are prospering and creating new opportunities for growth across our state.”

Kelly said the 2021 banquet had been delayed until May 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. She said the 2022 celebration will take place in the fall and the nomination process will launch over the summer.

To find a complete list of 2021′s nominees and photos from the event, click HERE.

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