Jeff Kleinpeter, president and chief executive officer of Kleinpeter Farms Dairy, said Thursday he is taking a short sabbatical after working to overcome quality issues last year involving the family owned Baton Rouge dairy’s milk.
“I expect to come back within 30 days to help the team grow even further,” Kleinpeter said.
Kleinpeter said his brother Kenny, acting general manager, sister Sue Anne Kleinpeter Cox, the chief financial officer, and his daughter, Taylor, will “keep the upward sales momentum going.”
Kleinpeter dealt last year with complaints of some milk having a funny taste and turning sour before its expiration date. An inspection found an equipment malfunction was letting diluted soapy water remain in tanks after they were cleaned, which was causing the strange taste. The equipment was replaced and new procedures were put in place.
Kleinpeter Farms Dairy said it spent “in the neighborhood of $3 million“ replacing equipment, hiring a full-time sanitation manager and sending employees to rigorous national training programs.
“Fourteen months of three-hour nights is enough to wear anyone out,” Kleinpeter said Thursday. “I hung in there with the team and we got the quality back to better than it’s been in 101 years,” he said. “Things are back on track and I need to take a sabbatical.”