Volk Packaging Corp: Thinking Inside, Outside and Around the Box
By Shawna Chigro-Rogers
“Everyone loves boxes,” right? Well I can vouch for that as a parent of over excited
kiddos during the holidays, but the folks at Volk Packaging Corporation (VPC) truly
believe. So do others. Take a look at what’s inside a Volk Box…
A Commitment to Community
Piggy Banks. Cardboard banks that look like houses - ready for artistic creation, to be
exact. VPC created and distributes these banks for Houses for Change. Money
collected is donated to any Maine homeless organization! VPC received the United Way
of York County Silver Award for outstanding community service for their participation.
Batting Cages. Not to collect bats flying in warehouse rafters – there are no bats in the
warehouse just to be clear - but to support local baseball and softball teams with a place
to practice - year round - at no cost. Home run!
Manufacturing Jobs. VPC moved to Maine in 1967 to address the needs of the state’s
manufacturing. Today, it’s challenging to swim with the big Fortune 100 fish ~
companies that own the corrugated plant, the paper mill and even the forests. VPC “out
hustles the competition” by being a box top! The business runs 24/7 and produces 50%
more product since moving to larger warehouse in 1998. It is the only corrugated
manufacturer in the state.
A Commitment to Excellence
Customer Focused Customer Service. Never letting the customer down is job number
one. Volk’s motto: “Our customer is our bread and butter” (Isn’t that bread and
“buttah”?!). Story after story I read, this is my favorite…A customer needed boxes
delivered immediately. All delivery trucks were out for the day. The sales associate
offered to deliver them personally. The problem? The boxes were ten feet long! The
solution? Delivering boxes via his bass fishing boat! Smooth as buttah!
Culture of Core Values. Integrity, respect, teamwork, quality, and purpose build the
foundation for service to employees and customers alike. “Our associates work with us
not for us,” says Derek Volk, President. How does leadership keep employee morale
from feeling boxed in? A “liberal dose of fun” beginning with the Corrugated Olympics
(ah, I now have a new holiday activity); the recognition of associates with the Benjamin
Volk Award for Excellence; and a degree in Boxology through the VPC University at
Biddeford. I did not make this up! It’s VPC commitment to keeping a positive workplace,
which in turn is paid forward to customers.
Innovation – Volk Has It Boxed Up!
Maine breeds entrepreneurs. Yes, I believe that! With more than 200,000 different box
specifications offered, nearly everything VPC produces is custom made. VPC has found
a way to service customers with special needs from stock boxes for gardening outlets,
shipping cartons that double as display cases, cushioned boxes for computers gizmos
and other concoctions for any shape of wicker basket, wind chime, or 600 pound
“When asked if we can do something, we say ‘Yes,’ and then figure out how to do it,”
states Douglas Volk, CEO.
Why Maine? - Maine people.
Customers. Recall, “If you build it they will come?” Well Volk Packaging took heed
literally and packed up their boxes to move to the Biddeford Industrial Park to meet the
needs of customers with thriving shoe, tannery, wood and paper businesses. Forty-five
years later the company is one of Biddeford’s largest employers servicing 60% of their
business in Maine.
Employees. “Associates” rather - represent Maine work ethic at its best. They are loyal
and hard working – the type of employees that do what it takes to get the job done.
“Our employees are not just our greatest assets, they are our everything,” states Volk.
Fellow Businesses. The Volk family has been committed to helping Maine grow and
prosper from the beginning. Kenneth Volk, co-founder, worked with Governor James
Longley on his Maine Capital Corporation to encourage and support businesses moving
their companies to Maine. Today, Derek Volk serves on Governor LePage’s Advisory
Committee on Fair Competition with Private Enterprise.
“We are a Maine company owned by Maine people. We employ Maine people, and we
care about our Maine community. We are here to stay and help make Maine a better
place to do business,” states Volk.
Maine NewsSimply is pleased to feature Volk Packaging Corporation. Please visit
www.volkboxes.com to learn more. Who knows, you too may find yourself looking at a
box from a different point of view.
Company: Volk Packaging Corporation (VPC)
Founder: Kenneth Volk and Benjamin Volk