Business Close-Up: Northwoods business offers inside look at manufacturing supplements
It isn’t easy getting the required supplements with today’s hectic lifestyles, and it was on this premise that Don and Lucy Hillestad opened their factory back in 1959. For more than 53 years, Hillestad Pharmaceuticals factory in Woodruff has produced a wide range of health care products. Don is at the helm of this thriving business, and with about a dozen employees, manufactures a variety of not only nutritionally beneficial supplements and vitamins, but skin care products and environmentally friendly cleaning solutions as well.
Perhaps one of the most intriguing aspects of Hillestad’s are the tours offered to visitors on a daily basis. “I want people to see first hand how we make our products,” said Don. “I want them to see for themselves that we use the freshest ingredients for our supplements, mineral formulas and vitamins.”
Tour participants will be able to view Don’s meticulously clean warehouse and factory, and watch employees perform a variety of duties, including shipping products, bottling and the coating of certain pill forms. In fact, over the years, Don and Lucy have perfected the techniques used to manufacture a variety of pills and tablets. For instance, one vitamin manufactured here has a special coating that makes swallowing it easier and delivers the nutrients into the correct place within the digestive tract. Tour visitors will also see how products are analyzed before they are made into finished products.
“We only use the freshest ingredients in our supplements, and I want to make sure that the products we use to make those supplements are the finest and freshest that can be purchased,” said Don.
One of those products has been a favorite with customers for years-a high potency vitamin called Summit Gold. “This is a very high quality vitamin that our customers really find beneficial,” he said.
But supplemental vitamins are only a small fraction of what this company offers. Don and his team have developed many formulas that can help in a variety of nutritionally beneficial ways. There are formulas for vitamins A,B,C and D. There is a cholesterol balance formula, digestive products, natural remedies, and an Omega-3 supplement made with the purest salmon oil in addition to physical fitness products, a joint care formula and weight loss products. Included in this line up are skin creams and personal care products and even such specific formulas made with ginseng and enzymes. Don has developed lines of supplements that will support kidney and liver functions, hair growth, pancreas function, eyesight, and mental alertness to name a few. Don also offers a line of naturally made pet products at his factory store.
This savvy entreprenuer continually stays abreast of vitamin and supplement research so he can produce the very best formulas for his customers. In fact, he has developed a supplement for dialysis patients that can support the body during this procedure. It is potent, so a prescription is required for its use. “This is perhaps one of our fastest growing products,” said Don.
All of these products are available in an area within the Hillestad factory, so customers can conveniently purchase them when they visit. Don also ships his products across the world, and along with his very informative website, he also publishes a comprehensive catalog.
Visitors are always welcome during business hours, and tours are given every day but Saturday. Hillestad Pharmacueticals is open Monday through Saturday from 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. It is located at 178 Hwy. 51 N. in Woodruff.
For more information, call (800) 535-7742, email [email protected] or visit hillestadlabs.com.