News : Favorite Food exec Barstow: Beat the 'monsters' with service

Nov 6, 2012

From Portsmouth Herald

Chris Barstow just wanted to take a Maine vacation. But his leisurely trip led him to a new career.

Barstow, 53, is president and chief executive of Favorite Foods in Somersworth. The 50-employee firm provides supplies to local, independent restaurants (no national chains) as well as some state prisons, private schools and food manufacturers.

Question: What was your first job?

Barstow: My first job was at Texas Instruments in Silicon Valley. I was 22 and selling semiconductors to high-tech businesses. I was there 5 ½ years.

Q: Did you enjoy it?

Barstow: I became frustrated by corporate America. I realized it wasn’t for me. The biggest issue was inflexibility and response time to go through levels of management to change things or reach a decision.

Q: So you quit?

Barstow: In 1987, I took a vacation to visit my brother in Maine. He had just founded Favorite Foods. We talked about my joining him, and two months later I gave my notice at Texas Instruments. Favorite Foods doubled its head count from one to two when I got here. At the time, we were on West Road in Portsmouth.

To read the entire interview in the Portsmouth Herald, click here.