25 Years Strong
Kelly Products is a holding company for 12 operating companies, all focused around agriculture. Sounds simple enough, but the story behind the brand is so much more. Here we share what makes this 25th anniversary so sweet.
What started as a couple of innovative ideas for providing better services, 25 years later is a thriving agribusiness enterprise providing products and services for business, government and consumer.
In 1992, Keith Kelly started Kelly Products with two primary goals: to produce a more efficient formulation and distribution system for plant protection products; and, to create a software system that would streamline the registration process for plant protection products.
These two goals set the stage for the creation of Contract Packaging, Inc. and Kelly Registration Systems. Today, Kelly Registration Systems works with more than 30 state departments of agriculture, providing data services, licensing and registration, and inspections software.
“Kelly remains a pioneer in the service field of regulatory data management for pesticide products. His latest venture, Farmview Market, is setting new standards for farm-to-table enterprises,” said Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black.
In 1998, Kelly Products was awarded the exclusive U.S. manufacturing rights to all Sevin® products sold for home and garden use. Today the manufacturing group produces products for numerous markets in addition to pesticides, including salt-based pool chemicals, utility pole products, deer attractants and hunting scent control, as well as other specialty products.
In 2007, Great Estates Landscaping was established, and today operates in 16 Georgia counties from Atlanta to Lake Oconee, serving more than 550 residential and commercial properties each week.
Kelly also owns and operates various other businesses like its outdoor brands, C’Mere Deer attractants, Swhacker broadheads and Recon Archery.
The Secret Sauce
Kelly’s entrepreneurial vision has created a diverse collection of businesses and opportunities. And business has been good. But what really drives a company for a quarter of a century?
“Our people are the key to it all. They’re our greatest assets. Actions are everything, and when you care about people, and they know it, it becomes a reciprocal relationship, where they are investing in you too. We truly care about our employees and their families personal and professional development,” says Kelly.
The company motto says it all – Just do the right thing, means to use our God-given talents with integrity, honesty and perseverance to provide the highest quality products and services and treat our coworkers and customers as we would like to be treated.
In regards to relationships, Kelly companies pride themselves on having many very long-standing industry relationships that have helped the company reach its 25th anniversary.
“Our manufacturing group wouldn’t be able to provide the services we do today without the partnerships of numerous vendors who have provided us with reliable, quality products for the past two decades,” says Dennis Moss, chief operating officer, Contract Packaging, Inc.
“It has been fascinating watching Kelly Products grow from the little manufacturing facility on Hwy 278 in Covington to the company it has become today. It has been a pleasure working with Keith from the beginning as well as Dennis, Jake and all the good folks I have met over the years. It has been an honor to have been able to participate in this incredible success story,” said Jim Muster, Vice President of Business Development, SE Region, TricorBraun.
Engaged people bring passion to the workplace. And many of Kelly’s newer business ventures have been sparked by his personal interests and passion.
Farming and Food
Kelly’s love for farming and the outdoors led him to purchase Rock House Farm in Leesburg, Georgia in 2005. Today, Rock House Farm comprises more than 4,000 acres, raising cattle, hogs, sweet corn and various commercial crops like corn, soybeans and peanuts. In 2016, Rock House Farm added a dairy in Morgan County, Rock House Creamery. The creamery’s mission is to produce the best creamline milk and other unique dairy products like specialty chocolate milk, kefir, and cheeses. The creamery is also offering tours and field trips.
Kelly started a company garden in 2007 to provide fresh produce for employees and their families. Today, this 11-acre certified naturally grown farm yields more than 100,000 pounds of produce each year and a variety of other goods like chicken, eggs, pork and beef.
Venturing boldly into food retail, Farmview Market, which opened its doors in 2015, incorporates a grocery store, traditional, full-service butcher shop, casual café and farmers market—all featuring delicious, locally sourced offerings. Connecting farms to families, Farmview’s mission is building a more sustainable local food economy. By helping people understand where their food comes from – and the positive impact buying local and eating healthier can have, Farmview is promoting more vibrant and economically sustainable communities.
“We want to be the place where community happens,” says Kelly.
Kelly’s philanthropic endeavors are woven into the culture of the company with many employees giving directly and participating in volunteer efforts. The company supports numerous children’s and health ministries and organizations and other faith-based organizations from Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, CURE, Jay’s Hope, Erin’s Hope, FCA, Young Life, Final Frontiers, Action Ministries, and others.
“We have been blessed and it is our joy and privilege to be able to use our resources to help others,” says Kelly.
On its 25th anniversary, Kelly companies employ more than 200 full-time local, regional residents, and growing.
“We appreciate where we’ve been, but we are only looking forward,” says Kelly.