Fire Dancer Foods


"The overall effect is deliciously unusual." -Saveur Magazine

"Ford's has taken the peanut as bar snack to more sophisticated levels." -Specialty Food


Golden Chile Award for Best New Snack Item

Best Nut in the USA by the Food Network

Taste Award from the Fine Food Guild Europe

1st Place: Fiery Food Challenge


About Us


Ford's Gourmet Foods is rooted in a fourth generation produce company started in 1946. Lynn and Sandi Ford joined the family business in 1973 and expanded the business in 1986 by creating "Ford's Fancy Fruits & Gourmet Foods," which sold fruit baskets including NC peanuts, later expanding to open 2 retail stores carrying more than 400 NC gourmet food items from around the State.

The firm began considering exporting in the summer of 1994. The owners had been going to the NASFT (National Association of the Specialty Food Trade) International Fancy Food Show in New York City for years as buyers, looking for good packaging for their retail gourmet food stores. Then luck helped. Elberson, Singer and Shuler, a newly formed advertising company out of Charlotte and now known as Elberson Partners, offered to put together an ad campaign. The owners of Ford's Fancy Fruits strongly believe this creative talent was essential in making their company look stable and professional. So in 1994, Ford's went to their first International Fancy Food Show as a seller on the other side of the aisle, debuting Bone Suckin' Sauce to 50,000 buyers from around the world. Walt Disney World became one of their first customers from the show by placing their order on the first day they returned to Orlando, FL.

At that show, foreign customers approached their small 10' x 10' booth, including the senior gourmet buyer from Harvey Nichols in London, a version of "Harrod's" meant for locals. The ad campaign materials were so good that they attracted media coverage. A writer/photographer from The New York Times was impressed enough to mention "Bone Suckin' Sauce" on the first page of the food section the second day of the show. Soon Canada's "Bruno's," based out of Toronto, wanted to carry the product in four of its stores.

Today the firm exports to over 56 countries. About 15-20% of its business comes from these exports, and both their domestic and export sales are growing. With Vaughn Ford joining the company in 1993 and Patrick Ford joining the company in 1996, Ford's Gourmet Foods continues to develop gourmet foods concentrating on gluten free products.