By Megan Miller, Editor
BIRMINGHAM – Albert L. “Bud” Cason, founder and chairman of Bud’s Best Cookies, will be inducted into the Baking Hall of Fame by the American Baking Society in February.
The award was created to recognize industry innovation and entrepreneurial spirit. Those inducted into the hall of fame are selected based on achievements in organizational growth and development, equipment design and innovation, advancements in ingredient technology and processing or related service to the commercial baking industry.
“The lives and careers of these individuals provide wonderful examples of excellence and leadership,” said John Del Campo, chair of the A.S.B. Baking Hall of Fame Evaluation Committee and general manager of Repco – Bakery Division, Salina, KS. “They represent the best qualities of compassion, forward thinking and personal judgment. The committee feels honored to have looked at their accomplishments. They inspire our future by their experience.”
Cason was one of the first cookie producers to recognize the potential of manufacturing. Bud’s Best Cookies is based out of Birmingham. Cason decided to serve the need of the southeast after seeing that large consumer products goods companies were moving out of manufacturing to concentrate resources on marketing.
Bud’s Best Cookies was founded in 1991 and began operations in 1992 in a 130,000 square-foot facility in Birmingham.
Since then, Cason has mastered mass-production of mini-cookies, later adding full-sized cookies and most recently wafer products. The company also owns Uncle Al’s standard-sized cookies, Woopee brand and Bud and Al’s signature line of specialty cookies.
“Since I was 12-years-old working in my aunt’s bakery, I always knew that I wanted to own my own cookie factory,” Cason said. “Being inducted into the Bakers Hall of Fame is such an honor and makes me realize all of my dreams have come to fruition.”
Cason is active in his community and church. He is co-founder of the Cookie and Snack Bakers Association (CASBA) and serves on the board of the Biscuit & Cracker Manufacturer’s Association (B&CMA). He is also involved in the merger of B&CMA and the America Bakers Association (ABA).
Cason is among two other bakers being inducted, including Murray and Marvin Lender of Lender’s Bagel Bakery and Joseph (Joe) Schwebel of Schwebel’s Baking Company.
The Baking Hall of Fame was launched in 2006 and has enshrined 76 individuals including the 2017 class. Inductees come from bakeries, allied equipment and ingredients suppliers, schools, service organizations and publishers.