Wholesale – Retail
For over 100 years Lehi Roller Mills has been
producing high-quality baking flour. The majority of the
mill's flour goes to larger corporate and bakery
However Lehi Roller Mills also sells gourmet baking
mixes in national retail outlets. Recently Lehi Roller
Mills responded to healthy lifestyles by introducing
Heart Healthy Hotcakes.
For a complete history of Lehi Roller Mills read
The History of Lehi Roller Mills
Adapted from "The Deseret Morning News" By Carma
By 1905, Lehi farmers were getting tired of hauling
wheat to American Fork for milling — something they had
been doing for 15 years since the Spring Creek Flour
Mill went out of business.
But in June of that year came an announcement in the
Lehi Banner: A group of businessmen and other
shareholders, who each invested $20,000, were forming a
co-op to build a "a new flour mill with modern pattern
It was state of the art for early 20th-century
America, and the new mill turned out it first flour on
April 2, 1906.
One hundred years later, the Lehi Roller Mills is
still doing what it does best: turning out high-quality
baking flour, says Sherman Robinson, current owner and
manager of the plant.
Robinson's grandfather, George G. Robinson, purchased
the mill in 1910, and it has been owned and operated by
the Robinson family ever since.
"My great-grandfather was a millwright and miller in
Delaware," explains Robinson. "He came to Utah to help
set up some early mills. In those days, almost every
town had a flour mill or a grist mill. His son — my
grandfather, George — came with him, and he stayed to
work at a mill in American Fork. Then he bought this
You could say that milling is in the Robinson genes.
"Somewhere in America, for the past 200 years, there
have been mills operating under the Robinson name. But,
if you go back over the ocean, my ancestors have all
been flour millers since the 1500s," Robinson says.
One of the mill's greatest brushes with fame came in
1984 when it served as the backdrop for "Footloose,"
starring Kevin Bacon and John Lithgow.
"That's been 24 years, but we still get calls from
people who want to have their picture taken on the porch
where Kevin Bacon packaged flour. I've been surprised
how much impact that movie had. When it first came out,
we had a full-time person on the phone answering
questions," Robinson says.
Lehi Roller Mills currently employs about 50
full-time workers. That swells to about a hundred around
the Christmas holidays to take care of the demand for
the mill's mixes.
That all got started because Robinson had a dentist
friend who wanted something from the mill to give to his
clients. "He kept bugging us, so almost as a joke, my
wife took some Christmas material and sewed some bags,
and we filled them full of 25 pounds of flour."
They were surprised at how quickly and impressively
the idea caught on, but they soon realized that 25
pounds was too big, so they decided to try something
smaller. "We came up with a pancake mix. Because of
minimum requirements, we had to do 5,000 of them. I
thought, 'What will we ever do with all these?' But we
introduced them the first of November and by
Thanksgiving they were all gone."
Today, the mill offers a variety of mixes, not only
for pancakes but also for muffins, bread, cookies,
brownies and more. That retail business has been one of
the things that has helped the mill survive, says
The majority of the mill's flour, however, goes to
larger corporate and bakery clients.
"In 1952, my father sold Pete Harmon his first bag of
flour for his Kentucky Fried Chicken. KFC still buys
flour from us." They also sell flour to Sarah Lee,
Interstate Brands, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and a lot of
local bakeries. "A lot of people eat a lot of our
product and are not aware of it," Robinson says. About
50 percent to 60 percent of the flour goes out of
He is also quick to point out that while the mill may
be 100 years old on the outside, the inside has been
changed and upgraded several times over the years to
where they have state-of-the-art equipment. While the
basic process remains the same, "we have better quality
control. It's safer. We can grind more in the same
space. The technology hasn't changed; it's just more
Why the Turkey?
A frequent question at the Lehi Roller Mills is: What
do turkeys have to do with wheat?
People see the big Turkey Red Wheat sign, and "they
ask if we're feeding turkeys," says Sherman Robinson,
owner and operator of the mill.
Turkey Red Wheat comes from wheat that was brought to
this country by a group of Mennonites who came from
Turkey, he explains. "It became very popular. It's what
made America into a wheat-producing country." It was
planted in the fall and then grew in the spring.
"Today, it's sometimes called hard red winter wheat,
but it's still the primary wheat we use." The gluten and
protein content, as well as the flavor, make it ideal
for baking, he says.